I have known of Henry Lowcock and the Lowcock Hong Kong connection for a while, but never took the time to research it until was inspired by Dr Ben Wong from the UK who is related to the Lowcock family by marriage. Thanks to his research and photos, I was inspired to share more and paint a picture of the Lowcock Hong Kong family. I have photos of various members of the Hong Kong Lowcock family, scroll to the end of this page.
I’ve always felt a special attachment to Hong Kong. I worked in Hong Kong and have lived in Guangzhou, China. In fact, I have more stamps in my passport from visiting Hong Kong than any other country.
Henry Lowcock Hong Kong
The Lowcock surname in Hong Kong. The family originally came to Hong Kong by way of Henry Lowcock (b.1837 – d.1901) who, according to Wikipedia, was a businessman with Gibb, Livingston & Co., a trading firm. Henry Lowcock was also associated with Hong Kong’s parliament, as well as the Diocesan Boys School (DBS). Henry Lowcock is credited as being one of the founders of the Diocesan Boys School.
According to the Chinese language version of Wikipedia, Henry Lowcock was the founder of the Luo Guo family. This was the Chinese name Henry Lowcock adopted (as confirmed by friends from Guangzhou).
Here’s what is known about Henry Lowcock.
- Henry W. Lowcock b. 1837 – d. July 31st, 1901
- m. Annie Loftus Lowcock b. 1846-1849 – d June 23rd, 1932 (married 7th June, 1873, St John’s Cathedral, Hong Kong)
Annie Loftus Lowcock (nee Russell) was born in County Wicklow, Ireland.
This is, quite possibly, a picture of Henry Lowcock during his time as a member of the Hong Kong Legislative Council.
The caption reads “The Hon. Mr H Lowcock Member of the Committee 1874-1881“.
Henry Lowcock, upon retirement, left Hong Kong, returning with his wife Annie to the UK. In the 1891 census, he is listed as being 54 years of age and living in London (Wimbledon) along with a niece from possibly West Africa.
Thanks to Ben, here’s a photo of Henry Lowcock’s gravestone in the UK. Henry is buried at Gap Road Cemetery, Gap Road, Wimbledon, London SW19 8JA, U.K. The grave marks Henry, his wife Annie, their son Henry that passed in Hong Kong, and a dear friend “Mary Henn”.
George Lowcock, married and had two (2) children
- George Lowcock
- m. unknown possibly Johnsford
Henry Lowcock Jr (as I will call him) and his wife Mabel had several children.
- Henry Lowcock b. 10 April 1894 – d. 1 Nov 1943 (was a member of the RAF and was Killed in Action)
- m. Mabel Constance Kotewall b. 22nd Nov 1889
- George Lowcock b. 1894 – d. 1945
- Arthur Lowcock
- m. Aida
- Kathleen Lowcock
- m. Stanley Hung
- Jack Walter Lowcock (b. 1939 d. 2004)
- m. Joan Chan
- Alfred Lowcock (b. 1943 d. 30th Dec 1943)
- Sydney James Lowcock b. 1930 – d. 2012, worked at Diocesan Boys School
- Alwin Lowcock (sometimes spelled Alywn Lowcock) d. 19 Apr 2019
- m. Raymond Wong
Pilot Officer Henry Lowcock (135065)
Henry Lowcock was in the RAF and killed in action in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in India/Karachi, during World War II. Henry Lowcock’s rank was Pilot Officer and his service number was 135065. According to Find A Grave, Henry was killed on the 1st Nov 1943. His death was an accident, with Henry Lowcock killed in an explosion in the Instrument shop of No.320 Maintenance Unit (MU).
Mabel apparently ran a cafe called “Henry’s Cafe” in the 1950’s near Nathan Road Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong. The cafe was located in Chungking Arcade. Henry’s name is on the memorial plaque outside the DBS School Hall.
The wedding of Henry Lowcock and Mabel Kotewall did warrant a newspaper story (April 9, 1926), below.
Sydney James Lowcock MBE
Sydney James Lowcock (b. 11 Dec 1930, d 26 Jan 2012) was the seventh headmaster of Hong Kong’s Diocesan Boy School (DBS). Sydney Lowcock was the headmaster from 1961 until his retirement in 1983. According to the memory of one student, Sydney was known as “Jimmy Lowcock”.
Mr. Lowcock was the great-grandson of Henry Lowcock, his father, also called Henry, was a merchant and civil engineer, died during his service with the Royal Air Force (RAF) in World War II in Karachi, India (now Pakistan) in 1943. Mr. Lowcock’s family was interned by the Japanese in 1942 when living in Canton (modern-day Guangzhou) and was taken by boat to Shanghai where the family was interned and subsequently traveled by boat to Lorenzo Marques, Mozambique, as exchange POW for Japanese personnel, then traveling on to India where they lived till the end of the war. When in Karachi, Mr. Lowcock attended Karachi Grammar School till his return to Hong Kong towards the end of 1946.
