An open let­ter to the Su­per­in­ten­dent of Cul­tural Her­itage

Malta Independent - - LETTERS -

On be­half of Wirt San Ġwann and in my ca­pac­ity as sec­re­tary of this lo­cal NGO, I would like to point out that a pill­box in San Ġwann is in dan­ger of be­ing de­mol­ished to make way for a block of apart­ments in the name of progress. This pill­box is a World War II Her­itage De­fence Site and mer­its pro­tec­tion and con­ser­va­tion for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.

We are aware that your of­fice has al­ready de­clared that it does not con­sider this struc­ture wor­thy of con­ser­va­tion, but we would kindly ask you to re­con­sider and in­ter­vene since the pill­box has sig­nif­i­cant his­tor­i­cal merit and war­rants pro­tec­tion. It is in­con­ceiv­able how a 1930s’ de­fence post in ru­ral San Ġwann, part of the de­fen­sive strat­egy against in­va­sion be­fore World War II by the Bri­tish Au­thor­i­ties, is con­sid­ered to be of no her­itage or his­tor­i­cal sig­nif­i­cance or value. There have been sev­eral let­ters in the lo­cal pa­pers at­test­ing to this la­cuna, and the Wirt San Ġwann com­mit­tee strongly ap­peals to your duty and pow­ers to pro­tect Malta’s ar­chi­tec­tural and cul­tural her­itage. The fact that the struc­ture is some­what di­lap­i­dated and weak does not jus­tify in­ac­tion. It can be strength­ened and re­stored as hap­pens nor­mally with other his­tor­i­cal struc­tures wor­thy of preser­va­tion and pro­tec­tion.

We ap­peal to your good sense and judg­ment in the cir­cum­stances and re­spect­fully ex­pect your help and as­sis­tance to con­serve such an im­por­tant her­itage de­fen­sive struc­ture which formed part of the over­all war strat­egy of the is­land since the 1930’s.

We ur­gently re­quest you to give this mat­ter your full at­ten­tion, as the ap­pli­ca­tion to de­mol­ish the pill box is due for an EPC hear­ing shortly.

We would ap­pre­ci­ate your con­sid­er­a­tion of this re­quest in the in­ter­ests of Malta’s her­itage which you are du­ti­fully en­trusted to con­serve and pro­tect in the name of the Mal­tese peo­ple for the sake of fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.

Tony Cu­ta­jar Sec­re­tary Wirt San Ġwann

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