Modernist Mayhem 1 - St. Joseph Parish Church, Manikata, Malta


Take a trip to one of Malta’s most beautiful architectural landmarks: St. Joseph Parish Church in Manikata it surely won’t leave you or your camera disappointed.

In 2009, a book named Modernist Malta: The Architectural Legacy (ISBN 978-999932-0-692-7) was published the Maltese National Trust and the Maltese Chamber of Architects and Civil Engineers. The book sought to bring attention to important, relatively recent buildings which quite often were left neglected and abandoned to suffer the unkind passing of time.

Today’s lomolocation, a landmark and a gem of Maltese architecture, is luckily not in such a state of disarray (although it does seem that since the photos in the book were taken, just under two years ago, the building has suffered some damage). The building in question is a church dedicated to St. Joseph and it belongs to the small rural village of Manikata only a few minutes away from Golden Bay ( It was designed by Maltese architect Richard England and it was built between 1962 and 1974.

Needless to say, due to its unorthodox design which recalls its rural setting and farmers’ corbelled huts, the church didn’t go down well with the locals. So much so that the Archbishop of the time even went as far as comparing it to a German submarine during its inauguration. Inevitably of course, since by any standards, the church is an architectural beauty, it soon went on to be featured in Architectural Review.

Although it is said that Malta has a church for every day of the year (yes that’s right not week, year: 365), as far as churches in Malta go this is by far the most memorable and beautiful one. If you happen to be in Malta, swimming at Golden bay, do take a 10 minute detour and walk around this arresting building – you surely won’t regret and neither will your camera.

If you’re interested in getting to know more about Maltese Modernist architectural landmarks, try get hold of a copy of the book Modernist Malta: The Architectural Legacy (ISBN 978-999932-0-692-7) published by the Maltese National Trust and the Maltese Chamber of Architects and Civil Engineers in 2009.

written by webo29 on 2011-02-16 #places #church #landmark #building #modern #location #malta #architecture #1960s #modernist


  1. zoezo
    zoezo ·

    cool pictures!

  2. -alia-
    -alia- ·

    cool church, interesting arch! Loved the photos*

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