MALTA (CAPUCCINI) NAVAL CEMETERY
- Country Malta
- Total identified casualties 1089 Find these casualties
- Casualties from First & Second World War
- GPS Coordinates Latitude: 35.88777, Longitude: 14.53637
The Cemetery (also known locally as Kalkara Military Cemetery) is about 2 kilometres south-east of Rinella, a bay and hamlet opposite Valletta across the mouth of the Grand Harbour and on the southern outskirts of the village of Kalkara. Just before entering Kalkara on the main bus route, the Cemetery is signposted along the road "Triq Santa Liberta" to the street of "Triq San Leonarda" and "Triq Santa Rokku". The cemetery entrance is at the junction of Triq Santa Rokku and Triq San Leonardu. Please note, it used to be possible to access the site from a lower entrance on Triq Santa Rokku, but this is no longer possible.
1st March to 31st October Weekdays from 06:30 till 16:30.
Weekends and Public holidays from 08:30 till 18:30
1st November till 27th February Weekdays from 07:30 till 16:30.
Weekends and Public holidays from 08:30 till 16:30
For further information please contact:-
Site Contact details:
Mark Fitzgerald firstname.lastname@example.org
Mobile: +356 99891837
CWGC Area Office Contact Details:
5 Artemidos Avenue, 7th Floor, 6020 Larnaca, PO Box 40970 – TT 6308, Cyprus
Tel: +357 248194
This tranquil cemetery is cared for by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and is the final resting place of over 1,000 casualties from the two World Wars alongside many more civilian memorials. Many of the Commonwealth burials are marked by flat headstones bearing multiple names due to the shallow earth and hard rock found in Malta.
Along the back wall of the cemetery you will see the Japanese Naval Memorial nestled between the trees. During the First World War the Japanese Navy answered the call to support the fight against Germany. You are likely to see many tokens and gifts left here by Japanese tourists who visit to honour their dead.
Also buried here is Ernest Wild, a heroic Royal Navy Seaman who was stranded during Shackleton’s disastrous 1916-1917 Expedition to the Antarctic. Wild survived this terrible ordeal only to return to naval duty and succumb to Typhoid in March 1918.
From the spring of 1915, the hospitals and convalescent depots established on the islands of Malta and Gozo dealt with over 135,000 sick and wounded, chiefly from the campaigns in Gallipoli and Salonika, although increased submarine activity in the Mediterranean meant that fewer hospital ships were sent to the island from May 1917.
During the Second World War, Malta's position in the Mediterranean was of enormous Allied strategic importance. Heavily fortified, the island was never invaded, but was subjected to continual bombardment and blockade between Italy's entry into the war in June 1940 and the Axis defeat at El Alamein in November 1942. At the height of Axis attempts to break Malta's resistance in April 1942, the island and her people were awarded the George Cross by King George VI.
Malta's defence relied upon a combined operation in which the contributions made by the three branches of the armed forces and Merchant Navy were equally crucial. Although heavily pressed in defence, offensive raids launched from the island by air and sea had a crippling effect on the Axis lines of communication with North Africa, and played a vital part in the eventual Allied success there.
Malta (Capuccini) Naval Cemetery, which once belonged to the Admiralty, was first used in 1901. It is close to a Capuchin monastery from which it takes its name. The cemetery is divided into two sections, Protestant and Roman Catholic. Most of the 351 Commonwealth burials of the First World War form a triangular plot in the Protestant section, the rest are scattered elsewhere. Among those buried in the cemetery are 44 men from HMS "Egmont", the Depot ship at Malta, and 22 who died when HMS "Russell" was sunk by a mine off Malta in April 1916.
Most of the 694 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War are also in the Protestant section in a plot near the entrance, but there is another group in the Roman Catholic section. The rest are scattered.
The Commission also cares for 1,445 non-war burials in the cemetery, and 137 war graves of other nationalities.
NOTE: The earth is shallow on Malta and during both wars, many joint or collective burials were made as graves had to be cut into the underlying rock. During the Second World War, such work was particularly hazardous because of air raids. Most of these graves are marked by recumbent markers on which several inscriptions could be carved, and for the sake of uniformity, the same type of marker was used for single graves.