The Friends of Gibraltar recently presented a cheque for £3,767 to the Gibraltar National Archives (GNA) for a roller cartographic scanner to be used for their ongoing Digitisation Project.

The Friends Vice Chairman, Mr Albert Poggio, said that the Friends are delighted to be associated with this very important programme which will make key historic cartographic collections, numbering about 5,000 and dating from the 14th Century, readily available via the GNA website to researchers, school children, and those with a general interest. It will ensure that the precious source documents will no longer be handled so often and be preserved for many future generations.

Following the cheque presentation, the Friends of Gibraltar representatives were given a tour of the GNA facilities by the Archivist, Anthony Pitaluga. The old maps in particular provided a fascinating insight to the history of Gibraltar.

The Deputy Chief Minister, Dr Joseph Garcia, thanked the Friends of Gibraltar for their kind donation: ‘This generous donation will assist the team at the Gibraltar National Archives as they continue their historically important Digitisation Project. In the past year alone the project has produced a public exhibition, Mapping Our Past, and contributed key documents and insights to the Referendum 50 celebrations. I am delighted that the project will now expand to allow the public, researchers and schools to easily access important sources for the first time.

This donation from the Friends of Gibraltar follows on from one which funded the highly successful restoration of the Frescos in the Convent and precedes one to Holy Trinity towards the restoration of the Organ there. This year the Friends report that they have allocated over £11,700 towards a variety of projects and awards associated with Gibraltar and believe that, within their level of resources, they are making a difference in Gibraltar. An ambitious programme also exists for 2018/19.