Lascaris War Rooms—Valletta (Malta)

Lascaris War Rooms Entrance
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The Lascaris War Rooms are an underground complex of tunnels and chambers in Valletta, Malta that housed the War Headquarters from where the defence of the island was conducted during the Second World War. The rooms were later used by NATO and they are now open to the public as a museum.

Work on the secret underground complex started in 1940, during the siege of Malta, when a series of tunnels under the Upper Barrakka Gardens and the Saluting Battery that had been used as slave quarters during the Hospitaller period began to be expanded. The complex was completed in early 1943. The site takes its name from the nearby Fort Lascaris, which was itself named after Giovanni Paolo Lascaris, a Grandmaster who had built a garden on the site later occupied by the fort.

The Lascaris War Rooms contained operations rooms for each of the fighting services, from where both the defence of Malta and other operations in the Mediterranean were coordinated. The Operation Headquarters at Lascaris communicated directly with radar stations around the Maltese islands, and it was equipped with Type X machines. The fleets were led from the Navy Plotting Room, while the Anti-Aircraft Guns Operations Room was responsible for the air defence of the island. In the Coast Defence Room, defensive operations in the case of an amphibious invasion were planned. The Filter Room displayed information received from various places, including the naval station at Auberge de Castille.

Lascaris was the advance Allied HQ from where General Eisenhower and his Supreme Commanders Admiral Cunningham, Field Marshal Montgomery and Air Marshal Tedder directed the Allied invasion of Sicily (Operation Husky) in 1943.

Throughout the war, around 1000 people worked in the rooms, including 240 soldiers.

After the war, Lascaris became the Headquarters of the Royal Navy’s Mediterranean Fleet. They played an active part during the Suez Crisis of 1956, and were put into full alert during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, when a Soviet missile strike against Malta was feared.

In 1967, the complex was taken over by NATO to be used as a strategic Communication Centre for the interception of Soviet submarines in the Mediterranean. The war rooms continued to serve this function until they were closed down in 1977.
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Popeye Village at Triq tal-Prajjet in Mellieħa, Malta

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40 mm Bofors anti-aircraft gun of World War II at National War Museum, Malta.

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National War Museum entrance—At Fort St Elmo (Valletta,Malta)

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The Lighthouse at Europa Point

By Allie Caulfield2002-10-26 11-15 Andalusien, Lissabon 334 Gibraltar, CC BY 2.0,

The Europa Point Lighthouse, also referred to as the Trinity Lighthouse at Europa Point and the Victoria Tower or La Farola in Llanito, is a lighthouse at Europa Point, on the southeastern tip of the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar, on the southern end of the Iberian Peninsula, at the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea.

Europa Lighthouse was inaugurated on 1 August 1841 in a brief ceremony witnessed by about 10,000 people. The first upgrade of the lighthouse occurred in 1864, when the single-wick lamp was replaced with a Chance Brothers four-wick burner, with further changes in 1875 and in 1894 when the amount of light emitted was increased. A three incandescent mantle burner was added in 1905. Following further modernisation in the 20th century, the lighthouse was fully automated in 1994.

Europa Point Lighthouse is operated by Trinity House. The cylindrical tower is painted white, with a wide red horizontal band in the middle. The lighthouse has a height of 20 metres (66 ft) and is 49 metres (161 ft) above the high-water mark, and has a white light that occults every ten seconds. The Gibraltar Amateur Radio Society operates from the lighthouse during the third weekend of August each year.

The lighthouse’s beacon may soon be retired if plans for a new UEFA Category 4 stadium go ahead.

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The Monastery of Saint Nichlas of the Cats
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