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Ibiza News

Politicians Pass Motion In Sewer Action

  • Talamanca sewage funding found.
  • Temporary fix underway.
  • Mayor says he will join residents if they denounce.
  • Minister meets residents and tours facilities.

Ibiza Town council have approved an amendment to the city’s 2014 financial budget allocating part of the surplus to the replacement of Talamanca’s troublesome sewer pipe. The proposal had the support of the government team, PSOE-Pacte, and independent councillors Juan Daura and Marienna Sánchez-Jáuregui; while PREF and EPIC abstained.

The mayor of Ibiza, Virginia Marí, said that technical plans were already being drafted for the project and hopes “it will be ready in a month.” Marí also said he has not yet received a reply from the Balearic Government to request emergency declaration to change the pipe’s outflow, but Abaqua has begun the evaluation phase in assessing the environmental impact of the proposed change.

Speaking Monday, Virginia Marí said that the council will consider why the case to legalize the sewer outflow first raised in 2006 has not been resolved. The mayor said he was “ready” to join the locals if they denounce the “environmental crime” to the Government.

Opposition parties criticized the secret meeting that the Minister of the Environment held last week with the Association of Residents of Talamanca, “Ibiza has disowned you” commented socialist Rafa Ruiz, while PREF spokesman, Ignacio Rodrigo, invited the mayor to “stay in Ibiza at work instead of going to the Fitbur tourist trade fair in Madrid”.

Meanwhile Minister for the Environment Biel Company, spent Tuesday in Ibiza meeting with policy makers and those affected by the sewage situation in Talamanca Bay. He reiterated that the solution of the problem is in the new treatment plant to be built in Santa Eulalia.

At the meeting, Company reported on the measures to be implemented shortly to reduce the risk of rupture of the outflow pipeline, especially during the summer. The Department, through Abaqua, has already begun temporary improvements (see below), then from 1 April to 30 October, a monitoring system will be maintained to prevent breakage from trailing boat anchors.

The Minister of Environment also travelled to Santa Eulalia where he visited the land on which the new treatment plant will be built at a cost of 7.1 million €. Company also visited the beach of Es Canar, where Abaqua are undertaking work at a cost of  some 200,000 euros to replace 1400 meters of pipeline and electrical installations.

Company then continued to Sant Josep where he visited the new treatment plant costing 604,000 euros and increasing capacity by 40%. The minister also met with residents of Cala Tarida to address problems in their area ongoing since 2008.

The Talamanca sewage situation has created quite a stink in the news throughout January:-

  • Talamanca; Temporary Sewer Solution (reported 23/1)

The ‘Conselleria de Medi Ambient’ of the Balearic Government has begun work to anchor Talamanca’s problematic sewer pipe to the seabed, a move which it is hoped will provide a temporary solution to the pollution of effluent that lead to the busy tourist beach being closed at the end of the 2014 season.

A team of five people began work on Thursday and will use a series of environmental anchorages to fix the pipe to the seabed to prevent it moving and causing a repeat of effluents escaping to the beach. The work is due for completion in the first half of February.

This follows a meeting between the responsible Minister, Gabriel Company, with local residents and hoteliers. At the meeting, Company said the works were a short term measure to prevent the pipeline breaking and reiterated that the long term solution to the problem was through the new sewerage plant planned for Ibiza Town.

José Colomar, President of Talamanca’s neighbourhood association, had said that they want “a definitive and immediate solution”. Of Company’s handling he said “We have seen a sensible person, genuinely concerned and with a predisposition to seek solutions” but again stressed “We don’t want to start the season with the same problems as we ended last year”.

  • Pitiusan hoteliers demand action (report 13/1)

The Association of Hoteliers in Ibiza and Formentera has sent a letter to the President of the Government, José Ramón Bauzá, demanding replacement of the sewage outfall in Talamanca. The employer’s letter criticizes the “lack of coordination” and “negligence”, while calling the current situation “unbearable”. “Talamanca is one of the areas of Ibiza most likely to be active throughout the year and we fear that the state of the outfall will discourage more than a few.” The Association points out that its partners have over 2,000 tourist beds in the area, generating 800 jobs in the high season.

