Volume 39

1Casa News from Spain - No. 39
 1Casa Estate Agency
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Feria of Alora
The annual Feria of Alora begins next Wednesday 3 August until Sunday 7 August 2005.
Covered Swimming Pool - Alora
Approval has been granted for a new covered swimming pool in Alora.  The works on the covered pool will begin at the end of year and they will cost €1.3 million.
Alora - Network of Cities of Climate
The Ayuntamiento of Alora has given its approval to become involved with the Spanish Network of Cities of Climate, following a report by the councillor of Environment, María Isidora González.  The councillor emphasized that from now on she will try to establish guidelines on measures to reduce the contamination by traffic, increase green areas, reserve land for tree plantations or the creation of practices incorporating renewable energy.
Un-Licensed Construction
Illegal houses are the main problem for the Councils in the Valle del Guadalhorce; an easy solution is not foreseen. After the demolition of a house in Cártama, the debate about illegal construction in the countryside is wide open again. In Cártama alone the number of illegal houses could easily reach the 3.000. The Mayor of Alora thinks the figure may be in the region of 600 to 700 houses without the appropriate license.
Jose Sánchez said he does not want to demolish any house but the law is the law and we all must to comply with it.
New Hospital for Pizarra
After three years of construction, Pizarra now has a public medical centre. The plans for the parking area beside the new building are now in the process to be approved. The parking will be built underground and will have room for 200 cars.
New Fire Service for Guadalhorce Valley
The Valle del Guadalhorce will have a new fire service in a 10.500 square metres plot in Sierra Gorda (Coin). This new service will cover an area that comprises 15 towns with a population of more than 120.000 inhabitants. The cost is about 700.000 Euros for the + 270.000 Euros for a fire precautions school.
Shortage of Water
The reservoirs in the Valle de Abdalajís are running out of water because of the work carried out for the AVE. In some places in the country the people have to bring water from the town because that the only way to have water supply at home. The Mayor of Valle de Abdalajís Tomás Gómez is alarmed about this problem and reiterates that it was caused by the tunnel work in during March.
La Cancula Project
The project for La Cancula is the most ambitious and important one in the history of Alora. There is a normal delay in the works because of the bureaucracy but very soon the surveys and tests will commence for the structural calculations. Then the Architects Authority in Málaga will inspect and accept the plans. After that final and legal step, we hope that two years hence the project will be finished.
Mayor of Alora Voices Water Concerns
"The water is the gold of the future" said José Sánchez, Mayor of Alora. He also said that "the Town Hall is not obliged to supply water to rustic areas" Actually the building licenses granted before the new law stated this fact clearly. However, the situation could change if the owners in specific areas get organized and decide to pay for themselves the work necessary to take the water from the public deposit to their homes.
Malaga Airport
The rise in tourists visiting Malaga has meant that the number of passengers at Malaga airport has also increased. The first 6 months of the year shows a 6.8% increase in comparison to 2004. Internal flights have gone up, matched by international flights, which have experienced a 4% rise. The total number of tourists arriving or departing from Malaga airport during the first 6 months of 2005 is 5.8 million.
New Wine Museum in Malaga
The number of museums in Malaga is going to increase thanks to the new Museo del Vino (Wine Museum), which is to open in November, once the 18th century baroque building in which it is to be housed has been renovated. The ground floor will exhibit a collection of 1,000 labels of Malaga wine and sultanas and a shop in which to buy wine. The first floor will be dedicated to showing how the grape juices are made and the machinery that was used in the past. There will also be a wine-tasting room.
Oxford and Cambridge Rowers to Compete in Malaga
Malaga is preparing for a new sporting event. On Thursday August 11th rowers from the English universities of Oxford and Cambridge will be on the Costa del Sol to take part in what will be the first annual Oxford-Cambridge-Malaga International Rowing Regatta.
Representatives of the two universities will challenge rowers from Malaga’s own Real Club Mediterráneo as well as putting on a number of demonstrations. Spectator stands will be set up in Malaga Port so that everyone can enjoy a good view of the events taking place.
The regatta is due to start at 6.30 p.m. and events will conclude at around 9 p.m.
