The fourth book of the series ‘Ħannieqa Kotba Melleħin’, Wartime Mellieħa offers an in-depth study of the village during the Second World War. A time which brought destruction and turmoil throughout the world, Malta, with its strategic position at the centre of the Mediterranean, found itself on the front line. The Luftwaffe daily bombings, the lack of food as convoys failed to arrive and the destruction of homes, churches and historic monuments all took a toll on a generation which bore the brunt of the attacks and which was decorated for bravery with the George Cross.
Mellieħa, despite being distant from the airfields and ports which were the Luftwaffe targets, also played a part in this conflict. The refugees which flooded the once isolated village brought in new ideas and values. Pillboxes and other concrete emplacements appeared where previously one found farmers’ fields and virgin land. Soldiers’ tents dotted the countryside. Children’s education was interrupted while fishermen found that their occupation became more hazardous due to floating mines and enemy fighters.
This book, with its eyewitness accounts, excellent research and photographs from the era, will take us back to a period in history which we all hope will never go through again. It will show us the courage and endurance of the villagers who had to go through many hardships so that we today may live in peace in a free Europe.