Old Photo for Istana Memories


On 8 December, 2015, I had the pleasure and honor to attend the launch of “Our Istana – Through the Years” as reported in Channel News Asia .

I received the following email invitation from Istana last week:

Dear James Seah,

We note your interest in history as documented in your blog http://blogtoexpress.blogspot.sg

As such, we would like to invite you to attend the launch of  “Our Istana – Through the Years” on Tuesday, 8 December 2015 at the Istana.  It is a coffee-table book commissioned by President Tony Tan Keng Yam as part of Istana’s contributions to the SG50 celebrations and contains photo montages interspersed with quotes that capture memories of the Istana from the perspectives of people who have passed through its gates.

I immediately replied to confirm my attendance for this special event with thanks.


Launch of the “Our Istana – Through the Years”


A memorable photo with former Chief of Defence Winston Choo, the first Aide-de-Camp to President Yusof Bin Ishak in 1965.


Meeting Puan Noor Aishah after 52 Years

What a pleasant surprise to meet Puan Noor Aishah, First Lady and wife of Singapore’s First President, Inche Yusof Ishak.


During the tea reception after the book launch ceremony, I had the opportunity to talk to Puan Noor Aishah about the photo at the tea party 52 years ago.


The gracious and gentle lady whom I first met at the Istana 52 years ago and I showed her the archived photo with the courtesy of the National Archives of Singapore.

The old photo revived our fond nostalgic memories of my first visit to the Istana as mentioned in my previous blog here .


She said that she often invited volunteers of the various charity organisations in Singapore, including the Red Cross Society to the Istana for tea and to meet the volunteers.


Tour of the Istana




The cannon was presented by Lord Louis Mountbatten to Singapore after the surrender by the former Japanese army on 12 September 1945.

The related blog about the Surrender of Singapore on 15 February 1942 here .

4 thoughts on “Old Photo for Istana Memories

  1. A very privileged moment to be recognised for your relentless effort to record memorable moments in the histiry of Sungapore. It is your untiring effort to educate and enrich the memories of people from all ages to understand and appreciate the history of Singapore. You have done a humongous job to bring greater understanding to people who call Singapore their home and are proud to be Singaporeans too. Thank you, James! You are one of the treasured icons of Singapore itself!

  2. Thank you for kind comments, Hui Hwang. It is my pleasure to share ny personal memories of Singapore to post on my blogs to remember for myself, my children and my grand-daughter when she is able to read and understand what Gong Gong had written about old days in Singapore. I hope the younger generation would like the heritage blogs meaningful and worthwhile educational stuff to find out more from their parents, grandparents and great grandparents to learn the social changes and developments for a better and improved Singapore compared to the primitive and outdated ways done in our country. Every generation should look forward to better ways of life with advanced technology, education and opportunities for the future. God bless!

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