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Historic ancestral hall in Fujian extensively damaged after storm

By Chen Meiling | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2024-06-18 20:36

The Guantian Li's Family Ancestral Hall complex, a valuable heritage site under State protection in Shanghang county, Longyan of Fujian province, was hit by a severe rainstorm, resulting in extensive collapse.

Relevant departments and experts from the city and county are on the scene to guide post-disaster relief work.

The preliminary assessment indicates that the rammed earth wall became severely soaked, resulting in soil softening and loss of support, according to a notice released by the hall's management committee on Tuesday.

The committee stated that Rentian town, where the hall is located, experienced sustained heavy rainfall from Sunday to Monday. The 24-hour rain exceeded historical records.

Starting at 2:40 am on Monday, collapses occurred successively on the east and west sides of the hall with approximately 1,000 square meters of damaged building area. The main hall suffered no significant damage, and there were no casualties, the statement said.

Subsequent actions will follow the requirements for cultural relic restoration to carry out emergency rescue and repair work on the ancestral hall.

External visits are temporarily suspended.

The hall was built in 1836 by descendants of the Li clan to commemorate their ancestor Li Huode, who first settled in Fujian. It is the largest and best-preserved ancestral hall in Fujian and one of the most influential ancestral halls of the Hakka region.

In 2013, the State Council announced it as part of the seventh batch of important heritage sites under State protection. In 2015, it was upgraded to a national 3A-level tourist attraction.

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