Spain Bans Smoking and Fires in Countryside
Under new government rules aimed at curbing the risk of fires, such as a recent one in which 11 fire-fighters died, Spain has banned smoking and the lighting of fires in the countryside until November, by when the country's severe drought may have eased.
Friday's law, which comes into force immediately, emphasizes the danger of barbecues at picnic places, thought to be the cause of the fatal blaze in Guadalajara, and prohibits farmers from burning stubble, for example.
Brits in Spain Get Millions for Winter Fuel
Thousands of expats living in sunny Spain are claiming winter fuel benefit from the UK, it was reported this week.
The Telegraph reported that as much as £6.3 million (EUR 9.1 million) has been handed out to pensioners living in Spain since 2002-3 – in a total of 31,000 payments.
Even though Brits may be living abroad, they are entitled to 'export' the winter fuel benefit – a £200-a-time payment (EUR 289) to help pensioners heat their homes.
The Liberal Democrats' work and pensions spokesman is calling on the government to stop "quite affluent pensioners living abroad" in "quite warm Mediterranean climates" from receiving help.
However, Britain's department for work and pensions has stated there are no plans to review the fuel payments system for Brits living abroad.
Blair and Zapatero Meet at Downing Street
Tony Blair this week backed the Spanish Prime Minister’s call for an ‘alliance of civilisations’. He said it was common sense for “civilised people of whatever religion” to combat terrorism together. “It's the terrorists who want to stir up these differences between Islam and the rest of the world”, he said, and “The idea of Spain and Turkey and other countries coming together to give a clear statement of solidarity across the religious divide is very, very important.”
Zapatero to Meet King Juan Carlos on Mallorca
The Prime Minister is to meet with the King on Monday in the Marivent Palace on Mallorca where the Spanish royal family are spending their summer holidays. It's a usual meeting between the Prime Minister and the King at the start of the summer. The King will also be taking part in the King's Cup Sailing championship next week. Zapatero will move on to Lanzarote for his holidays which start on August 2nd.
Spanish Chic Demonstrated in Beijing
The Spanish label Loewe, member of the luxury giant LVMH, gave a catwalk show last week in Beijing to present its 2005 fall/winter collection for women.
It is the seventh collection by the 30-year-old Belgian designer Jose Enrique Ona Selfa since the latest hot designer plucked from the fast track by LVMH in 2002 as the creative director for Loewe's women's wear.
New Research into The Siesta
Indications are that those who have a siesta improve their learning skills and memory.
An Austrian neurologist, Manfred Walzl, has started a worldwide study into the siesta. He is looking at those companies which give workers an hour's break after lunch. Indications are that those who have a siesta improve their learning skills and memory. The Austrian claims the siesta is not a Spanish invention, but that humans are biologically prepared to take one. He claims that the siesta is the best way to compensate for a lack of sleep at night. Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison are among some of the famous people to have sung the praises of the siesta in the past.
Spain Bids for 2014 Winter Olympics
Seven cities are in the running to host the 2014 Winter Olympics. Bids from Austria, Spain, South Korea, Russia, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan and Georgia were submitted to the International Olympic Committee by Friday's deadline.
The candidates are: Salzburg (Austria), Jaca (Spain), Pyeongchang (South Korea), Sochi (Russia), Sofia (Bulgaria), Almaty (Kazakhstan) and Borjomi (Georgia).
Euromillons - One Ticket Wins €115.4m Record Jackpot
Early indications show that the winning ticket for the massive €115.4 million Euromillions rollover prize was bought in Ireland and the lucky winner has scooped the largest ever jackpot seen in Europe. The numbers were: 03, 19, 26, 49, and 50 and the Lucky Stars were 04 and 05. The top prize had not been won since May 20.
Hungarian Formula 1 Grand Prix
Title leader Fernando Alonso could only manage the eighth-quickest time.  The Spaniard, victorious in six races this season, became Formula One's youngest race winner as a 22-year-old at this track.
McLaren driver Kimi Raikkonen set the quickest time in Saturday's final practice for the Hungarian Grand Prix.  The Finn lapped in one minute 20.203 seconds.
Raikkonen's Colombian team-mate Juan Pablo Montoya was second fastest around the Hungaroring with Michael Schumacher pipping brother Ralf for third best.
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