Gudja

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Gudja
Il-Gudja
Local council
View of pre-historic landmark stones in Gudja
View of pre-historic landmark stones in Gudja
Flag of Gudja
Flag
Coat of arms of Gudja
Coat of arms
Motto: Pluribus parens
(Mother of many children)
Gudja in Malta.svg
Coordinates: 35°50′54″N 14°30′9″E / 35.84833°N 14.50250°E / 35.84833; 14.50250Coordinates: 35°50′54″N 14°30′9″E / 35.84833°N 14.50250°E / 35.84833; 14.50250
Country  Malta
Region Southern Region
District South Eastern District
Borders Għaxaq, Luqa, Santa Luċija
Government
 • Mayor John Mary Calleja (PL)
Area
 • Total 2.3 km2 (0.9 sq mi)
Population (March 2014)
 • Total 2,997
 • Density 1,300/km2 (3,400/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Gudjan (m), Gudjana (f), Gudjani (pl)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code GDJ
Dialing code 356
ISO 3166 code MT-11
Patron saints Assumption of Mary; Our Lady of Rosary; Our Lady of Consolation
Day of festa 15 August; 1st Sunday of October; last Sunday of October

Gudja is a village in the Southern Region of Malta with a population of 2,997 as of March 2013.[1] The village is located on a small hill south of the city of Valletta overlooking Malta International Airport.

Motto and villages[edit]

Gudja's coat of arms bears the motto "PLURIBUS PARENS", which means "Mother of many children". These children are Safi, Kirkop, Ħal-Farruġ, Luqa, Mqabba, Birżebbuġa and Tarxien, which at one time were all part of the parish church of Gudja. From Tarxien then, another three parishes emerged: Fgura, Santa Luċija and the Christ the King Parish of Paola. Then again, from the latter, another parish emerged: the Our Lady of Lourdes parish at Paola.

History[edit]

Palazzo Dorell[edit]

A palace known as Palazzo Dorell is located in Gudja. It served as the headquarters for British forces under General Graham during the French blockade of 1798–1800.[2]

Churches[edit]

The parish church is dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary and it's the only one in Malta with 3 bell towers.[3] The most conspicuous of these is the William Baker Tower, built in the 1880s by this English architect.

The Church inside offers some interesting objets d'arte. The titular painting of the Assumption of the Virgin was painted by the Italian painter Pietro Gagliardi in 1887. The same painter was commissioned with the painting 'Our Lady of Mount Carmel' in 1889. Another interesting painting is 'The Death of Saint Joseph', painted by the Italian artist Domenico Bruschi in 1894. The most important sculpture inside the church is the titular statue of the Assumption of Our Lady, sculpted out of solid wood in 1807 by the Maltese Vincenzo Dimech. It is the oldest processional statue in the Maltese Islands featuring the Assumption of Our Lady.

Gudja also has a famous 600-year-old chapel of Bir Miftuħ (which means "open well"). Bir Miftuh was already established as a parish prior to 1436 and so it is one of the first twelve parishes of the Maltese Islands.

The architect Girolamo Cassar, who is known for designing many buildings in Valletta, was possibly born in Gudja (although some sources state that he was from Birgu).[4]

Other[edit]

Pop singer Madonna stayed in Gudja during her short visit in the island.

Schools in Gudja[edit]

  • William Baker Primary School, St. Mark Street [5]
  • St. Joan Antide School, Filippu Castagna Street, a school run by the sisters of St Joan Antide [6]

Places in Gudja[edit]

Zones in Gudja[edit]

  • Bir Miftuħ (Open Well)
  • Ta' Loretu (Loreto's Village)
  • Ta' Xlejli
  • Tal-Ħamra (Reddish Village)
  • Tal-Lampat
  • Tal-Lebbien
  • Tal-Millieri
  • Tal-Mitħna (Mill's Village)
  • Tat-Tajjara (Cotton's Village)
  • Ħas-Saptan

Gudja Main Roads[edit]

  • Dawret il-Gudja (Gudja By-Pass)
  • Triq Bir Miftuħ (Bir Miftuh Road)
  • Triq Ħal-Far (Hal Far Road)
  • Triq Ħal-Tarxien (Tarxien Road)
  • Triq il-Kbira (Main Street)
  • Triq iż-Żebbuġa (Olive Street)
  • Triq Raymond Caruana (Raymond Caruana Street)
  • Vjal l-Avjazzjoni (Aviation Avenue)

Associations found in Gudja[edit]

Musical Groups[edit]

  • Soċjeta Filarmonika La Stella
  • Ghada Muzikali Marija Assunta

Sports[edit]

Football Gudja football team known as Gudja United F.C.. The club enjoyed a successful period in the 1980s and in the 2014-2015 season when they narrowly lost promotion to the Premier Division.

Other

  • St. Patrick’s Athletic Club
  • Darts Group
  • Gudja Youth Nursery

Gudja Local Council[edit]

Current

  • Calleja John Mary k/a Mario (Mayor, PL)
  • Baldacchino Romeo (Vice-Mayor, PL)
  • Grech Demelsa (PL)
  • Caruana Stefan (PN)
  • Sammut Mark Anthony (PN)

The last Local Council election took place on 9 March 2013. Each Local Council serves for 4 years. (Gudja also had a Youth Local Council in 2010/2011).

Previous Local Councils:

  • 1994: Anglu Agius (Mayor), Connie Seguna, Carmelo Dalli, Josephine Spiteri, Anthony Brincat
  • 1997: John Mary k/a Mario Calleja (Mayor), Angelo Agius (Vice-Mayor), Connie Seguna, Horace Muscat, Salvino Spiteri
  • 2000: John Mary k/a Mario Calleja (Mayor), Martin Gravina (Vice-Mayor), Anthony Brincat, Lawrence Schembri, Ivan Schembri
  • 2003: John Mary k/a Mario Calleja (Mayor), Osvaldo Pace (Vice-Mayor), Martin Gravina, Michel Mifsud, Ivan Schembri
  • 2006: John Mary k/a Mario Calleja (Mayor), Osvaldo Pace (Vice-Mayor), Mark Anthony Sammut, Frankie Gatt, Romeo Baldacchino
  • 2009: John Mary k/a Mario Celleja (Mayor), Romeo Baldacchino (Vice-Mayor), Osvaldo Pace, Anthony Dalli, Mark Anthony Sammut

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Estimated Population by Locality 31st March, 2014". Government of Malta. 16 May 2014. Archived from the original on 21 June 2015. 
  2. ^ "Palazzo Dorell" (PDF). National Inventory of the Cultural Property of the Maltese Islands. 28 December 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2015. 
  3. ^ http://www.malta.com/en/about-malta/city-village/gudja
  4. ^ Schiavone, Michael J. (2009). Dictionary of Maltese Biographies Vol. 1 A-F. Pietà: Pubblikazzjonijiet Indipendenza. p. 520. ISBN 9789993291329. 
  5. ^ http://schoolnet.gov.mt/gudja/ Gudja Primary School
  6. ^ http://saintjoanantideschool.edu.mt/
  7. ^ http://islandofgozo.org/place?id=193&item=dorell-palace-and-xlejli-tower
  8. ^ Sagona, Claudia Sagona (2015), "The Archeology in Malta", Cambridge University Press, ISBN 9781107006690, p. 317.

External links[edit]