By SU MYAT MON | FRONTIER
YANGON — Bogyoke Aung San Market has been honoured with a blue plaque that recognises the historic and architectural significance of the second most popular tourist destination in the commercial capital.
Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein presided over the installation ceremony on January 20, cutting a ribbon and using auspicious Eugenia leaves to sprinkle water over the plaque, on a wall near the main entrance to the market.
It is the 16th blue plaque to be attached to buildings of historic importance in the commercial capital under a project launched by the Yangon Heritage Trust and the Yangon City Development Committee in 2013.
Built in 1926 under British rule, the bazaar was initially called Scott’s Market after a Municipal Administrator, Mr Gavin Scott. Its name was changed during the Japanese occupation to Yan Naing Market in honour of Bo Yang Naing, one of the Thirty Comrades. It became known as Bogyoke Aung San Market after independence.
The blue plaques project is aimed at creating awareness among residents and visitors of the historic value of significant heritage buildings in Yangon, YHT director Daw Moe Moe Lwin told Frontier.
“We should maintain the historic sights of Yangon to have a more beautiful city,” she said.
A balance of heritage buildings and modern architecture would help to create a richer, more attractive environment in Yangon, Moe Moe Lwin said.
As well as buildings and other landmarks, the plaques are also used to mark the addresses of significant figures in Myanmar’s history.
The blue plaques being installed on buildings in Yangon follow a tradition begun in London in 1867 that has spread throughout the world.
Yangon buildings bearing the blue badge of distinction include the former Rowe & Co department store, known as the “Harrods of the East”; City Hall, which is regarded as one of the finest examples of syncretic Myanmar architecture; the Armenian Apostolic Church of St John the Baptist built in 1766; and the Central Fire Station, one of the oldest buildings in the city being used for its original purpose.