The George Cross was awarded to the island of Malta by King George VI in a letter dated 15 April 1942 to the island's Governor Lieutenant-General Sir William Dobbie, so as to "bear witness to the heroism and devotion of its people" during the great siege it underwent in the early parts of World War Two. The George Cross is woven into the Flag of Malta and can be seen wherever the flag is flown. While Italian and German bombers brought havoc to the Maltese islands, the problem of supplies was soon felt. An invasion threat in July 1941 ended in complete failure when coast defenders spotted E-boats of the Italian Decima Flottiglia 10th Fleet MAS. Whilst people suffered hunger, a final assault to neutralise the island was ordered by the German Field Marshal Albert Kesselring.(more...)
Żejtun (also called Iż-Żejtun) is a medium sized town in the south of Malta, which has 11,425 inhabitants. Żejtun possesses the title of Città Beland, which was conferred by Ferdinand von Hompesch zu Bolheim, the Grandmaster of Knights of Malta in 1797. Żejtun takes its name from Arabic az-zaytun [الزيتون] “the olive”, which was one of the main productive industries in Malta. In Medieval times the whole district around Żejtun, that is, in the southern end of Malta, was known as le Terre di Santa Caterina, ('the lands of Saint Catherine' in Italian, which was the official language in the period). Various new villages were formed from parts of the Parish of Żejtun, such as Ghaxaq and Marsaxlokk, each now being considered as a separate parish.(more...)
Photo credit: Ies
The Lija Belvedere Tower, a beautiful piece of architecture and a landmark in Transfiguration Avenue in Lija, was built in 1857 as a folly within the garden of Villa Gourgion. Today the Belvedere is in the hands of the Lija Local Council and forms part of the heritage of Lija.