The Prince of Wales has made a personal donation to save the St Paul’s Anglican Pro-Cathedral in Malta.
The generous contribution comes in support of the Save Valletta’s Skyline Restoration Appeal, which aims to raise €3 million (£2.7 million) to carry out much-needed restoration works.
According to the Appeal website, inspections have identified severe problems threatening the tower, the spire and the external and internal stonework of this iconic place of worship.
Reacting to the royal donation, Martin Scicluna, head of the fundraising committee, said: “We were absolutely delighted to receive the donation, because it reinforces the connections this church has had with the Royal Family ever since his [Prince Charles’s] parents were here in the 1950s.”
“We have been greatly encouraged by the response to the Appeal over the last six months, raising over €500,000 in donations from charities, foundations, individuals and corporate bodies in Malta and the United Kingdom.”
The donation was confirmed by a spokesman for the Prince, revealing it had come from HRH’s charitable foundation.
The Cathedral’s connection with British royalty. Queen Adelaide, wife of King William IV, commissioned the cathedral during a visit to Malta in the 19th century when she learned that there was no place for Anglicans to worship on the island. The construction was funded from the Privy Purse between 1839 and 1844.
Ever since that day, members of the Royal Family went to worship in the Cathedral. Her Majesty, then Princess Elizabeth, became a frequent church-goer along with Prince Philip- also Patron of the Friends of the Cathedral- during their stay in Malta between 1949 and 1951. They returned to the site during their state visit in 2015.
Prince Charles and Princess Anne followed in the footsteps of their parents when they attend services in the Cathedral during their unofficial holiday visits in 1968 and 1970.
The first phase of restoration works is now expected to kick off in 2018.