In Penang Hill – A Journey Through Time, author Mike Gibby has captured – for the first time – not only the fascinating ‘journey through time’ of Penang Hill but also what it means to visitors, residents, Penang and the world, including a discussion of its possible futures and a helpful walker’s guide for discovering many of its hidden gems. Lavishly illustrated with over 500 images, many never seen before, this is truly a book to treasure.
PENANG HILL exudes a charm that is hard to quantify. For most of its history, its highest ridges were the preserve of the rich and privileged, while its slopes were cleared for cloves, nutmeg and coffee plantations. Perhaps its restricted access has been its saviour. Although its summit was conquered with both a road and a railway, neither of those, nor world wars, financial crises and neglect dampened its charm, creating a unique pearl at the heart of Penang. Today, we are faced by an explosion in the number of visitors to the Hill, enjoying its unique character. Yet there is an extraordinary lack of accurate information about the Hill, its history and its heritage. Now, more than ever, there is an increasing need to safeguard its treasures, its water catchments, and the forests that play an important role in the climate of Penang. This richly illustrated book is both a labour of love and a guide to the wonders of Penang Hill. It is essential reading for all, from policy makers and planners concerned for its future, to its residents, habitués and casual visitors. It is the first and only complete telling of the story of Penang Hill.
About the author: Mike is a British-born educator who has spent the majority of his life in South East Asia. He holds a B.Sc. in Biology from the University of Leeds and a M.Sc. in Evolution from the University of Liverpool. His primary interests in the life sciences are in the related fields of ecosystems, conservation and evolution and he has a passion for historical investigations. As a committed educator and outdoorsman he has lead expeditions to the mountains of Ladakh, Nepal, Iceland, Norway and Morocco as well as the principal summits of ]ava, Sumatra, Vietnam, Malaysia and South Korea. His students have been introduced to the varied delights of mangrove, seashore, rivers and rain forest. Mike is a keen hiker, biker, photographer and explorer of the many wonders of Penang; his favourite questions are ‘how?’ and ’why?’ He is the author of several books on Malaysia: Street Art Penang Style (2016) and Crowned with the Stars: The Life and Times of Don Carlos Cuarteron, First Prefect of Borneo 1816-1880 (2005). He is currently working on two further titles with a Malaysian theme. Mike is married with two children and lives in Penang.