Greater China

Richard Hext takes the helm at the Hong Kong Maritime Museum

A well known name in global shipping has been appointed chairman of the Hong Kong Maritime Museum (HKMM). Former Swire and Pacific Basin high flier Richard Hext is taking over from Ian Shiu as chair of the museum, located on one of the piers of the iconic Star Ferry in the heart of downtown Hong Kong.

Hext commented, “What a story! Fishing village dubs itself Fragrant Harbour and reinvents itself – first as a shipping and trading centre, then as world champion east-meets-west financial centre. The HKMM tells us how all this happened, helping us anticipate our future and what else the sea has in store for us. The museum is already a phenomenal success story and I am very excited about this chance to help it realises its extraordinary potential.”

Hext, who serves on the board of a number of shipping firms, has had a diverse career including being an early shipping IT pioneer and a stint as group chief executive at the UK’s University of Central Lancashire.

The 15-year-old museum was created with the financial backing of many in the local shipping community. Former OOCL boss CC Tung serves as the chair of the HKMM Trust.

Famous names in shipping to have taken an interest in museums include Paddy Rodgers. The former Euronav CEO celebrates this month his first anniversary since taking the position of director at the Royal Museums Greenwich in the UK.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.


  1. …..and sadly we seem to have forgotten a mention of Anthony Hardy who was so passionately involved in its creation….

    1. As Purvez (hi, btw!) says, it’s “Anthony Hardy’s museum”, really. Much of the collection, as well as much of the organising, was Anthony’s.

      Congratulations, Richard, and please sort out a detail for me – a thing that was still missing, when I last visited, was a good contemporary photograph of the iconic Hong Kong vessel of the early period – a lorcha. The only good contemporary photo that I have ever seen was of one alongside the Praya, and it was in the lift of the Hong Kong Club for a while. Of course this may have been sorted out long ago…

    2. It is absolutely the case that HKMM owes its foundation, survival and success to Anthony Hardy’s tireless efforts. He and his wife Susan sourced a great deal of the artefacts.

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