With thousands of years of sea-faring history and remains surrounding the islands, we wish to include here some the information we come across for the benefit of divers and history buffs alike. Whilst some posts are of a general nature, we are also categorising some of the findings in specific groups depending on the subject and contributors to this page.
General Posts (uncategorised further)
- B-24 Liberator – Archaeologists’ work leads to identification of remains of missing airman after 80 years.The Times of Malta today reports about the discovery of human remains amongst the wreckage of a B-24 Liberator airplane. The plane has recently been opened for divers to visit as part of the Heritage Malta Underwater Museum technical dive sites. The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) (USA) announced this news on the 31 August … Read more
- Diving in the deep (history)This interview published today on Maltatoday with Professor Timothy Gambin provides an insight into the reasons for declaring an underwater park 100m deep, as well as an insight into the importance and ways to appreciate our underwater heritage. A large stretch of seabed off Xlendi has just been inaugurated as a deepwater archaeological park: billed … Read more
- Monument in memory of the victims of the SS Polynésien to be inauguratedTimesofmalta.com reported today that the Serbian community organisation in Malta is to erect a monument on the Marsascala coast to recall the sinking, 105 years ago, of the ocean liner SS Polynésien some 3km offshore. A Serbian community organisation in Malta is to erect a monument on the Marsascala coast to recall the sinking, 105 … Read more
- World’s first Deepwater Archaeological Park inaugurated off XlendiLocal media today announced that yesterday evening, an official announcement was done that a stretch of sea outside of Xlendi, Gozo has been declared the World’s first Deepwater Archaeological Park. The park is also complemented by the nearby Xlendi Tower which hosts some artefacts that had been recovered from the seabed and which was also … Read more
- Archaeology and the Sea in the Maltese IslandsFrom https://bdlbooks.com/product/archaeology-and-the-sea-in-the-maltese-islands/ The Maltese Islands have, since ancient times, been witness to various degrees of maritime activity. This movement of ships was mainly linked to the island’ excellent harbours. Over the last 50 years, the introduction and rapid increase of SCUBA diving around Malta and Gozo has led to numerous archaeological discoveries on the seabed. … Read more
- Diving Team commander saves St. John Co-CathedralIn an article on The Malta Independent, Albert Galea tells the story of when in the 1950s a huge WW2 bomb was found just outside St. John’s Co-Cathedral in Valletta, and by “luck” (read more in the article), responsibility on carting it away (without blowing up the Co-cathedral nor anyone close enough) ended up in … Read more
- 700BC – That’s how old these recovered amphorae are!The Munxar Local Council announced the official opening of the restored Xlendi Tower, which will house a collection of amphorae, some of which recovered from the nearby seabed more than 60 years ago. The official opening of the Xlendi Tower will happen on the 5 July 2023 at 19:00, which will also be the first … Read more
- Steamship AdjutantThese islands have seen more wrecks than those we visit today… and maybe a few bits and pieces may still be lying around. Thanks to Kevin for sharing the below information about a lesser known event, and maybe spare a thought for those who did not survive them. Thanks to Kevin Aquilina, a wreck enthusiast … Read more
- TM – Consolidated list of Archaeological Zones at SeaOn the 23 January 2023 Transport Malta issued Notice to Mariners 04 of 2023 – Archaeological zones at sea – Superintendence of Cultural Heritage (Consolidated list January 2023) The list includes the sites protected under the Cultural Heritage Act (CAP445). As per the notice, several conditions are required to carry out diving operations at these … Read more
- The Malta Airport Foundation supports Heritage Malta in declaring the world’s first deep-water archaeological parkHeritageMalta reported on it website that The Malta Airport Foundation is pleased to announce that it is supporting Heritage Malta’s pioneering work to declare an underwater site the world’s first deep-water archaeological park. First discovered in 1993 just off Xlendi Bay in Gozo, the site lies at 105 metres below sea level and is composed … Read more
- Malta’s most popular diveable wrecks documented in mini-seriesTimesofmalta.com reports that the Malta Airport Foundation has launched Submerged World, a mini-series documenting six of the Maltese islands’ most popular diveable wrecks. The six-part series kicked off with an instalment on the tanker Um El Faroud, which was scuttled 1998, becoming one of the Maltese Islands’ first artificial reefs and diving attractions. The six-minute … Read more
Frederick Galea’s recovery adventures
For those who might not have been lucky enough to know him, Frederick spent decades looking for WW2 aircraft wrecks and organised countless recoveries which are now housed at the Malta at War Museum located within Fort St. Elmo Valletta and at the Malta Aviation Museum, in Ta’ Qali. Below we are reproducing some posts he has shared on his Facebook profile.
- Napier Lion engine recoveryPosted by Frederick Galea on Facebook on the 29/06/2023. During the summer of 1996 scuba-diver David Schembri, while underwater, came across an aircraft engine laying on the sea-bed fairly close to the island of Filfla, and at a distance from Dingli cliffs. He informed our Foundation about the find, and within a short while, wheels … Read more
- Main-plane reconstruction for Spitfire EN199Post by Mr Frederick Galea on Facebook on the 1 June 2022 The other day we showed you the reconstruction of the main-planes. This time we shall see what other components were required for the project to move on towards completion. NOTE: Today, in place is Maltese legislation protecting underwater cultural heritage.
- Main-plane reconstruction for Spitfire EN199Posted by Frederick Galea on Facebook on the 26/05/2023. The other day we showed you the recovered Spitfire main-spar c/w undercarriage legs. These are necessary basic items required to commence reconstruction work on main-planes – most aircraft structures (possibly all) are built around their main-spars. In the accompanying photographs we shall show a quick progression … Read more
- Spitfire parts from seabedPosted by Mr Frederick Galea on Facebook on the 19/05/2023 In 1947, the Air Scouts of Malta were presented with a complete Mk IX Spitfire, EN199. Sadly over the years it fell into disuse and also victim of souvenir hunters, vandals, etc. By 1976, little was left of the aircraft, and that was recovered by … Read more
- Dornier Do J Wal Jupiter VIII – Gnejna underwater wreckPosted by Frederick Galea on Facebook on 12/05/2023 On 16 February 1932, Dornier Do J Wal Jupiter VIII – 112 R Cabina Piaggio force-landed owing to engine trouble at a point 30 miles SW of Delimara at 08:50 hours local time. A 202 Squadron floatplane was dispatched to locate the aircraft with assistance of DF … Read more
Early days of recreational diving in Malta
- Videos by Alessandro BajadaAlessandro Bajada is well known on social media for his photography, as well as for digitising and sharing vintage footage showing Maltese landscapes from decades ago. Below is a selection of videos that he has uploaded to Facebook that are relevant to diving, going back even 50 years ago! 1973 – First Northern European Championships … Read more