Category: News

New Leroy Merlin store on the coast

On Thursday, the Mayor of Orihuela, Emilio Bascuñana, opened the new Leroy Merlin store that has
just been purpose built in Orihuela Costa. A sister store to the main DIY superstore at Zenia
Boulevard, the new branch in La Regia specialises in building supplies.
Bascuñana stressed that "this opening is another example of the fact that the trade in Orihuela is a
living sector in full development, and that it also brings new jobs to our city." The Oriolan Mayor was
accompanied by the Councillor for Commerce, Miguel Ángel Fernández, and the deputy mayor,
Rafael Almagro. There were also several senior representatives from Leroy Merlin including: the
manager of Leroy Merlin La Zenia , Gonzalo Rodríguez, the regional director of the Southeast zone,
José Luis Ramírez, the director of Development of Leroy Merlin Spain, Juan Sevillano, the head of
Expansión, Borja Arambarri and the director Leroy Merlin also attended. La Zenia, Antonio Javier

International child’s day celebrated

Six schools took part in Torrevieja’s celebration of the international day of the
child on Monday 20 th November.
The mayor reminded everyone at the end of the performance that although
there has been progress, on this day we should remember those children who
are still denied their rights and remain disadvantaged. ‘We must work every
day for their welfare and development.’
Altogether there are 54 children’s rights recognised by the Children’s Rights
Convention. The evening’s entertainment was opened by children from Cuba
Primary school who sang a song about some of these rights. The Alpe school
includes children with disabilities and thirteen boys and girls from here danced
and used sign language to protest against discrimination.
Five pupils from IES Mediterráneo became ‘doctors’ for the evening to provide
advice on living a healthy life. Their performance, based on article 24 of the
convention, reminded the audience of the rights that all children have to
receive healthcare.
Acequión Primary School had constructed a magic machine to provide
solutions to problems and representatives across the age range from five
years old offered ideas for making the world a better place.
The fourteen pupils from Salvador Ruso Primary School sang about
discrimination to a piano accompaniment from one of their teachers. Finally,
Ciudad del Mar closed the event with a shadow theatre production with nine
students portraying the fear and anguish in which victims of bullying can live
their lives.

Domestic violence up 50 percent in Orihuela

The Councillor for Equality of the City of Orihuela, Sabina Galindo was at the forefront of recent
events commemorate the International Day Against Gender Violence. The programme began on
Friday when a purple ribbon – the emblem of the cause – was tied to the façade of the Town Hall.
The weekend saw a march Against Gender Violence from the Town Hall to the Gabriel Miró
roundabout, where manifestos were read and a video made by the council was screened, showing
all those involved in the fight against Gender Violence across the municipality. A Social Forum and a
mass were also held as part of the initiative.
The councillor said: “It is not enough just to participate in the commemorative events every 25 th
November; the awareness of this scourge must be of a permanent nature, and we cannot allow
situations of gender violence to occur, not one more. "
The council also presented the statistics of Gender Violence in the municipality, collected in the last
year by the Service of Attention to Gender Violence (SEMAVIG), which offers comprehensive care to
women who are or may be in a situation of gender-based violence and minors under parental
authority, guardianship and custody of female victims of gender violence.
This year a total of 93 interventions have been registered, which is approximately an increase of 50
percent on the previous period. Of these women, 10 of them requested information and advice, and
83 are part of the multidisciplinary intervention program of this municipal service, through which the
victim is assisted and also offered psychotherapeutic care programs.
There are 24 women who have accessed this program after having filed a previous complaint, and 9
of them who never have previously done so.
In the case of psychological treatment programs, 60 percent of women attended to decided to
access these rehabilitation programs, counting a total of 68 women, 18 of whom have joined this
year. Likewise, a treatment session has been started in a support group format, which has 6 women
participants, in addition to providing psychological help to 12 children.
The majority of these women are Spanish (46), followed by other nationalities: European (19), South
American (10), African (7) and Asian (1), which, in the words of the councillor, "shows that Gender
violence is something universal, which occurs in all countries of the world, regardless of the
economic situation, the level of development and the political regime of the place”.
The majority of women helped are from downtown Orihuela (39), followed by districts (25) and the
coast (19). The majority of interventions have been carried out for women between the ages of 30
and 50 (49), 22 of whom are under 30 years of age, and two of these are under 18 years of age. Of
these, 50 percent have medium-high educational levels (bachelor's degrees, training cycles or
university studies), with 63 percent of the women in a situation without resources (unemployed or
students), for which the situation of cohabitation as a couple, economic dependence and children in
common are an added handicap to getting out of an abusive situation.

