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Statues disappear from Msida 19th century façade

Application for demolition of property submitted

Two Msida statues which until some weeks ago adorned the façade of an early 19th century residence on Marina Street, Msida have disappeared, a number of organisations have said in a statement.

They said on Wednesday that the statues - of St Rocco and St Publius - have vanished. An application for the total demolition of the property had just been submitted and was still being screened.

The statues were listed in the National Inventory of the Cultural Property of the Maltese Island in 2012, and their cultural heritage value assessment was considered “high”.

The organisations said the Superintendence of Cultural Heritage had been informed. They demanded that an Emergency Conservation Order is issued on this property and said no effort should be spared to recover the missing statues.

“This case is a worrying example of the way cultural heritage is being completely disregarded when it comes to re-development of old buildings and is sympthomatic of an attitude where breaking the law is the rule of the day,” they pointed out.

The statement was signed by Din l-Art Ħelwa, Kamra Tal-Periti, Flimkien Għall-Ambjent Aħjar, Wirt iiż-Żejtun, Friends of Villa Frere, Department of Architecture and Urban Design, the History of Art and Fine Arts Students' Association and the Department of Art and Art History- University of Malta, Archaeological Society Malta, European Architecture Students Assembly Malta, Society of Architecture and Civil Engineering Students, Wirt Għawdex, Malta Association of Professional Conservator-Restorers, Wirt San Ġwann and Wirt iż-Żejtun.

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