The Malta Independent 21 May 2024, Tuesday
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Government purchases the Soċjetà Sant' Andrija band club in Lija for €3.6 million

Friday, 10 May 2024, 11:06 Last update: about 11 days ago

The Soċjetà Sant`Andrija band club of Ħal Lija joins nine other buildings which are occupied by musical societies to have been purchased by the Government.

The Ministry for National Heritage, Arts, and Local Government said that there are also two other properties from which other musical societies operate that the Ministry is in the process of a convention with their private owners through the Malta Arts Council.

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The other nine properties which have been purchased are the headquarters of the Soċjetà Mużikali Marija Reġina Marsa A.D.1977, the headquarters of the Għaqda Mużikali Stella Levantina of Ħ’Attard, the headquarters of Circolo San Giuseppe Filarmonika Sagra Familja of Kalkara, the headquarters of the Soċjetà Każin Santa Liena Banda Duke of Connaught’s Own ta’ Birkirkara, the headquarters of the Soċjetà Mużikali Antoine de Paule of Raħal Ġdid, the headquarters of the Soċjetà Mużikali Stella Maris of Sliema, the headquarters of the Għaqda Mużikali San Pietru of Birżebbuġa, the headquarters of the Għaqda Soċjo-Mużikali Anici of Ħal Qormi and the Soċjetà Filarmonika Santa Marija Mosta of which the Government is now the owner of the main building from which these societies work.

“All these twelve societies were at a very serious risk of eviction due to the legal situation linked to the pre-1995 rent laws,” the Ministry for National Heritage said.

Minister Owen Bonnici said that these musical societies play a crucial role in fostering cultural development and social progress among families, and that it is often people who are active within these musical societies who spur on initiatives which promote art, education, social welfare, and environmental conservation within the various communities.

He added that these organisations are dependent on the spaces they occupy in order to effectively carry out their work, and so therefore an eviction would threaten their existence entirely aside from seriously endangering their work.

The Soċjetà Sant`Andrija of Ħal Lija was acquired with a total spend of €3.6 million. The government is expected to spend a total of €19 million in these musical societies, considering the amount which has already been spent in acquiring the previously listed ten properties as well as the amount yet to be invested to acquire the other two aforementioned properties, for which a final contract has yet to be made.

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