  • Talamanca residents denounce sewer situation (reported 14/1)

The Talamanca Neighbourhood Association is collecting documentation and preparing the ground for the filing of a complaint against the Attorney Abaqua and the Conselleria of the Environment for crimes against the environment, against public health, and for the economic damage caused by the breakage of the outfall. Last year, the outfall was broken three times (twice during the season). “We’re tired of the excuses; Talamanca may not be the centrepiece of Ibiza, but the sewage outlet is essential, “said José Colomar, the president of the Neighbourhood Association.

 “Brutal & Savage, Beaten & Tortured” Claim British Men

  • Duo to Join Rhoden in Legal Action

UK national press carried reports this week of the intentions of two British nationals to sue the Guardia Civil following what they described as “savage beatings” at the hands of the Spanish National Police.

First reports were of DJ Oliver Sebastien aged 27 who claims he was “battered and tortured” by Guardia Civil officers. Oliver has joined Norman Rhoden, father of Luke Rhoden who died tragically following the widely reported incident with Guardia Civil in the summer, and the pair are being represented by British lawyer Nick Turner. Turner, who is described in the Daily Star as a ’campaigning lawyer’ was quoted in their reports as saying “We want to get the names of all the Guardia Civil members involved in both incidents involving Luke and Oliver.

“We are looking here at potentially some rogue cops within the Spanish Guardia Civil operating in Ibiza, so it is entirely possible the same officers who battered and beat Oliver while he was in custody were the same ones who allegedly choked Luke Rhoden to death.

“Alternatively, and more terrifyingly, there’s a policy decision from the top to target and make an example of young British males who engage in high jinks.”

Oliver of Faversham in Kent says he received a beating in San Antonio in June 2014. He said to the press “I would urge holidaymakers to go elsewhere – the very thought of going back frightens me, I don’t ever intend to return there.”

The DJ has now joined forces with Norman Rhoden and described meeting with Kuke’s father as very moving.

Mr Rhoden  said “The island earns a fortune out of tourism, yet it seems there are some people there in a position of trust who are abusing young holidaymakers.

“Instead of making sure they are safe when they are on the island, they seem to be systematically targeting vulnerable young men.

“And is it right to have a military police force looking after a holiday island?

“The police told me that they never choked Luke but we have a doctor who witnessed it and video footage of an officer with a baton round his neck.”

Following publication of Oliver’s story a further claim of what he describes as “brutal treatment’ by the Guardia was made by Sam Kennish a 25 year old youth worker who had been working the summer season in Ibiza. Kennish said his attack happened outside the Amnesia nightclub early morning. Again speaking to the Daily Star he said “I was delirious and in a state when they attacked me. I needed help but they hit me.

“It was brutal. It started at the side of the road in broad daylight. People ­surely witnessed it but nobody ­intervened as I was beaten unconscious.

“I was in intensive care for a week. I still have physical scars and I get flashbacks all the time, especially at night.

“I had two pairs of handcuffs placed on me and my hands are still numb. I have pain in my wrists and huge scars. The scars on my shoulders will be with me for life.”

 “My parents told me they flew to Ibiza and didn’t know if I would be alive when they got there”

Sam talked to the Ibizan yesterday and told us he was seriously ill at the time of the incident. “I was delirious due to illness. I had double lung pneumonia and a high temperature, though I didn’t know that at the time. I was by myself wandering the streets asking people for help. I remember being in the road and then I was rugby tackled and handcuffed and beaten unconscious. At no point was I aggressive. I was just crying ‘help’ throughout. Then I  woke up in intensive care 3 days later. The doctors told me I was lucky to be alive.”

Sam has joined Oliver and Norman Rhoden in their legal action. Speaking on his assault their lawyer Nick Turner said “Samuel’s beating is almost a copy of what happened to Oliver. Both had to spend a week in intensive care and both were knocked unconscious and ended up in comas.

