Home News Spanish National WEEKLY DIGEST – 18 AUGUST 2014


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Beach Lockers


The Valencia region endured the hottest day in the last two years on Sunday, with temperatures exceeding 41 degrees Celsius in some areas, according to the Spanish Meteorological Agency (Aemet). In Javea, with 41.5 degrees Celsius, it was the hottest since August 1, 2012, when temperatures reached 42 degrees, whereas in second place was Orihuela with 39 degrees, compared to August 12, 2012, when temperatures reached 40 degrees.


The Castillo de Santa Barbara in Alicante has had a record July, with 62,000 people visiting the historic attraction. The figure represents an increase of some 7,000 tourists compared to the same month of 2013, an increase of 12.72%. Use of the lift from the beachside to the top of the castle also increased, with 38,920 people paying a nominal fee to travel through the mountain heart, whereas in 2013, there were 29,900 users in the month of July. The current exhibition of Star Wars items, which you do have to pay to visit, has already attracted 28,000 people since it opened in April 11, with 8,000 of them in July alone.


The Alicante provincial council has approved grants totalling 176,200 euro, which will go towards improving the quality of drinking water in 56 municipalities. The grants are predominantly aimed at municipalities with fewer than 10,000 residents who have direct control of their water supply and will be offered during 2015.


Alicante council has announced that the 12th annual conference on dealing with violence towards women will be held on the 19th and 20th of November. Those wishing to attend have until the 31st of October to register, with more information on their website, www.congresoviolenciamujer.com.


The towns of Almoradí, Bigastro, Callosa de Segura, Dolores, Pilar de la Horadada, Rafal and Redován will all benefite from a share of 502,804.24 euro in grants being offered by the Alicante provincial council, aimed at improving green areas and natural parks in the municipalities. A total of 114,638.20 euro will come to the Vega Baja area, with the rest of the grants going to 37 municipalities around the province.


A 75 year old man was seriously injured Monday after the vehicle he was travelling in collided with two palm trees in Elche. The incident occurred at about 7pm on Monday, when he drove into the two trees on the CV-875, la carretera Vereda de Sendre. Following the impact the man was trapped inside the vehicle until released by through the back window.


A further 4 boats carrying 30 immigrants have landed on the coast of Alicante in the last 7 days bringing the number of arrivals processed by the Red Cross since 2007 to 277. Three of the recent boats arrived in Torrevieja and Pilar de la Horadada, last Friday morning with 30 people on board, 8 of which were minors.


Hundreds of drivers trying to reach La Manga were trapped last weekend by faulty traffic lights on the inappropriately named ‘Vía Rápida’ and on the Gran Via in La Manga itself. A spokesman explained that the problem was related to the computer system which reduced the time the traffic lights were green at cross roads. Traffic queues stretched back several kilometres with delays of many hours.


Police in Valencia have arrested an Irishman accused of throwing a suitcase full of cocaine, worth more than €3million, out of his eighth-floor hotel window. A receptionist alerted police after discovering the drugs scattered over an internal patio floor. Police are said to be working on the theory that the man confused noise from other guests with a rival gang trying to steal his drugs after suffering an attack of paranoia.


Plans from a Valencian businessman to open Spain’s first bondage hotel have been delayed following objections from locals. The hotel, inspired by the book Fifty Shades of Grey and due to include 20 S&M-themed rooms and a dungeon, was preparing to open last week in the village of Vilafranca but was prevented from doing so after its 2,500 inhabitants complained.


According to a survey carried out by the Mail on Sunday British shoppers at Aldi pay nearly double what they would in European outlets of the store. A basket of common groceries, including grapes, milk, chicken and wine, cost £44.92 in London, while the same items cost £23.13 in Marbella, £23.38 in Berlin and £26.64 in Paris. The Mail said the difference in price is all the more surprising because there is no VAT on most foods in Britain, unlike other European countries.


