Volume 30

1Casa News from Spain - No. 30
 1Casa Estate Agency
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Fire in the Cerro de las Viñas – Álora
A fire damaged the slopes of the Cerro de las Viñas in Álora last Thursday (The top road from the Train station to Álora).
The first flames were noticed by a neighbour around 1.30 pm in the gorge below Trabanca House. The fire service arrived at the scene and were joined by many citizens, Paul Harrison and David from Imprenta Castille did a sterling job at the height of the blaze using hoses, water buckets and beaters to help put out the fire.
The Guardia Civil closed the access to Álora at the height of the fire. The fire was finally extinguished at around 5.00 pm in the afternoon.
As we write the cause is not known although the local police believe a cigarette butt thrown from a car to be the possible cause of the fire.
Flamenco Andalucia
An evening celebrating the history and evolution of Flamenco will be held in Álora on Monday 23 May 2005 at 9.00 pm at the Cervantes Theatre.
There will be singing from Manuel Lobo with guitar by Raul Cantizano.
An Exhibition of Photography
The photography of Norman Bethune will be exhibited at the Casa de Cultura in Álora from 16 May to 15 June 2005.
The exhibition is entitled the El Crimen de la Carretera (The Crime of the Road) and it portrays the events of February 1937 on the Málaga to Almería road.
Álora and Coín
Residents in Álora and Coín will soon be able to benefit from the single ticket scheme on local buses currently being used by their neighbours in Cártama, Pizarra and Alhaurín el Grande. The two Town Halls have the"bones" of an agreement with the Junta de Andalucía which should enable them to collaborate with the Malaga Metropolitan Area Transport Consortium. This will mean savings of up to 50 per cent on the bus fare to Malaga and to other towns within the metropolitan area.
Malaga Spring Bazaar
St. George’s Church in Malaga is holding its annual Spring Bazaar outside the church on Sunday May 22nd. On sale will be baked goods and preserves, books, clothes, gifts and white elephants. The bazaar starts at 12 noon after the morning service and continues until 3 p.m.
Real Estate Fraud Involving Foreigners Continues to Rise
Most of the swindlers are Britons targeting their fellow countrymen, selling building land that is not classified as such, more than 400 people have been arrested in the last three years.
Real estate fraud on the Costa del Sol is the order of the day - and the number of cases is growing. The police have discovered the existence of companies set up by foreigners on the coast with the sole aim of swindling their fellow countrymen over the sale of plots of land or the re-sale of time-share units.
A dozen of these companies have been discovered and dissolved since last year on the Costa del Sol.  They are mainly formed by Britons trying to sell plots to their compatriots, either as building land when it is not classified as such, or as their land when they are not the owners.
The cases detected in the last two years have mainly concerned plots of land in the Guardalhorce Valley and the Axarquía region, according to the chief of the Fraud Group at the Specialised Crime Squad of the National Police in Malaga, Juan Titos.
Over 400 people have been arrested in the last three years for these crimes, which have also been rife in municipalities such as Fuengirola, Mijas, Benalmádena and Marbella.
On occasions the fraud goes even further: once the initial swindle has been perpetrated the fraudulent company then telephones the victim again (using another name) and offers legal assistance on payment of a sum of money, with the promise that it will be returned.
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Tourists Maintain Spain at the Top
Spain's tourist industry continues to thrive according to figures released by the Official Tourism and Trade Ministry. In the first quarter of 2005 Spain received a record 13.6 million foreign tourists. This represents a five percent increase in international tourism compared to the same period in 2004 and they said, is the first time that more than 13 million tourists have visited Spain during the first four months of any year.
During April Spain received 4.2 million tourists from abroad, considered by the Ministry to be especially encouraging given the fact that this year Easter was in March, as opposed to last year when Holy Week was celebrated during April.
Catalunya heads the ranking of most popular Spanish region, in the first quarter 27.4 percent of tourists chose Catalonian destinations on the Costa Brava and inland. The Canary Islands was the second most popular region, followed by Andalucia and the Balearic Islands. 
Wife Swap
The producers of British television programme “Wife Swap” are looking for a family from the Costa del Sol expatriate community for their new series. According to the producers the ideal couple would be “Mr and Mrs British” and must be available over the next few months for filming and have children living at home. The programme is based on two wives swapping lives for ten days. For more information telephone +44 2070134585 or email holly.challinor@rdfmedia.com
ENDESA Reduces its CO2 Emissions in Spain by 27.5% Since 1990
At the same time its electricity output has more than doubled.
The Company's climate change strategy includes a broad set of initiatives aimed at enhancing energy efficiency. Endesa's target is to reduce specific CO2 emissions by 35% in 2007 compared to 1990 levels, the benchmark year for determining the Kyoto commitments.
