Ongoing works on the Coast Road have uncovered a Punico-Roman tomb, agricultural trenches, a fougasse and the remains of a late Roman structure, among other discoveries now being monitored by archaeologists.

The Superintendence of Cultural Heritage said it had been monitoring the entire stretch of road between Pembroke and Salina since the road development began last April.

One of the major discoveries was an ancient rock-cut tomb from the Punico-Roman period close to Pembroke, particularly uncommon in that it was cut into a natural terrace facing the sea. The tomb will now be preserved in a new roundabout.

A tomb was found, particularly uncommon for its being cut into a natural terrace facing the sea

Beyond Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, archaeologists discovered a series of agricultural trenches, often referred to as vine trenches, evidence of a long history of wine production in the area.

Vine trenches around Malta have been dated back to Roman times, but are known to have been in use in the early 20th century.

Another notable discovery was an 18th-century fougasse, a large mortar canon hewn in the rock, close to Qalet Marku tower. The Knights of St John are known to have projected a total of 50 fougasses for Malta, and 14 for Gozo, but only eight surviving examples, including the new discovery, have been uncovered in Malta and six in Gozo.

The Cultural Heritage Superintendence said the Coast Road will be diverted to ensure the preservation of the Qalet Marku fougasse, which will now be accessible to visitors as part of the coastal area.

At Salina, a number of important archaeological remains and historic buildings are also being monitored closely.

Foremost among these are the Sukkursu canal, which surrounds the salt pans, the remains of part of the Ximenes redoubt and possible harbour remains dating to Late Antiquity.

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