Updated 12pm - Added video

A three-year project to restore the facade of St John's co-Cathedral has been completed just in time for the start of Valletta's European Capital of Culture celebrations. 

The €660,000 project covered an area of 2,000 square metres and saw restorers clean the facade's stonemasonry and restore the co-Cathedral's towers and clocks. 

While cleaning the clocks, restorers  uncovered the script 'Clerici in Vernt', which they believe is a reference to the clockmaker. 

Only the centre part of the co-Cathedral facade has been restored, with its sides pencilled in to get a facelift once the St John's co-Cathedral museum is completed. 

Wilfred Buttigieg, who leads the St John co-Cathedral Foundation, told the press that the foundation had plans to illuminate both flanks of the church facade. 

Aerial footage of the restored co-Cathedral facade.

Although not originally listed as a Valletta 2018 infrastructural project, the facade restoration has been timed to coincide with the capital's year-long cultural project and Valletta 2018 Foundation chairman Jason Micallef was present for the Monday morning unveiling. 

An inauguration ceremony to be held on Saturday will feature projections and a 140-strong choir, although the co-Cathedral is hosting a Baroque Festival concert on Monday evening.

The co-Cathedral was designed by Ġlormu Cassar and opened in 1577. An estimated 500,000 tourists visit it every year. 

Clocks have been cleaned and restored.Clocks have been cleaned and restored.


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