Sunday, August 05, 2007

The House of Twelve Roofs.

The Brunei Times reports Brunei postal authorities recently released a set of stamps commemorating the 100th anniversary of "Bubungan Duabelas", the House of Twelve Roofs, which is widely regarded as one of the oldest - if not the oldest - buildings in Brunei.

The site of Bubungan Duabelas goes all the way back to the mid 19th century and dates from the two treaties that Brunei and Great Britain signed in 1846 and 1847.

In July, 1907, the house was built and became the British Consulate.

On December 31, 1941, Lt General Kawanguchi of the Japanese Army invaded Brunei and used the "Residency" as his headquarters. Surprisingly, during the Allied Forces bombing of Brunei during the mid 1940s, the Residency was spared.

The Residency was repaired after the war and in 1959, the Duke of Edinburgh stayed there. In 1972, Queen Elizabeth II held an investiture there. By 1971, the Residency was known as the High Commissioner's Residence and not as the "Residency". The British High Commissioners stayed there until 1984 when Brunei gained its full independence.

In 1998, the Brunei government signed a joint project agreement with UK to turn "Bubungan Duabelas" into a permanent and dynamic exhibition centre in commemoration of the relationship between Brunei and UK.

Reporter Rozan Yunos points out that the $1 stamp shows a photo of an older building, built in 1890, now demolished, of a British Consul Agent's house rather than the current structure.

To read the entire article, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 5:17 PM