The Royal Army Medical Corps
And the Malta Garrison

The Malta Garrison – 1919

Directorates of Hygiene and Pathology

In 1919, two new Directorates, one of Hygiene and another of Pathology, were created under the Director-General, Army Medical Services, as part of the War Office re-organization of the Army Medical Department.

Each directorate had its own advisory committee. The new administrative ranks of the department were:

  • Director of Hygiene (DH) – Brigadier-General
  • Director of Pathology (DP)
  • Deputy Director of Hygiene (DDH) – Colonel
  • Deputy Director of Pathology (DDP)
  • Assistant Director of Hygiene (ADH) – Lieutenant Colonel
  • Assistant Director of Pathology (ADP)
  • Deputy Assistant Director of Hygiene (DADH) – Major
  • Deputy Assistant Director of Pathology (DADP)

7 June Riots (Sette Giugno)

A riot broke out in Valletta on Saturday 7 June during the meeting of the National Assembly, when a crowd attacked the Union Club, the Governor's Palace and the University. It lasted until Tuesday when the new Governor, General Herbert Plumer arrived to take over the administration of Malta.

Protests arose over the increasing cost of food and widespread unemployment. University students also aired their grievances in connection with their degrees. The premises of the Malta Daily Chronicle were destroyed; a flour mill in Hamrun was looted. The military was called in to assist the police. Soldiers of the West Yorkshire Regiment fired on the crowd and used their bayonets to restore order; four were killed and eight injured. 32 Maltese were arrested in connection with the riots. Sentences were handed down ranging from 3 months to 7 years imprisonment with the Governor remitting 14 minor sentences.

On 22 June General Plumer declared that the Secretary of State Lord Milner was prepared to consider how far it was possible to grant the people of Malta an order to share in the administration, without impairing Imperial interests.

POW Malta January 1919

On 1 Jan 1919, 2078 Prisoners of War were held by the British in Malta. There were: Germans 1301, Austrians 318, Turks 312, Bulgars 23, Others 124.

In 1915, Captain D C L Fitzwilliams RAMC wrote A practical manual of bandaging. This was published in 1915 while he was serving at Malta as medical officer to 1,500 Prisoners of War of various nationalities, and while he was actively engaged in preparing orderlies for their duties in the field.

Awards Great War

On 28 Aug 1919 the following officers were brought to the notice of the Secretary of State for War for valuable services rendered in connection with the war:
Temp Maj T Mackenzie V D MD, Temp Maj C R Nicholson, Surg Maj A E Mifsud RMA, Surg Maj R Randon MD RMA.

In 1919, Prof Winifred Clara Cullis, Professor of Physiology at the University of London, was sent to Gibraltar and Malta to lecture to the troops. She was appointed OBE in recognition of this service.


In 1919, a commission was set up which modified some of the severe legislation regarding leprosy first enacted in 1893. Any person suspected of leprosy was examined by a medical board of officers and if found contagious was compulsory detained in the Leper Asylum. The Leper Hospital (St Bartholomew's Hospital), had a resident medical officers with the nursing carried out by the Sisters of Charity assisted by male and female nurses under the Medical and Health Department.

Royal Naval Hospital Bighi

After the Great War, Surgeon Rear Admiral George Trevor Collingwood CB RN was in charge of the British Naval Hospital Bighi.