Impervious to the heavy rain, a troop of soldiers tasked with clearing the Queens and King’s Lines, was deployed at the Northern Defences last Sunday.

The operation saw modern-day Sappers, the descendants of the Royal Artificer Corps, assisting the Gibraltar Government in a major restoration project.

The Northern Defences is a key element of the military defensive network of walls, tunnels and bastions which has kept Gibraltar safe through numerous sieges.

This system of defences links Casemates Square all the way to Princess Amelia’s Battery in the Upper Rock Nature Reserve. A spokesman for the government said that it has invested in the site, which has been ‘neglected for decades’, for the last two years.

“It is gratifying to have reached a stage in this project where one can appreciate the magnitude and workmanship of the defences which have been buried for decades,” said Deputy Chief Minister Dr Joseph Garcia, who chairs the Inter-Ministerial Committee on the project.

“From a global perspective, these defences are second to none: any visitor can easily appreciate why the saying ‘As strong as the Rock’ is so apt. The defences not only allow us to be able to see into the past but they also provide Gibraltar with another world-class visitor attraction in a key location. The government is grateful to the Royal Engineers and to the Heritage Trust for their continued involvement.”

The Heritage Trust has praised the efforts of the Gibraltar Government in having the vision to invest in such an asset and will be assisting in organising tours of these newly exposed defences.