The mention of the term Chadwick Lakes is likely to take most Maltese readers on a trip down memory lane, with many sharing childhood memories of heading to the area particularly after rainy days, eager to experience a rare example of cascades on the island.

  • Rabat-Mtarfa

    Location

    Rabat-Mtarfa

  • European Regional Development Fund

    Fund

    European Regional Development Fund

  • Fostering a competitive and sustainable economy to meet our challenges

    Programme

    Fostering a competitive and sustainable economy to meet our challenges

  • €5,000,000

    Cost of Project

    €5,000,000

  • €4,237,053

    Total EU Allocation

    €4,237,053

Situated between Rabat and Mtarfa, this oasis of serene fresh water presents a perfect day of walking and trekking, but it is also a popular recreational area for families and young children. It is also an important ecological site. Despite the popularity with the locals, perhaps very few are aware that the area got its name from Sir Osbert Chadwick, who, during the second half of the 19th century planned several dams of various sizes and forms, with the intention of retaining as much rainwater as possible for agricultural use.

His dream objective will be re-established with a massive intervention which is currently being carried out, with the support of EU Funds, aiming to restore the area to re-create the original volume of water storage in three major dam areas in this valley. These storage areas will provide an adequate water storage for the farmers in the area. Hence this will result in an alternative water source to groundwater for the agricultural activities around the Chadwick Lakes area.

As part of this important intervention, which is being managed by the Energy and Water Agency, more than 53,000 m3 of silt and valley deposits that have been depositing for the last six decades have been cleared from the dam areas in this zone. This work aims to restore the valley’s ecological system and, for this reason, invasive vegetation is being removed and replaced with endemic plants. In fact, more than 5,000 trees and plants are being planted along the valley banks to protect against soil erosion and improve the overall valley environment. The planting and reforestation are being done by Nature Trust Malta which is collaborating on this project through an agreement between the mentioned NGO and the Energy and Water Agency.

The infrastructure in the area, such as rubble walls and bridges are also being restored, including the Fiddien Box which is a British built structure used to collect water from several different sources in the area, and, eventually, supply the main water system in our country. This restored structure is now going to be used as an interpretation centre, with a recreational area developed around it.

Prior to the start of the project, several studies were carried out in order to identify various existing species in the valley. The exercise then led to the development of an earth-beaten trail, and also to the restoration of various built passageways making the area accessible to the public. Once the project is completed, this will offer wonderful scenery that complements the stunning beauty of the valley.

The investment of €5million of European Funds in this regeneration project will offer a new life to this important green lung, therefore improving the local environment as well as the quality of life, while protecting another must-visit spot to enhance the quality of our country’s product offering.

www.chadwicklakes.mt

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