Beaches at the Mar Menor resorts of Los Urrutias and Punta Brava were invaded by thousands of jellyfish at the weekend making bathing impossible for holidaymakers. Nets would normally stop the invasion offshore, but reports indicate the lead weights which hold them down have been stolen, allowing the jellyfish to reach the beach. Cleaning brigades worked on Saturday and Sunday, but minutes after they finished the jellyfish were back.


Michael Gove’s wife has accused Nick Clegg of failing in his Government duty by going on holiday at the same time as David Cameron and as such Sarah Vine risked reigniting tensions between the Deputy Prime Minister and her husband with her criticism. Although the PM is now back in number 10 Mr Clegg remains in Spain with his wife Miriam and children visiting her family.


Spain has approved €7.5bn oil exploration project off the Canaries. Repsol estimates that the project could supply more than 100,000 barrels of oil a day, or 10 per cent of Spain’s energy consumption. At present, Spain has to import 99 per cent of the oil it uses, and has a foreign energy bill of €40bn a year.


Several hundred mourners joined a funeral service on Wednesday for Father Miguel Pajares, the Spanish priest who died from Ebola after being infected in Liberia, and so becoming the first European victim of the worst-ever outbreak of the virus.


Spain is blaming Morocco for giving the "green light" to migrants who are attempting to cross into Europe, as record number of migrants continue to arrive on their shores. The influx was blamed on the "permissiveness" of Moroccan authorities. "There is a human traffic jam building up there and Morocco wants to relieve the pressure," sources told Spain’s daily El Mundo newspaper. "Also they are nervous about Ebola


Spain´s Atresmedia Group, one of the leading providers of terrestrial TV and radio, has commissioned a Spanish version of home-repair reality show Cowboy Builders, in which two hosts highlight “shady” builders and try to find solutions to their problems. First aired in the UK in 2009 on Channel 5, the 10th season is due for transmission there next year.


Part of the earnings from this year´s Tomatina tomato fight in Buñol will be given to the Sahell association, a group which works with the Indian charity organisation Lokpanchayat, to provide and maintain safe houses for women in India. A campaign has been launched to coincide with the annual fiesta, which aims to highlight the atrocities faced by numerous Indian women. Tickets for the event had been restricted to 20,000, in order to control the number of people who attend the food fight each year. Meanwhile, as the food is thrown around for fun, it might be worth remembering that hunger remains the No.1 cause of death in the world and there are 820 million chronically hungry people in the world, a third of whom live in India. In West Bengal alone, around 100 workers in a single tea plantation have died this year from starvation related deaths.


Archaeologists have discovered what they believe to be a 1,000 year old Islamic burial ground in the town of Alcázar de San Juan in Ciudad Real, which they hope will reveal more information about the Islamic history of the region.


The Spanish Correos has hired a Canadian business transformation expert, in a bid to improve Spain´s postal network. Todd Hooper has previously worked on a modernisation project for retail giant Carrefour, and will bring “extensive” knowledge of the retail arena, particularly in the field of improving customer experience, according to a statement by Correos.


Mobile phone operator Orange is reported to be looking to sell around 9,400 of its mobile phone masts in Spain, which experts think could provide 885 million euro in revenue. Orange has been suffering a loss of clients, with the second quarter of the year only bringing them 943 million euro, a drop of 4.7%.


Two out of five IMAX cinemas in Spain are to close almost immediately, after failing to make a profit since they opened. The Teatromax cinemas in Madrid and Barcelona will shut their doors permanently, leaving just three in the country at Palma de Mallorca, Valencia and Leganes. Changing domestic technology and an inability for the cinemas to keep up is said to be the reason for the closure. The first IMAX cinema launched in Seville in 1992, only to close its doors in 2005.


New, state-of-the-art beach lockers have started to appear on the Orihuela Costa, aimed at providing better security for beachgoers, who are able to lock their valuables away, rather than risk leaving them on the beach.

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