Botanic Gardens accolade a great SG50 gift

My heartiest congratulations to our delegates headed by Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Lawrence Wong,  and officials from the National Parks Board and the National Heritage Board for their years of preparations and hard work leading up to the Botanic Gardens being named a Unesco World Heritage Site ("Yes, Botanic Gardens is a World Heritage Site"; Sunday).

It is a great achievement for Singapore and a befitting time for this accolade to come in the year we celebrate our golden jubilee.

The Botanic Gardens holds many happy and fond memories for senior citizens, especially those of the pioneer generation. In those days, leisure and entertainment places were limited.

My family has fond memories of taking our children there on weekends and on public holidays. One of our favourite spots was the pond where we could watch swans gliding gracefully across the water.

Today, children are more fortunate, with many entertainment places on offer, such as Universal Studios, the Trick Eye Museum, Gardens by the Bay and the two integrated resorts.

The recognition by Unesco of our Botanic Gardens is a good reflection of the Government's efforts to improve people's lives and to put Singapore on the world map.

Having a Unesco-listed heritage site is another big bonus for tourism, as heritage hunters from all over the world will include our Botanic Gardens as a must-see on their list.

This honour is something for all Singaporeans to be proud of.

Jeff Tan Hong Liak