Cala Cerrada tidy up

The city council’s Department for Beaches, which is led by the Councillor Luisa Boné of the
Ciudadanos party, is currently carrying out construction work on the beach Cala Cerrada and
as part of the regeneration programme is planning the relocation of the municipal waste
"These containers are currently located on the seafront of La Zenia and we intend to
relocate them to the nearby garden area to enhance the landscape and the aesthetic look of
the seafront promenade, whilst still facilitating the work of the municipal garbage collection.
Once relocated, these waste containers will then receive a wooden panelled screen, so that
they aesthetically fir better into the landscape," the Councillor said.
She added that with these works, the pedestrian pavements and walkways and the
landscaping and overall look of a beautiful beach like Cala Cerrada will improve as will the
overall perception of Orihuela Costa.
With a cost estimate of 5,000 euros plus VAT, these works are expected to be completed by
the end of next week.

New Radars For Motorbikes Coming Soon

The DGT has announced that they have just spent 860,130 euro on portable speed detecting
equipment which can be transported on the motorbikes of the Guardia Civil.
The plan to buy the equipment had already been announced some time ago, but the budget has now
been allocated which has allowed the purchase of about 60 devices which will allow more speed
control check points to be set up and with greater ease for the officers.
Although the information has often been misreported as the motorbikes having radar equipment
installed, these devices are used by the roadside, standing on a tripod, in much the same way as
some of the existing equipment, although these are small enough to be carried in the panniers of the
The investment was first proposed last year, based on the fact that during 2016, 300 people were
killed in incidents where inappropriate speed was a factor. Budget restrictions prevented the
purchase previously but now the money has been set aside and the order made, and so delivery,
training and implementation of these new devices is expected to happen as soon as possible.
This is part of the overall road safety plan that will see an increase in drug controls by 50% before
2018, and for all motorbikes to carry these new speed detectors as part of their safety arsenal.

