Cultivating malta's cultural legacy: the journey of the archdiocese of malta cultural heritage foundation
The Fondazzjoni għall-Patrimonju Kulturali tal-Arċidjoċesi ta'Malta (FPKAM) known in English as the Archdiocese of Malta Cultural Heritage Foundation is a separate legal entity established by the Archdiocese of Malta with the purpose to restore, conserve, maintain and improve its movable and immovable assets having a cultural value, also with the aim to have access thereto. This foundation was established in May 2016 and subsequently approved as a voluntary organisation under the Voluntary Organisation Act on 15 September 2016.
Between 2018 and 2023, the Foundation has steered an investmenet supported through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to enhance its cultural portfolio which forms a substanaital part of Malta's cultural tourism product. The scope of this investment was to provide a cohesively enhanced cultural asset platform that can be enjoyed on a long-term basis by both the local community as well as the thousands of tourists that visit Malta's cultural assets annually. Overall, circa 4 million Euro was spent on this investment which brought to light cultural assets in 26 localities. These investments are presented along this site which provides information on the different interventions carried out.
The Foundation is administered by Michael Pace Ross (chairman), Robert Agius (treasurer), Roberto Buontempo (secretary), Rose-Anne Abdilla (member) and Maria Grazia Cassar (member).
Embark on a Spiritual Journey through Malta's Church Trails
Being mindful of the diverse cultural heritage assets that fall within its portfolio, the Foundation has taken a comprehensive approach to restore and conserve these treasures for the delight of future generations. Through a project supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) during the 2014-2020 Programming Period, the project has restored external structures of churches and chapels, conserved works of art, restored artefacts, valorised religious historical artefacts and , created a heritage trail.
These cultural assets are situated in several localities across mainland Malta, which have been geographically clustered to enhance the tourism experience. These localities are diverse and encompass those with a strong tourism presence, as well as others with considerable potential but not located in traditional tourist areas.
Thus, the project's objective is to strengthen the position of already frequented churches and introduce new ones less popular with tourists, to integrate them into the local tourism fabric. This approach will enhance the overall product offering, contribute towards Malta's competitiveness from a tourism perspective, and maintain increasing tourist flows within the already popular localities while enabling tourists to explore other localities with intriguing cultural tourism experiences to offer.
To maximize the project's positive impact on the Malta Tourism Product, the supported localities have been grouped into geographical clusters, with the aim of facilitating tourist flows and enabling a more even distribution of tourists among the various localities. The Northern, Central, and Southern Trails have been identified as the geographic zones for clustering areas. The envisaged investment will be directed towards the restoration, preservation, and valorization of cultural assets, including the restoration of the external structures of churches and chapels, conservation of works of art, restoration of artefacts, and valorization of religious historical artifacts.
These trails showcase various sites, providing visitors with the opportunity to organize their own tour across the geographical locations but also explore the alternative Marian and Pauline narratives present within various sites. These alternative trails encompass notable sites associated with the Virgin Mary and St Paul, as well as other locations that hold a profound devotion to these figures.
Go on and explore these fascinating trails!