The Ipoh Padang which is located next to the Royal Ipoh Club is believed to have existed since 1895, the same age as the club.
It is not merely a usual field; Ipoh Padang witnessed part of the city’s history dating back to the era of colonialism.
Back in 1897, two British officers, C.G. Ogilvie and G.J. Perry launched a fundraiser to open a public recreational ground in Ipoh in conjunction with the Diamond Jubilee commemoration of Queen Victoria.
To make the fundraiser a success, the Chinese communities of Ipoh, among others, took part in supporting the initiative by contributing $43,000 (currency back then).
Apart from being a place for British officers to hold cricket games, Ipoh Padang was also a location of choice for all official ceremonies by the English government, including military parades.
The field was also home to the celebration of the Malay Peninsula (Tanah Melayu)’s Independence Day declaration for Perak in 1957.
Thus, as an effort to preserve the historic area, the 130-year-old Ipoh Padang will be upgraded via a RM3-million light and sound project development funded by the Northern Corridor Implementation Authority (NCIA).
It will involve interesting lighting installations which include water fountains that will surely attract visitors, along with a giant screen, which are projected to add value to historical heritage in Ipoh.
The ongoing project is slated to be beneficial as a tourist attraction, besides enlivening the city at night which is frequently described as a dead town.
Simultaneously, Ipoh City Council (MBI) is constantly monitoring to ensure that works proceed according to plans, while contractors fulfill set work conditions at the historic site.
Enforcement officers are also tasked to monitor work processes to make sure no damages are done to the field.
Meanwhile, the Mayor of Ipoh, Dato’ Rumaizi Baharin in a media session, said that the light and sound project is under constant supervision to ensure it will carry on as planned.
“Once it’s done, the field will be given a new look. Ipoh Old Town, which already has its special points of interest like murals and hipster cafés, will be further improved with Ipoh Padang’s new development.
“Hopefully, the project enlivens Ipoh and attracts more tourists,” he expressed.