Bukit Ibam Mine : History Re-visit

Bukit Ibam Mine In History

Bukit Ibam In History - Workshop Bukit Ibam 1962Rompin Co Workshop at Bukit Ibam in 1962.

Recently I received a comment and an email from our reader.  I publish here his comment.

Hi Mamadou.

To get to the point, I was taken by your article on Bukit Ibam immediately since I was a founder pupil at Lanjut School and the first Dux of the school at Bukit Ibam where my father was Mechanical Superintendent from 1962 (replacing a man named Ian Keyte) until 1965.

I only mention this as there were comments from people suggesting otherwise. As well I have a photo that will interest someone who worked there or whose father worked there which I shall attach and let you decide if it is worth putting on the website.

In support of the statement above I will also attach the farewell dinner photo that will also provoke memories for some.

By the way I am now quite ill and on oxygen (a legacy of being brought up around the mine?) but if these photos provoke your interest I am happy to let you use them and if you have any questions I will try and write some background for them.  If you would like to load the group photo on the Bukit Ibam thread, maybe someone will recognise themselves and the ball will roll again. 🙂

Yours sincerely

Temujin Lester Hanlon

Bukit Ibam In History - Workshop Bukit Ibam 1962 [Enlargement]“I have a feeling it is the “dayshift” and taken shortly before we left the mine so it could be early 1965.  The man indicated by the left arrow is my father, N.J. “Tim” Hanlon Mechanical Superintendent Bukit Ibam.  The second arrow indicates Mr. Greg Larkin assistant to the Superintendent; and the arrow on right indicates Mr. Ian Grey also an assistant to the Superintendent.  Both Mr. Larkin and Mr. Grey were Australians and Tim Hanlon was a New Zealander (Passed away 22nd November,  1989)” – TJ Hanlon. Enlargement of the group photograph taken at Rompin Co Workshop at Bukit Ibam in 1962 – Contribution of T.J. Hanlon

Bukit Ibam In History - Greg LarkinsGreg Larkins – anyone of you remember about him? – Contribution of Vignesh Baskaran Pillai

Bukit Ibam In History - Baskaran (seated-left)Baskaran Pillai (seated left) – Contribution of Vignesh Baskaran Pillai

Bukit Ibam In History - Don Woods (Mine Supt and GM)Don Woods; Mine Superintendent and General Manager.  Also featured here N.J. Hanlon and wife – Contribution of Vignesh Baskaran Pillai

Bukit Ibam In History - Peter Randall (Mgmt Accountant)Featured here, Peter Randall; Management Accountant.  Anybody know the rest? – Contribution of Vignesh Baskaran Pillai

Bukit Ibam In History - Farewell Party for NJ Hanlon (Incl. Baskaran 1 (office) & 2 (foreman)At farewell party for N.J. Hanlon. Featured here N.J. Hanlon and wife, Daisy, Baskaran(1) – [Office staff] and Baskaran (2)- [Foreman] – Contribution of Vignesh Baskaran Pillai

Bukit Ibam In History - NJ Hanlon (Mechanical Superitendent)“Pictured are my mother Daisy and Father “Tim” (N.J.) Hanlon” – Contribution of T.J. Hanlon.   This same photo also contributed by Vignesh Baskaran Pillai

Hope some of the readers may recognise themselves or they were your friends or relatives.  Then you may start to tie your long lost friendship again.



  1. Hello everyone
    I was reminiscing about my childhood days in Bukit Ibam with my husband recently and he pulled up your blog/website. Growing up in Malaysia, I was exposed to the Australian way of life at a very early age attending the primary school (circa 1967-1970), and amongst other things- eating brownies, singing bush songs and learning to swim. My father, a local Malaysian was a mechanical foreman at the mine. Fast forward many years later and I now live in Perth and have often wondered what became of the Australian families at the end of their tenure and where everyone might now be living. My husband was a mining executive and the world being a small place; we came across a colleague of his (interestingly enough an engineer in mining) whose father worked as the Geologist on the mine! We were throwing names around but he too could vaguely remember with the passage of time. I would love to connect with anyone from our bygone era- I remember so fondly my childhood and will always be etched in my memory. We did a trip back some 10 years ago and came upon a kindly gentleman who remembered my dad and took us around to see the old quarters, rest house, cold storage and airstrip- bless him. Hope to hear from anyone, email available on request.
    Best wishes, Sue Fernandez, Perth, WA


  2. Hello Graeme
    Sorry I missed you when visiting Singapore and Bukit Ibam. You mentioned Jack and Anita Ross. When we returned to NZ in 1970, I was employed to manage maintenance at Waipipi Ironsands in the North Island. The new project was to refine titanomagnetite from sand-dunes and pump the product offshore to bulk tankers for Japan. Sound familiar? On my second day I asked if they had a pilot for shipping and stated that I knew of one who could be available. The next day I met Jack Ross who had just also been employed!!!! He became our neighbour through the seventies until we moved to Canada in 1980.. my address is engineernz33@gmail.com. I will be in touch.