“We want the names of all the ­Guardia Civil officers involved in these three ­incidents.” The lawyer is urging tourist to stay away from Ibiza until what he believes may be a rogue unit is stopped.

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Scoop Your Pooch Poop or  Face Faeces Fine

  • Dogs required to have 15€ genetic test.
  • Owners of fouling dogs fined.
  • New dedicated dog walking park.

Judging by the responses to our recent straw opinion poll,  issues relating to our canine friends come pretty high on people’s priorities – where to walk them and keeping it clean wherever they do walk. Hey presto one of the island’s borough’s come up with a plan that is barking up all the right trees.

could San Antonio will be one of the first towns in Spain to launch a canine census, a pioneering initiative of Valencia, which has reduced the amount of dog fouling on the streets by a reported 80%. The system, which is also being adopted in some UK cities, involves taking a DNA sample from the pets to create a log with owner details. Stools found on the street are then sent for analysis and the offending owners then fined for their lack of dog dirt diligence San An deputy mayor, José Antonio Verdugo, explained that the Council must approve an ordinance requiring all dogs enrol in this genetic census that, when implemented, will “improve the image of Sant Antoni”. The tests will cost owners 15€. The motion, introduced by the PSOE, won unanimous support.

Initially proposed by the Progressive party spokesman, Pep Marí ‘Marge’, the initiative includes the creation of a dedicated dog park in the town.

Mari said the dog park was agreed as important by a consensus of opinion in a meeting which took place with the Town Hall involving representatives from animal training, welfare and veterinary organisations. “The construction of a large public area specifically designated to walk and exercise our pets, is very important”, he reiterated.”

Pitiüses ends 2014 with 11,296 unemployed

This figure is 0.75% lower than that for 2013

Ibiza and Formentera again exceeded 11,000 unemployed last month. The number of unemployed registered at the SOIB was 11,296, a reduction of 0.75% on December 2013. This means that in December last year (2014) there were 86 less unemployed on the islands than in December 2013. Ibiza had 10,829 unemployed (0.4% less than in December 2013), while Formentera posted a total of 467 (7.3% less than in 2013). Meanwhile, the sharpest decline in unemployment occurred on Mallorca, which saw a decline of 9.6%, followed by Menorca with a fall of 8.8% compared to December 2013. The number of unemployed registered at the Servei d’Ocupació de les Illes Balears (SOIB) has decreased by 8.39 percent, ie 7,655 fewer unemployed than in 2013.

The Minister for Economy and Competitiveness, Joaquín García, said yesterday that the decline in unemployment from a year ago is the largest annual drop in the number of unemployed in December since 1996. “We have survived the worst of the crisis in our community, now we have to make a great effort for those who do not have jobs.” García feels that the December unemployment data indicates that “The Balearics are creating jobs and reducing unemployment every day,” as reflected by 26 consecutive months of falling unemployment.

In national terms, Spain ended 2014 with 4,447,711 unemployed registered at unemployment offices, 253,627 less than in 2013. This decline was the largest annual decline since 1998.

G’ibiza Job? (Strangulated Pun) 30% Say Yes.

Any boys from the blackstuff seeking the solace of some sol could do worse than head for the white isle this year if the views of Ibiza’s public are to be believed. 30%  feel there will be an increase in employment this year – a very positive improvement putting the Pitusan people way above the national norm in the economic confidence stakes according to the report of the Gadeso foundation publiched this week. Conversely 62% of those surveyed were pessimistic as to the likely fortunes of the tourist trade in 2015 – but you have to love the glass third full outlook.

La Caixa Work Scheme Helps 26 in Ibiza (23/1)

A special work programme aimed at integrating those suffering most from social exclusion into the general workforce, has helped 26 people in Ibiza. The initiative of Incorpora de la Obra Social La Caixa has provided a total of 382 jobs in the Balearics, 26 of them in Ibiza. The project has gained the support and participation of 195 Balearic businesses, and the collaboration of 12 organsisations responsible in delivering the programme, including the Fundación Deixalles Eivissa.  The organisers offered their thanks to all those involved and highlighted the programme as a way for companies to have a direct impact on improving their immediate surroundings.

