The restoration of the Salvatur on top of Merzuq Hill, Marsalforn, presented us with ourbiggest challenge so far. The present statue is the latest version of the image of Christ which replaced an older version in 1978. The first statue was actually erected in 1904 on this 97 meter high rock hill and thus the hill became popularly known as ‘Tas-Salvatur’.
Many legends surround this hill including the belief that it was once a volcano-an idea that has been dismissed by geologists. Another legend is that God punished Gozo by covering the island in darkness for three days after which a beam of light (a merżuq) appeared on the hill and thus its name.
Today's statue is a copy of the statue of Jesus the Redeemer found in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. It is made of concrete covered with fibreglass which gives it better weather resistance and has internal metal supports.
Works required included the repairing of physical damage such as the top of the head, the nose and foot of the statue and also the removal of unsightly vadalism such as writing and engraved graffiti.
Because of the inaccessibility of the site, all the required scaffolding, tools and equipement had to be transported to the top of the hill by helicopter and this was accomplished thanks to the Armed Forces.