  3. Hi Trevor. Nice to hear from you. I remember you advising that you would be coming to Singapore some years ago, but we never actually met, I still live in Singapore and now semi-retired.. I last visited Bukit Ibam in 1988 with Jack and Anita Ross of Eastern Stevedoring Lanjut.
    Glenn Schumacher visited Singapore last year, and made the trip to Lanjut and Ibam, and gave me an update of the dilapidated conditions, which was a bit sad.I used to communicate with 20+ ex Rompin people every Christmas, which has now dwindled to 4 only, so our numbers are getting rather sparse. You can contact me at scanlon.gj@gmail.com
    All the best for 2108


  4. Hi mamadou, I have some newspaper articles about the Bukit Ibam project from the 1960s to 1970 which I have photographed,
    If you would like to have them to add to your blog, kindly advise how I can get them to you.
    Regards, Graeme Scanlon


  5. Hello Graeme from Trevor Hislop
    Good to see you are still alive and kicking! So many of those who bid us farewell when we left Bukit Ibam in June,1970 have passed on – Dave Newick, Ian Dawson, Marie Larkins, and many others. Brian Dick lives in the USA in a retirement home, Greg Larkins still lives in Sydney. And we live in Palmerston North, New Zealand. I had heard that Bert Bain had died many years ago? We visited Bukit Ibam and Lanjut a couple of years ago on a nostalgic trip. The rest house is falling down. The main mine of course is a lake. Our old house is unused and overgrown. Big changes to the village but the police sergeant was happy to be our tour guide! Mamadou – note my new email address please.
    Trevor Hislop


  6. Hi Mr. Scanlon

    Great to know that you were there too

    Hope anyone who read this will able to get in-touch with you.

    With the closure of RompinCo, no other mining acitvities in similar scale in Malaysia

    Thank you


  7. Hi Mamadou, Whilst searching the internet for another site, I found your “Bukit Ibam Mine In History” blog, spanning the years 1949 to 1970 of the Rompin Mining Co. Bukit Ibam Mine and coastal operations.
    You obviously spent some considerable time researching old media reports to record the events over those years in your interesting blog which brought back memories of the days I spent working as the Electrical Superintendent at Bukit Ibam from 1061 to 1971, and I’m wondering why you chose that subject for your blog. However, regardless of your motives, may I say “Thank you” for your efforts to record the project in history, and I hope your readers are able to enjoy the story of the enormously difficult and expensive project which bought significant benefits to the state of Pahang, and citizens who were employed on the project. Unfortunately, the mining activities ceased in 1970 due to economic circumstances earlier than originally planned, and alternative plans to develop agriculture in the mining leases never came to fruition, and Rompinco was wound up and was consigned to history.
    I would be delighted to hear from any of the ex-employees if they care to contact me by email through your good offices in passing on my email address.


  8. Dera mr.mamadou.
    I’am..residency live and life in Bukit Ibam until now. On behalf now residency of Bukit Ibam.give a salute and very thanksful that moments you was capture and share it ..to me it’svery delightful moment to see..and now on behalf Bukit Ibam organise villager will be keepit that picture to our genaration knowing too..
    Can also see it on http:bukitibampahang.blogspot.com.
    From Sani Ghafar.


  9. Hi Martin

    How are you?
    Glad to know that you were in Bukit Ibam and part of the history

    Do you know any of the commentators here in?


  10. My Dad worked in as a geologist 1960 to 1963 ( Ray Martin} Myself my brother and sister were born there Well Singapre and K.L.


  11. Hi
    My daughter Tracy Hislop also attended the English School at Bukit Ibam from 1967 to 1970 while I was a Mechanical Supervisor at the Mine. Tracy is married and lives at Palmerston North in New Zealand. She has 2 daughters and 1 son plus 2 grandchildren.
    Trevor Hislop


  12. Hello, I happened to come across your blog. I spent 3 years – 1967 to 1970 in the English school at Bukit Ibam.
    I remember learning about kangaroos and boomerang
    There was a weekly Saturday excursion to the swimming pool. The tennis courts, the ‘tuck shop’ and the school sports.
    Teachers- Head master a Mr Coverny, Mr & Mrs Gun, Mr Bank, Mr Choo.
    I also remember the movies played after school- Alice in Wonderland also being in a Huckleberry Finn play.
    Do you have any contacts with the teachers or anyone from the school?
    My dad worked there as an electrical chargeman


  13. Dear Trevor & Beryl,
    Great to hear about former Bukit Ibam people. I remember the Kirbys.
    By the way Marie Larkins is now dead. I occasionally catch up with Greg and will try and do so early in 2015. Greg still lives in Sydney.
    Warmest best wishes for 2015
    Glenn Schumacher (Son of Butch and Betty)


  14. Beryl. Your father also worked with Graham Scanlon who was the Electrical Superintendent from 196? to mine closure in 1970. Last heard of living in Singapore. Greg Larkins and Marie live in Sydney.


  15. My father was Charles William Kirby. Electrical Engineer who worked with all the men pictured. I even remember them Wonderful memories.


  16. Tim Hanlon was followed by Ian Dawson (New Zealand) in 1965 as Mechanical Superintendent. Ian Grey returned to King Island in 1966? and Brian Dick (Australia) and I (Trevor Hislop – New Zealand) were recruited to the Mine as Mechanical Supervisors in 1967 working alongside Greg Larkins and reporting to Ian Dawson(now deceased). Ian returned to NZ in 1969? and was replaced by Ian Grey until the Mine closure in 1970. Greg Larkins and Marie are still living in Sydney. I live in Dunedin – NZ. Brian Dick and Fay are where ?


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