An immersive audiovisual experience will further enhance visits to Underground Valletta in the coming days. The experience is the result of a project funded by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade through its Cultural Diplomacy Fund, and by Heritage Malta.
The project focuses on three aspects that stood out in the life of civilians in Malta and in the allied countries during World War II, namely shelter, famine and resistance. The project’s objective is to unite people from different countries through these shared experiences.
The immersive experience tackles the shelter aspect by showcasing how, during the war, whole communities had to resort to underground areas where they cooked, ate, slept, prayed and even gave birth. One of the roles of Valletta’s underground spaces was, in fact, that of a shelter throughout the war. Residents of the Grand Harbour area were urged to leave their homes and seek refuge with family members living in rural villages, but there were still many people who chose to stay on in the capital and who descended into the spaces now known as Underground Valletta whenever the air raid alarm was sounded.
The audiovisual experience also outlines the Maltese population’s hardships due to a dire shortage of food as the war raged on. Suffice it to say that in October 1942, some 100,000 people depended on the Victory Kitchen for their daily meals.
With regard to the aspect of resistance, visitors of Underground Valletta will see how countries such as Malta resisted enemy occupation on a national, rather than an individual, level. This resistance was acknowledged with the award of the George Cross by King George VI to Malta in April 1942, in appreciation of the people’s sacrifice, loyalty and resilience.
This additional experience at Underground Valletta epitomises Heritage Malta’s efforts towards a visitor-centred experience in its sites and museums, with immersive and interactive features that bring each site to life.
The Minister for National Heritage, Arts and Local Government Owen Bonnici, the Minister for Foreign and European Affairs and Trade Ian Borg, together with the British High Commissioner for the Republic of Malta H.EKatherine Ward, the Ambassador of the French Republic to the Republic of Malta H.E. Agnès von der Mühl and Heritage Malta’s Chairman Mario Cutajar visited Underground Valletta.
The immersive experience will be included in the normal admission price for Underground Valletta until the end of November. During this period, Underground Valletta will be open every day of the week. Tickets may be purchased from the National Museum of Archaeology or online from https://heritagemalta.mt/store/s78/.
For more information about the immersive experience click here.
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