Choosing Workshops and Garages

The key to safer driving not only lies in the hands of those on the roads, but also in the hands of those
responsible for carrying out work on our vehicles.
Although the authorities do everything they can to close them down, there are still many garages and
workshops that are not authorised to carry out any form of vehicle repair, and although many of them
do a good job perhaps for less money, there are many who put all road users at risk.
An illegal workshop is a fraudulent business model, often conducted on unlicensed premises, and often
without the requisite regulatory permits, access to technical information on vehicles or the approval
from vehicle manufactures to carry out repairs. They often also fail to comply with health and safety and
environmental legislation and often carry out work without issuing invoices and without any form of
The frightening fact is that according to official sources, although no official figures exist, it is estimated
that 20% of workshops across Spain are currently operating without the relevant licenses. A situation
exacerbated by the economic crisis, which has led many consumers to turn to these fraudulent
workshops, attracted by lower prices, without being fully aware of the consequences.
Inferior work, low price and unofficial parts, cheap labour and a lack of guarantee all undermine the
rights of a consumer, and is a practice punishable by law.
On the other hand, legal and approved workshops have the necessary machinery and the right tools for
repairs, access to the most up to date technical information for vehicle, they only use approved and
traceable spare parts, guarantee repairs through the production of an invoice and provide continuous
training for their employees.
Therefore, only the legal establishments can ensure proper handling of the vehicle, resulting in
increased road safety by reducing the risk of accidents.
The technical information of the vehicle provides the guidelines set by the manufacturer to ensure
proper handling and repair, minimizing risks, ensuring optimal performance and extending its life. Only
legally established workshops have access to this guide to ensure proper repairs of each model vehicle.
The traceability of parts refers to garages being able to ensure the origin. In a legally established
workshop the consumer can be sure that the piece is approved, which is required for that type of car
that has all manufacturer warranties. In illegal workshops where it is not traceable, installed parts can
have very varied origins including from crashed or scrapped vehicles and sometimes through theft.
Due to the increasing complexity of vehicles it is essential that mechanics attend training courses that
are held periodically that provide the guidelines for the proper repair of all types of vehicles. The
mechanics are quickly outdated if they do not receive these courses, which only legal workers can have
access to.
The question of course is how does one identify an illegal workshop? Unfortunately, they are not always
easy to recognise, but there are some tell-tale signs to look out for.
A legal workshop will always provide a printed quote for work in advance, and will also provide an
invoice and guarantee afterwards.
Illegal workshops are usually in places where they work behind closed doors, sometimes in garages of
private homes, sometimes even in the street.
The most important clue of all is that official and legally approved workshops have a nameplate granted
by the Ministry of Industry and are required to display this plate at the property entrance. Illegal
workshops will have no such accreditation displayed.
The nameplate will display a variety of information relating to the work that can be done at the
workshop. For example, the top part of the plate will display the type of work which can be done on the
premises. A picture of a wrench indicates mechanics, a jagged arrow indicates electrics, a hammer is for
bodywork and a spray gun for painting.
Halfway up, on the left are icons which indicate areas of expertise, such as wheels and tyres, radiators or
injection engines for example. To the right, an image will be displayed if the workshop is authorised to
repair motorcycles.
Finally, at the bottom of the plate, there is a space which will display the provincial hallmark and the
official registration number of the workshop as provided by the Ministry of Industry.
Although it will be difficult to ensure your complaints are heard in the event of using an illegal
workshop, there is a way of reporting your suspicions to the authorities to investigate and take action
against illegal operators. This can be done on the website of the confederation of Spanish workshops.
CETRAA, at denuncia/

Man arrested for trying to torch a house with three children inside

A man has been arrested in the Costa Blanca town of Dolores for attempting to set the residence on fire while three minors were inside the property at the time. The suspect is said to have sprayed the ground floor of the property with gasoline. Family members called 112 and thankfully, police arrived at the scene before the man was able to ignite the fire. On learning that emergency services were en route, the man fled the scene.
The incident occurred late on Tuesday at a house in the centre of Dolores. Security sources report that the three children were on the top floor of the house while the man was dousing the ground floor in petrol. Relatives raised the alarm and called emergency services before the man made his escape.
Officers from the Local Police and Guardia Civil rushed to the address to secure the scene and ensure the safety of the children who were described as being “afraid, but in good physical condition”. The officers made safe the property and ventilated all the rooms to get rid of the fumes. Meanwhile, a team of officers searched Dolores throughout the night for the suspect who was arrested in the early hours of Wednesday morning when he presented himself at the Guardia Civil barracks.  Another man was also arrested for obstruction of justice and both are expected to appear in court today (Wednesday).

