Il-Kunsill Lokali Ta' Kerċem
View of Kerċem
|Borders||Fontana, Għarb, Għasri, Munxar, Saint Lawrence, Victoria|
|• Mayor||Mario Azzopardi (PN)|
|• Total||5.5 km2 (2.1 sq mi)|
|Population (March 2011)|
|• Density||350/km2 (900/sq mi)|
|Demonym||Kerċmi (m), Kerċmija (f), Kerċmin (pl)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|Patron saint||St. Gregory, Our Lady of Succors|
The village of Ta' Kerċem lies close by to the south-west of Victoria, spread between the picturesque Lunzjata Valley, the green hills of Tal-Mixta, Għar Ilma and Ta' Dbieġi, and stretching up to the Pond of Għadira ta' San Rafflu and Xlendi cliffs.
Archaeological discoveries show that the sizeable area of Ta' Kerċem was inhabited as early as the Għar Dalam phase (5000-4500 BC). The Roman Baths and an early Christian cemetery at Għar Gerduf, referred to by Gozitan historian De Soldanis as Roman Catacombs, are also significant discoveries. However to date, these historic sites are not accessible to the public.
Ta' Kerċem evolved into a village community in the late Middle Ages, around an ancient chapel dedicated to Pope Gregory the Great built around 1581. The site gained historical importance due to the annual traditional St. Gregory procession from the Matrix church in Rabat (Victoria) to this medieval chapel, upon the saint's feast, namely on the 12th of March. The chapel was however replaced by the present parish church in 1851 which in turn was enlarged later on to its present state between 1906-1910. Ta' Kercem became a distinct parish on 10 March 1885 by Bishop Pietru Pace. The Ta' Kercem parish church is the only Gozitan church, which is jointly dedicated to two saints. As referred earlier, it was traditionally dedicated to Pope St. Gregory, but since 17 August 1885, the church was additionally co-dedicated to Our Lady of Perpetual Help.
The village of Ta' Kerċem has a population of around 1700 people. Cultural activities include the annual Għadira Fair, which is a popular traditional family fair in the countryside area of San Rafflu.
The hamlet of Santa Luċija, Gozo, although in itself incorporated within Ta' Kerċem, is quite distinct with its rustic church square. Santa Luċija is inhabited by country folk with a few old houses built around an old chapel dedicated to St. Lucy.
- "Population statistics". Malta Government Gazette. mjha.gov.mt. 9 August 2011.