The P29 is one of 2 wrecks found in Cirkewwa which is considered to be one of the most popular divesites in Malta. She acted as a former patrol boat for the Armed Forces of Malta and was then deliberately scuttled to become an artificial reef in the year 2007. Before being scuttled it is important to point out that she had been cleaned and made environmentally safe and for divers as well.
Lying 150 off off the Cirkewwa shore, the P29 is approximately the same distance from the MV Rozi Wreck. It’s specifications come at 34 metres in height and 52 metres in length. Her highest part sits at only 12 metres from the surface. Experienced divers are able to penetrate many areas of the wreck for them to explore. For those who are not certified to penetrate the wreck or simply wish not to enter, there is a myriad of marine life for you to see.
Normally, the P29 is dived from shore, however it could be dived off a boat. There is a visible yellow buoy which marks where the wreck is located. On the way to aid you in underwater navigation there are two landmarks which make it easier. The first one is a memorial stone which lays on sand and then along the way in memory of a British diver called Frank Pembridge, an old anchor on an area of sea grass.
Similarly, another wreck called the P31 Patrol Boat had been scuttled near Comino in shallower waters in the year 2009.
The P29 was built in 1969-70 for the German Navy. Number 18 of a total of 21 ships built, she was a Kondor I Class minesweeper. Her beam was 7m long and the whole ship weighed 361 tons. She was the last remaining Kondor I operatinf ro the German Coast Guard and was then decomissioned in 1996.
In 1997 she was sold to Malta and had been renamed P29. She had been re-joined by her sister ships Ueckermunde and Pasewalk which both were renamed the P30 and the P31. Her sister ships had been purchased by Malta previously in 1992.
The P29 served in the Armed Forces of Malta securing the coasts around the islands, doing border control and preventing smuggling. However, all three ships had been scuttled in they year 2004.
The next year in September 2005, the P29 had been bought by the MTA (Malta Tourism Authority) and was to be scuttled to become a diving attraction and an artificial reef. Arranged by the Malta Marine foundation the sinking of the P29 was arranged and carried out by Cassar Ship Repair. For environmental and diver safety purposes, it had been cleaned thoroughly where both engines had been removed.
Moreover, on the Morning of 14th August in 2007, she was towed to Cirkewwa from Marsa docks. She now sits upright at a maximum depth of 34 metres with her stern being the closest point to the coast and her bow pointing towards the deeper sea.
Depth: 20m (avg), 34m (max)
Shore access: Easy
Location: 35.9885°N 14.3261°E (Exact)