|Kumitat Amministrattiv Fleur-de-Lys|
Roundabout at the site of the destroyed arch which gave Fleur-de-Lys its name
Fleur-de-Lys is located on the border between Birkirkara (shaded red) and Santa Venera
|• Chairperson||Ronald Briffa (PN)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|Patron saint||Our Lady of Mount Carmel|
|Day of festa||5 July|
Fleur-de-Lys is a suburb that forms part of Birkirkara, and it is also considered a suburb of Santa Venera and Qormi. It lies approximately 5 kilometers away from Malta's capital, Valletta. The population of Fleur-de-Lys is about 2000 people and the area is very small.
Fleur-de-Lys' origins date back to the early 17th century. In 1610, Grandmaster Alof de Wignacourt financed the building of the Wignacourt Aqueduct to transport water from springs in Rabat and Dingli to the capital Valletta. The Aqueduct was finished in 1615, and an ornamental gateway was built where it crossed the road. This had three sculpted fleurs-de-lis on top, as they were the heraldic symbols of de Wignacourt. The suburb was later named after these heraldic symbols on the arch.
During the Second World War, the archway was severely damaged when it was hit by an RAF lorry in 1943 and a truck in 1944. The ruined archway was demolished and the stones were stored and numbered at the PWD. A roundabout was later built in its place. In 2012, plans were made to build a replica of the arch, but works stopped due to a conflict on what to name the replica arch with the Fleur-de-Lys Administrative Committee and the Birkirkara Local Council against the Santa Venera Local Council.
They eventually agreed in 2014 that it should be called "The Wignacourt Arch Known As The Fleur-de-Lys Gate".
Development of the suburb
After the building of the Aqueduct, a number of farmers settled in the area. For many years the only buildings were a few farmhouses surrounded by a lot of fields. In 1928, Farsons Brewery was opened in Mrieħel, an area close to Fleur-de-Lys.
Fleur-de-Lys only began to develop in the Second World War. Many refugees from the Grand Harbour area fled to rural areas including Fleur-de-Lys after the Harbour area was devastated by bombs. By 1941 the British had built Fleur de Lys Battery in the area armed with anti-aircraft artillery. Various government offices were transferred to Fleur-de-Lys in the 1940s as well. After the war the area grew into a small suburb.
In 1946, the church dedicated to Our Lady of Mount Carmel was inaugurated. It became autonomous from Santa Venera in 1949 and became a parish in 1975. Other chapels were later built in Fleur-de-Lys, including those in the Sisters of the Sacred Heart Convent and the one in the private school of St Monica.
The Fleur-de-Lys Administrative Committee was created in December 1999 by an amendment to the Local Councils Act of 1993.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Fleur-de-Lys, Malta.|
- "Fleur-de-Lys arch to be rebuilt". Times of Malta. 9 April 2012. Retrieved 29 July 2014.
- Camilleri, Ivan (22 September 2013). "Councils clash over name of replica arch". Times of Malta. Retrieved 29 July 2014.
- "Councils agree name for rebuilt arch". Times of Malta. 19 August 2014. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
- "Fleur-De-Lys". malta-canada.com. Retrieved 29 July 2014.
- Attard, Antoine (18 November 2012). "Fleur-de-Lys". Fleur-de-Lys Administrative Committee. Retrieved 29 July 2014.