In 1947, Mr. Lowcock was enrolled at DBS and eighteen months later, admitted to the University of Hong Kong, studying physics. One year after his graduation in 1952, he returned to DBS to teach physics and also became the Sports Master. He succeeded his remote cousin Rev. She as the Headmaster in 1961.
On February 26, 1969, he was appointed a non-official Justice of the Peace, and in 1976 he was awarded the Order of the British Empire (MBE).
If you google Jimmy Lowcock, it bears much more fruit with memoirs from various people. This includes the note that he was fond of cricket and played for the school when he was a student. There’s also a lovely article in the South China Morning Post where a Professor notes a talk with Jimmy Lowcock was a turning point in his life. In fact, by searching through the Diocesan Old Boys Society website, you will find a lot of former students sharing memories of Jimmy Lowcock.
Sydney Lowcock’s impact on the school is significant and there is an S J Lowcock Foundation Scholarship for economically disadvantaged students. Sydney was well-loved. While Sydney (Jimmy) never married. he spent almost all his income on the students, including paying for school fees, athletic equipment, and so on. As a result, he found himself with almost no savings upon retirement. The DBS old boys raised a fund and purchased for Jimmy a flat in Clear Water Bay, providing him a home to spend the rest of his life.
It’s because of Sydney Lowcock that, in 2002, the Diocesan Boy School did name a house (school sports team) Lowcock House. The color of the house is purple.
While Sydney Lowcock never married, he was an uncle to Brian, Sandra, Keith, Steven, Susan, Anthony, Barbara, Philip, Patricia, and Andrew.
Lowcock Family Hong Kong Photos
Unidentified Lowcock Photo – Potentially Henry Lowcock
In February of 2021, I won an eBay auction for a Carte De Visite of an unknown Lowcock. The photo can be seen below.
The photo has handwritten text on the back, dating it September 5, 1868. I am not sure who this gentleman with the mutton chops is, but it has a passing resemblance to Henry Lowcock. If I flip the above photo, which unfortunately is not an exact mirror image and compare it side-by-side to the ink sketch, then you get this.
The obvious issue is that the unknown Lowcock gentleman on the left has no mustache. There is also the part of the hair, although, since it’s not a true mirror image, technically the part could be hidden. The eyes are tricky, as one person noted Henry’s eyes look more Asian. However, this may be the result of the bias of an artist.
What is very similar is the distinctive mutton chops, the ears, and the attire. The shape of the ears seems about right as too the distinctive nose.
In terms of age, Henry would have been 31 in 1868 and the unknown Lowcock gentleman on the left looks a little bit more distinguished for 31 years of age. That said, 6 years later, Henry Lowcock was a member of the Hong Kong Legislative Council so he could easily have grown a mustache by then. It’s also interesting trivia that Carte De Visites were popular among prominent people and Henry was a prominent Hong Kong businessman.
It’s all puzzling and if you have any insights, please contact me.
Do you know more about the Lowcock surname in Hong Kong?
It’s known that there are still descendants of the Lowcock family from Hong Kong. If you’re a Hong Kong Lowcock descendant or have any further information, want to chat, etc. then please contact me.
Lowcock Family History
If you would like to learn more about the Lowcock surname and family history, please visit the Lowcock History page.
You can learn more about Lowcock Genealogy, or specific Lowcock family member:
- Lowcock Plough: a type of turnwrest plough, invented by Henry Lowcock
- Lowcock’s Lemonade: a soft drink brand
- Lowcock Mill: a hydro-electric mill located in Linton, Yorkshire
- Lowcock Fuel Economiser: for fuel efficiency in steam engines
- Lowcock Razor: a straight razor, made by George Lowcock
- Lowcock Dairy: a Dairy located in Pendleton, UK.
- Lowcock Freemason: Bro. H. Lowcock, a Freemason
- Lowcock Hong Kong: Henry Lowcock, Sydney James Lowcock and the Lowcock name in Hong Kong
- Arthur Lowcock and Blackpool Tower: a director of the company that built Blackpool Tower
- CF Lowcock (Charles Frederick): A British painter from the Victorian/Edwardian era
- Joyce Lowcock: A playwright
- Lowcock War Memorial: pages dedicated to those who served
If you are researching Lowcock Family History and can help – visit the help needed page. If you want to understand the distribution of the Lowcock surname in the UK, visit the Lowcock map page. Just interested in the images and photos? Visit the Lowcock Genealogy Pinterest page.
This page is maintained by Joshua Lowcock.