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Special heritage day at Mistra Battery

Fondazzjoni Wirt Artna is holding a special heritage day at Mistra Battery in Mistra Bay, Mellieha on Sunday.

The event, between 10am and 5pm, will be the public's first opportunity  to visit this gem of military historic architecture following months of restoration by FWA.

This coastal battery was built by the Order of St John between 1714 – 16 at the time of Grand master Perrellos and went on to be enlarged and remodelled into what it is today at the time of Grandmaster Pinto.

Mistra Battery formed part of an extensive coastal defence scheme built by the Order of St John along the shores to protect the island against invasion.

The restoration undertaken was funded through EIPP funds provided by Mepa and other sponsors.

FWA took on from earlier work undertaken by its previous tenant, P2M Fisheries, prior to their handing over of the property back to government.

The recent works by FWA consisted of the restoration of the battery’s defensive dry-ditch all round; the faithful reconstruction of the long-lost gun embrasures facing St Paul’s Islands; the reconstruction of seven musketry loop-holes back to their original form after that they had been opened into windows; the restoration of the original storm water catchment system and the removal of an eight-inch layer of concrete which covered the original gun flooring of the battery.

Currently, work is being carried out to recreate the original compliment of 18th century artillery which consisted of 3 x 24-pdr and 6 x 8-pdr iron cannon.

An example of the latter type complete with its newly made carriage is to be on display during the open day.

There will also be an illustrated lecture on the subject of coastal fortifications, guided tours, hands-on displays and historical re-enactments.

An entrance fee of €3 per adult will apply for non-FWA members. The latter will enter free.

All proceeds will go to fund the cost of making the nine iron guns for the battery.

Following this open day, the battery will be closed again for some more time till all work is completed.

FWA will be opening this battery as one of its regular cultural attractions later on this year.

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