Press Release  

Conservation of l-Ghar tal-Iburdan (26/07/1999)

The Grupp Arkeologiku Malti wishes to express its concern on quarrying activity in the vicinity of l-Ghar tal-Iburdan in the limits of Rabat. In the past few months a large Girna in the area has collapsed, mounds of lime have blocked the northern opening of the cave and the bat colony present in the cave reduced considerably.

Excavations in the seventies had revealed that habitation in the cave occurred in both Roman and Byzantine periods, making the cave a rare example of troglodytic dwelling during the classical period.
During excavations of one of the main chambers of the cave, evidence for dwelling was provided by the uncovering of a  hearth. This was accompanied by remains of meals and a considerable amount of pottery dating back to at least the third century was also found.

The group is of the opinion that preservation of this site should be enforced, to ensure conservation for future generations.

A threatened Girna at Bahrija (08/06/2000)

Over the past weeks a triple girna complex has been seriously threatened by field clearing and dumping at Wied iz-Zebbug in the limits of Bahrija. Activity here has already destroyed the surrounding rubble walls to this vernacular construction.

This is one of the most serious threats to the Giren found in the Maltese Islands. While a number of similar constructions have been erected on various occasions and as touristic attractions (such as near the Luqa Airport), the historic and once functional corbelled huts often remain unprotected. The group urges the authorities concerned for immediate and effective protection of the giren at Bahrija and other such constructions in the Maltese Islands.


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