75th Anniversary 'Operation Pedestal' 1942 - 2017
Operational Pedestal, better known as 'il-Konvoy ta' Santa Marija', was a World War II naval operation by the Allies in 1942 aimed at relieving Malta from starvation and a shortage of essential supplies, after the Islands had already suffered two years of incessant bombing by the Axis air forces.
Considering Malta's strategic location, the Allies were determined to provide the Island with essential supplies. In fact, no less than two battleships, seven cruisers, thirty-three destroyers and four aircraft carriers accompanied the 13 freighters and the tanker SS Ohio.
In spite of suffering huge losses, Operational Pedestal achieved its objectives as four freighters and one tanker reached Malta. Tanker SS Ohio arrived on the 15th August 1942 and thus the success of the convey remains synonymously celebrated with one of Malta's main feasts known as 'Santa Marija'.
The Stamp - The Siege Bell War Memorial
The 3.00 stamp depicts the Siege Bell War Memorial located near the Lower Barrakka Gardens, in Valletta. The memorial was designed by the renowned sculptor Michael Sandle and commemorates those who lost their lives throughout the siege of Malta between 1940 and 1943. The Siege Bell was erected in 1992 and attracts numerous daily visitors and strikes every day as a sign of respect towards those who fell in the defence of Malta and Gozo.