Impervious to the heavy rain, a troop of soldiers tasked with clearing the Queen's and King’s Lines, was deployed at the Northern Defences last Sunday. The operation saw modern-day Sappers, the descendants of the Royal Artificer Corps, assisting the Government in what is being recognised as one of Gibraltar’s most significant restoration projects.
The Northern Defences is a key element of the military defensive network of walls, tunnels and bastions which has kept Gibraltar safe through numerous sieges. This system of defences links Casemates Square all the way to Princess Amelia’s Battery in the Upper Rock Nature Reserve. Having being neglected for decades Her Majesty’s Government has invested during the past two years in rescuing this site. The last two years has witnessed the clearing up of the area to the north of Road to the Lines, Prince’s Lines and the associated galleries.
The Deputy Chief Minister, who chairs the Inter-Ministerial Committee on the project, said:
“It is gratifying to have reached a stage in this project where one can appreciate the magnitude and workmanship of the defences which have been buried for decades. From a global perspective these defences are second to none: any visitor can easily appreciate why the saying “As Strong as the Rock” is so apt. The defences not only allow us to be able to see into the past but they also provide Gibraltar with another world-class visitor attraction in a key location. The Government is grateful to the Royal Engineers and to the Heritage Trust for their continued involvement.”
The Government says that the Heritage Trust has praised the efforts of the Gibraltar Government in having the vision to invest in such an asset and will be assisting in organising tours of these newly exposed defences.
Pics: Top left: Royal Engineers at the Kings Lines – February 2017
Below: Before and after pics:
- Upper Forbes Battery May 2016
- Upper Forbes Battery December 2016
- Queens Lines – May 2016
- Queens Lines – February 2017