Malta has a long list of very different fortifications, and we’ve already covered walls, forts, towers and other stuff. Today, we will be touching on redoubts. If you’re confused, don’t worry; we’ll get through this together.
Redoubts are kind of squarish, temporary fortifications which have no defence or flanking defences whatsoever.
Also, flank defences are like these military manoeuvres where the attacker has to go around a flank to have a better position over enemy forces.
Kind of like going around the back door to skip a line.
1. Saint George Redoubt
The Saint George Redoubt is found in Birżebbuġa. What’s really interesting about this one is that it has a chapel in it. The Knights built this entry back in 1716 around the chapel in a half-circular manner to prevent enemies from landing at St. George’s bay. So basically, you have a church and a semi circular yard-like thingy in front of it.
This redoubt is in an okay condition and is being taken care of by the Missionary Society of St. Paul.
2. Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq Redoubt
This redoubt has been converted to a beachside cafe, but that shows that the Knights of St. John did a really good job with it. It’s one of those coastal fortifications they got themselves to build before running out of finances. This one is different than the St. George one, as it’s built in a triangular-y shape and serves cocktails.
3. Windmill Redoubt
This beaut in Żabbar has the weirdest shape of them all. It was built during the French blockade by the Maltese insurgents to protect the Żejtun area. Sweet.
It’s still standing nowadays and is honestly in peak condition. The windmill was also used to offer shelter to any troops assigned there, as well as serving as a sick lookout post for the whole area.
4. Briconet Redoubt
Another weirdly-shaped redoubt is the Briconet one in Marsaskala. Another entry by the Knights, it was built as part of the coastal reinforcements. It is nowadays being taken care of by the Police Department and the Scout Association, because everybody wants a piece of the fort pie.
Up until a couple of years ago, it was used as the Marsaskala Police Station, until eventually it was declared Cultural property of the Maltese Islands.
5. Tal-Bir Redoubt
This poorly-kept gem is almost completely depleted, but some of its walls still exist today. Tal-Bir was built in a pentagonal shape and had a small parapet underneath it too.
It was partially demolished to make room for a new hotel.
6. Ximenes Redoubt
This one is the most impeccably-kept redoubt on our islands. It was recently restored when roadworks on the Coast Road were being carried out. This is the first of the coastal fortstuffs the Knights built. One can still see Ximenes’ coat of arms over the doorway, since it was built during his reign.