Last Sunday saw the Royal Engineers deployed once again at the Queens Lines. This has been the third time this year that the descendants of the Royal Artificer Corps have carried out clearing up operations in the Northern Defences.
Works have continued during the summer months in the area of Forbes Battery and the Queens Lines located to the east and overlooking Laguna estate and have focused in clearing up debris and vegetation along Queens Lines and the Entrenchment Wall Steps in Prince’s Lines, which have been damaging and concealing the monument.
This exercise has exposed a series of mortar positions and loop holes which range from the 18th century to the WWII. This has assisted in highlighting the importance that the Northern Defences has had in the defence of Gibraltar.
A Govt spokesman said, “not only is the assistance provided by the Royal Engineers greatly appreciated, but having the decedents of the Royal Artificer Corps involved, who were the architects of such defences, adds value to the whole project. This Sunday’s exercise has served to expose several gun positions dating back centuries. What is now clearly visible is the evolution of these defences as a response to global conflicts. All this is immediately apparent within a relatively small section of land, and can be recognised as another reason why this project is so special.”
The Heritage Trust has welcomed such a continuous effort by the Govt, especially the Deputy Chief Minister who has been the driving force behind such a project. Delilah Smith, Chairperson of the Trust, stated that one can see the dedication by many who offer countless hours in delivering such a product.
Tours of the Northern Defences showing these newly exposed sites will be organised by the Heritage Trust in conjunction with the Govt commencing in October.