Forty tapas and gin-tonics to taste on the Orihuela route

The Councillor for Tourism, Sofía Álvarez, has hosted the tapas and gin-tonics of the
participating establishments at the Municipal Library María Moliner. The event saw all the
dishes presented and allowed those present to sample them before the tapas route opens.
This year will see the city run its fifth annual Route of the Tapa and Gin-tonic, which will take
place in the streets of Orihuela from 10th to 12th November.
The councillor has declared her satisfaction with the high participation this year, in addition
to emphasising the strong commitment from the area and explained she wants the event to
“use Orihuela’s gastronomy as a promotional tool abroad along with our historical, heritage,
festive and natural tourism potential of our city.”
As a novelty, this year the establishments have been able to create and present several
tapas, in different categories. Supporters of the event can download the mobile app
‘Rutappa’ where they can get details of the varieties of tapas and gin-tonics, in addition to
all the information regarding the event. The app also allows people to vote for their
favourite tapa and gin.
A total of 25 establishments are registered, and prizes will be awarded in five categories:
Gourmet Tapa, Sweet Tapa and Traditional Tapa. A prize wll alos go to the establishment
with the most votes for its Gin-tonic through the mobile application, and a special prize will
be awarded to one of the members of the public who use the app to vote.
The official jury will comprise representatives of the companies sponsoring the event, along
with three gastronomic experts: Carlos Corredor, director of the Gastronomic Guide of
Alicante; Antonio Marquerie, professor and director of the International Chair of
Mediterranean Gastronomy of the Catholic University of Murcia; and José Antonio Sánchez,
manager and chef of the restaurant Els Vents de Alicante, aspiring to a Michelin Star.
The price of the traditional drink and tapa will be 1 euro, while the tapas in the sweet and
gourmet category will cost 1.50, leaving the price of gin-tonic to be allocated by the

Charity fair in Torrevieja

Councillor Carmen Morate has advertised the next charity fair event. It will
take place on Saturday 28 th October in the Paseo Marítimo Juan Aparicio – by
the Hombre del Mar right on the sea front next to the port car park. It’s an
opportunity for different charitable organisations to set up stalls, display goods
to sell and advertise the different ways in which people can volunteer to help
The fair will take place from 10am until 2pm and is a good opportunity for
charitable associations to raise awareness and Councillor Morate hopes to
see as many voluntary groups there as possible. There will be a number of
activities taking place during the morning too, including a zumba class led by
‘Angie’ at 10am.
There will be a small dog parade of homeless dogs from Torrevieja’s animal
shelter and a gym show at 1pm. ‘Everyone is welcome to come along with
their sports shoes and spend a fun and healthy hour with us,’ explained the
During the morning there will be a collection of food for refugee camps in the
Sarah organised by the FANS association. You can bring along non-
perishable food items such as rice and pasta, tins of tuna, oil, sugar etc. Baby
wipes would also be appreciated as a donation.

Art competition

– a lovely, lively day
The Ray Scott Art Competition and Exhibition 2017 was a lively day last
Tuesday at La Herradura in Los Montesinos with more than 80 paintings
on display over 40 were entered into the Competition with approximately
the same amount in the Exhibition.  One hundred plus visitors came to La
Herradura and once again they were invited to submit The People´s
Choice this went to Glyn Whiting for Dog Tired who also took first place
with this painting in the category "People".  There are almost too many
winners to mention but the other first places went to Elaine Sissons,
Gladys Marsh, Pat Whelton, Nicola Moran, Pamela Heathcote and
Susanne Sayers.  There will be a full list of winners placings,
commendation certificates and photographs by Kristoff on the Facebook
pages Elche Children´s Care Home and Susan Reader.
Many thanks to our three judges this year Suzanne Stokes, Gloria Howes
and Roger McCrea they take on a very difficult job and the time they gave
is much appreciated.  Special thanks go to Jackie Nevin who did all of the
admin work and liaised with the artists, and to helpers on the day Abi
Johnson, Lynn Nicholls, Judy Denny and Jennie Lowe.  Thanks also go to
Avalon our main sponsor of this event and all of the many companies on
the logo board who all sponsored the prizes and certificates.  Plans are
already underway for The Ray Scott Art Competition 2018 so stalwart
artists and hopefully new artists please get painting!

