Police stop show at Villamartin Plaza

Thursday saw Villamartin Plaza host its end of summer finale, with a number of local acts set to entertain the audience, culminating with local favourites The Cages. However, the proceedings were brought to a swift close after police received a complaint that Covid restrictions were being breached and therefore people’s health put at risk.
The police arrived, armed with tape measures and soon found that some bars and restaurants were not complying with the national law, which stipulates reduced capacity and a distance of 1.5m from chair-back to chair-back. There were also concerns that people were moving between tables without wearing a mask, which is also illegal in Spain.
The police posted a comment on their social media pages saying that the ‘concert, which had attracted more than 250 people, had been closed for contravening the regulations’.
Unfortunately, the actions of the few spoiled the occasion for the many. Casey Shaddock, President of Villamartin Plaza, had worked hard to gain all the relevant permissions from the Generalitat Valenciana to ensure that the event was a success.
Casey told the Costa Blanca People: “The terraces are rented by each individual establishment and they of course manage the space as an extension of their business. It was heartbreaking as most were sticking to the rules, but the police found some irregularities. There were no denuncias issued on the night but the police did stop the music as they said it fuelled the party atmosphere and encouraged a disregard for the rules. They said they would return periodically to make sure the restrictions were being followed.”
Obviously, people were disappointed and there followed a considerable discussion on social media. However, the authorities in Spain have made the rules quite clear and all businesses, bars and restaurants know exactly what they are and how they affected their particular business. These restrictions are not new and have been in place since August.
Of course the concern is that if bars and restaurants continue to flout the rules, then these measures could be increased. Orihuela Costa is very lucky to continue to have an entertainment allowance at all. In neighbouring areas such as Quesada and San Miguel there is a no music policy.