The Royal Army Medical Corps
And the Malta Garrison

The Malta Garrison – 1973


Malta Garrison

The floating of the British pound in the summer of 1972 led to the renewal of the crisis, when Mintoff demanded an extra £700,000 to make up for the fall in the value of the pound.

On 1 Jan 1973, Britain tried to pay £3.5 million as its quarterly rent for military bases in accordance with the Marlborough House Agreement of 26 Mar 1972. Mintoff refused to accept the money until an extra 10% was added. He once more threatened the expulsion of British troops.

In Jan 1973, there were 2,800 British troops, and 4,500 dependents in Malta. Britain made it clear to the Maltese Government that it would not maintain its troops in Malta against the wishes of the Maltese people. Contingency plans were prepared for a final withdrawal which would have taken three months to achieve and cost the UK Government over three million pounds.

The Royal Corps of Transport commenced the loading of empty packing cases on board the logistic landing ship Sir Percival at Marchwood, Southampton in preparation for the removal of the troops from Malta.

Italy intervened and attempted to broker an agreement. On 16 Feb 1973, Mintoff accepted Britain's first quarterly rent after NATO increased its contribution to compensate for the fall in the value of the floating pound.


  • No RAMC officers or Other Ranks