Marcha por la Vida

On Sunday 15 th October it was the ‘Marcha por la vida’ or walk for life that
took place on Torrevieja’s sea front. Although it is an annual event, this year it
seemed to attract more people than ever; keen to demonstrate their solidarity
when it comes to the fight against cancer.
The crowd began to gather at 11am with people meeting around the Hombre
del Mar as well as further up the paseo. There were plenty of pink t-shirts on
display with people having already reserved theirs in advance. Last year they
actually ran out on the day. It was very much a family occasion with mums,
dads and children and pink was everywhere.
People had come up with lots of ideas for spreading the word, including pink
ribbons in children’s hair and dogs sporting bink bows too. Those people who
had registered were given a bottle of water and a pink scarf which could also
be seen on a few pets who accompanied the walkers.
It wasn’t just those who had already registered who turned up. Many people
arrived and bought their t-shirt to take part on the day. This swell in numbers
means that there could have been as many as 600 people there. The
numbers are growing every year.
The walkers were a little late in setting off due to the arrival of so many at the
last minute. The anticipated start time of 11.30am was delayed for perhaps 20
minutes whilst the final participants were registered. The police were there to
escort those taking part on the march to Las Columnas and back.
Jenny Dodd was one of those taking part; ‘There were lots of puzzled looking
northern Europeans wondering what was going on,’ she says. ‘But also quite
a few puzzled Spaniards who are visiting for the holiday period. It was very
hot, especially in the t-shirt and it was just as well that a breeze got up as we
set off.’
The money raised from the day will go towards the AECC (La Asociación
Española Contra el Cáncer) and following the turnout, the event is expected
to have raised a significant amount.

Spanish equine sanctuary rescues yet another skeletal pony, confirming disturbing trend

A severely malnourished pony stallion showing signs of physical abuse is now in the care
of Easy Horse Care Rescue Centre in Rojales, Spain.
Rescued from the streets of Algorfa in conjunction with Almoradí police on September 21,
the pony known as Fudge is the sixth rescued by the sanctuary in five months, confirming
an alarming trend of ponies being abandoned in public places.
“When we started the centre nine years ago, we were rescuing animals that had been
locked away and left to starve,” said Easy Horse Care co-founder Sue Weeding. “Now,
they’re literally being dumped in the streets.”
The influx of ponies is putting the centre under increasing financial pressure as it looks to
provide the medical attention and care each abused equine needs.
“They all come to us needing castration and with a whole host of health problems,” said
Sue. “We pride ourselves on caring for them properly. We don’t just give them a bit of food
to keep them alive.”
The latest rescue, which has gained international attention, was found in a skeletal state,
with a massive infection in one eye and showing signs of what could well be deliberate
physical abuse. A visible scar on his neck suggests Fudge suffered a significant blow that
left two of his vertebrae broken, causing him to walk with a wobbly gait.
Donations to help cover Fudge’s rehabilitation costs are gratefully received and can be
made online: donation.
“This old boy is about 20 years old and it's absolutely heartbreaking to think what he’s
suffered through,” said Sue. “It will be a time game for this fellow and we'll just take it one
step at a time. Whatever the outcome, we will give him anything and everything he needs,
and a whole lot of love on top.”
Miniature ponies like Fudge can live well into their thirties, so once he’s had time to grow in
strength, Fudge’s infected eye will be surgically removed and he’ll also be castrated. But in
the short time since he arrived at the centre, he’s already shown remarkable improvement.
“When we arrived to rescue him, he wouldn’t even lift his head,” explained Sue. “Now he
calls out to us and eats all day. I think he believes he’s in paradise now.”
Fudge’s rescue takes the total number of equines at the sanctuary to 108. While Sue and
her husband Rod Weeding continually work to re-home their rescues, they worry that
without other options, the number of equines in their care will only continue to grow.
“The situation is dire, because if we don’t take them, they’ll stay where they are,” said Sue.
“And how can we, as caring people, say no when there’s no one else?”
The Easy Horse Care Rescue Centre relies entirely on donations to fund its important
animal welfare work, including the feeding and care of the centre’s horses, ponies and
donkeys rescued from abuse, neglect and abandonment.
Donations of cash or items for the centre’s network of six charity shops across the Alicante
province are gratefully welcomed. A pick-up service is available to collect large donated
items such as furniture and each shop also offers a delivery service for large items
purchased in-store.
The Easy Horse Care Rescue Centre, located just outside Rojales at Partido Lo Garriga,
59, opens to the public on the first Sunday of every month between 1pm and 4pm. Free
horse tours run throughout the afternoon and refreshments are available in the café. For
more details and directions, please visit