ENDESA's specific emissions in Spain stood at 507 grams of CO2 per kWh in 2004, representing a fall of 27.5% compared to 1990. The company achieved this reduction despite increasing output by 120% over the same period and therefore overall total emissions rose from 33.4 million tones to 54.8 million.
Portugal, Spain to Unite in EU Affairs
Portugal and Spain will act in unison regarding the affairs of the European Union (EU) by unconditionally supporting each other's stand, said Portuguese Foreign Minister Diogo Freitas do Amaral on Friday.
Amaral made the pledge after meeting with his Spanish counterpart Miguel Angel Moratinos in the Portuguese capital.
Portugal, a major EU aid receiver, fears a lean EU budget will deprive Portugal of funds as the EU may shift its assistance to the newcomers of the bloc's enlargement, Amaral told a press conference, saying Spain will side with Portugal on the budget issue.
Moratinos, meanwhile, said Spain and Portugal will stand together in the EU, pledging his country will give a full support to Portugal on the budget issue.
New Security Measures for Flights in Spain
Under new security regulations in force in Spain from next weekend, all airlines will have to verify the identity of all their passengers on all their flights, be that international or national. Identity will now have to be confirmed on two occasions, once at check in, and again at boarding. The new regulations are in line with new EU guidelines on airport security.
Kylie in the Clear
Kylie Minogue has undergone successful surgery for early breast cancer at a Melbourne hospital, her surgeon said today.
"Her spirits are high and she's feeling fine," said Dr Jenny Senior, who operated on Minogue on Friday afternoon.
Breast cancer is the biggest cause of cancer deaths in Australian women, unlike the United States and Britain where it is second, behind lung cancer.
5 Companies in Talks about MG Rover
Administrators of MG Rover are talking to 5 companies interested in buying parts of the business and there was an outside possibility some form of production could resume at the giant Longbridge plant, it has been announced.
Interest in the sports car side of the firm has been narrowed down to three potential viable proposals while discussions for the sale of the rest of the business and assets were continuing with two "credible" interested parties.
Push-Button Aircraft Landing Hailed
The hair raising task of landing jump jets on ships in rough seas is now as easy as pressing a button, thanks to a break through unveiled by British inventors.
Defence technology experts QinetiQ have achieved the first ever automatic landing on a ship by a "short take-off vertical landing" aircraft.
Last Sunday their new "vector-thrust aircraft advanced control" system guided a Harrier jump jet onto the deck of HMS Invincible.
The advance will enable pilots to fly missions by day or night that would previously not have been possible, QinetiQ said.
As well as aircraft carriers the new technology could be installed on frigates and destroyers, even on helicopters, he added. It can be engaged up to 100 miles from the ship.
This break-through means precarious manual landings by battle-weary Harrier pilots in high seas will soon be a thing of the past. Now, all they need do is press a red button and let the equipment do the rest.
R Sociedad 1- 3 Málaga
Malaga took on Real Sociedad and came away victorious following a 1-5 defeat earlier in the season at home to the side from San Sebastián.  Both teams put in an entertaining display (at least for the visiting fans) as Málaga ran out 1-3 winners to draw level with their opponents in the table. Malaga are at home to Racing Santander this Sunday. Kick-off is a couple of hours later, at 7 p.m.
Barcelona Win Spanish League
Barcelona won the Spanish league for the 17th time in their history after drawing 1-1 with Levante with two games of the season still to play.
Spain Lose To Germany
Germany went one step nearer to the World Team Cup final Friday after beating Spain2-1.
The host nation, who last appeared in the final in 1988 when they beat the Czech Republic will face Argentina on Saturday.
Maradona in Madrid to Immerse Himself in Football
A slimline Diego Maradona arrived in Madrid on Monday saying he had put his health problems behind him and had come to Spain to catch up with old friends and immerse himself in football.
The former Argentina captain was besieged by reporters and cameramen awaiting his arrival on a flight from Cuba and took 15 minutes to leave the terminal building at Madrid's Barajas airport.
“I've come here to get to meet Ronaldo, Roberto Carlos and Arrigo Sacchi, Maradona told a news conference.
El Hechizado Wins the Mijas Cup
More than 12,000 people congregated at the Hippodromo Costa del Sol (Costa del Sol Racecourse) last Sunday for the Mijas Cup, one of the highlights of the Spanish racing season. The race was won by the favourite, El Hechizado, owned by the Duke of Alburquerque and ridden by jockey, J.Jarcovsky.
A Little Hilarity!
A Commercial pilot completed a bumpy landing, his job description stated he should say goodbye to all his passengers, he was concerned that he might be criticised for his Pilot skills but everyone left without comment apart from a lady who said "Did we land, or were we shot down?"
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