Fernandezto pay care home workers on time. (21/1)

Secretary of the department of family and social services, Sandra Fernández, made a visit to care homes for the elderly on Wednesday promising both workers and suppliers would be paid on promptly henceforth. The Can Blai and Can Raspalls homes are now being managed by the Government who took over the operational reins  on January 1st due to what was described as the “political will to end the administrative problems that impeded the payment to the workers and suppliers of these centres.”

Fernandez was accompanied by representatives of the Fundación de Atención a la Dependencia and the Island Consell. During the visit Fernandez said she wanted to show the involvement of the Government in ensuring the proper operation of the two homes, and to “transmit a message of support to the workers without whom the high standard of service could not be provided.”

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Judge sees no crime in Ibiza Town Hall advertising case

Judge José Espinosa has issued a decree relating to the file of proceedings in the institutional advertising case that led to the resignation of Marienna Sánchez Jáuregui as mayoress of Vila.

Espinosa could find no crime in the arranging of a contract for institutional advertising with the weekly Prensa Pitiusa publication, that was agreed by the city of Vila, since it is not established that any of the defendants has obtained an economic advantage or otherwise, for the advertising contract, nor evidence of any interest other than the supposed benefit for the citizen of being able to obtain institutional information in a free publication against which, no other medium could have competed in this regard.

Under the circumstances The case must be filed, although the Judge did clarify the fact that Sánchez Jáuregui should have been aware of the administrative matters relating to the contract.

The chief of staff, Martínez Beneyto, accused in the case, welcomed the judgment and recalled that throughout all of this time, “I have always maintained what I have already assured the Commission of Inquiry. The only thing I have sought to do thereafter is to rebuild my professional life.”

Balearic housing prices down 1.8% in 2014

The real estate website Fotocasa today reported that second-hand house prices fell by 1.8% in 2014 in the Balearic Islands.

As explained in the report, the average price of housing in Spain stood at 1.632 euros/m2 in December 2014.

According to their data, the Balearic Islands have the fourth highest prices in Spain, behind Madrid, Basque country and Catalonia.

By municipalities, the greatest declines occur in Manacor (20.2%), Inca (7.7%) and Marratxí (4.2%).

At the other end end the scale  prices in Ibiza climb to 3,022 euros/m2, followed by Calvià, 2,646 euros/m2.

Ibiza’s first fall in population since 1996

Ibiza has seen a decrease in population for the first time since 1996, the year that the National Statistics Institute (INE) began collecting demographic data on the Spanish municipalities. In fact, during the last year the population loss has hardly been significant – there were 83 less people than in the last census, but this is the first time that this has occurred.

Sant Josep, Sant Antoni and Formentera are the only municipalities in the Balearic Islands that have not lost population over the last year. The island of Ibiza ended 2014 with 140,271 registered inhabitants compared to 140,354 recorded in late 2013. Ibiza, Santa Eulària des Riu and Sant Joan had less population in 2014 than the previous year.

The population in Vila began to slow down ten years ago. In fact, the population in Ibiza in 2012 was higher than in 2014. However, Vila had only 33,223 inhabitants in 2000 compared to 50,401 in 2013.

Santa Eulària des Riu, with 36,189 registered inhabitants, had 36,464 people registered in 2013.

Sant Josep, however, is one of the municipalities on the island of Ibiza that has grown in population. It has risen from 24,498 to 25,362 inhabitants in 2013-2014.

Sant Antoni de Portmany, the fourth municipality of Ibiza, has 23,359 inhabitants compared to 23,314 last year.

Police in Schools Programme

Police carried out 2019 educational sessions during 2014 – 605 in schools, 1,400 in educational centres and 14  focused on the use of new technologies.

The police Tutor program is implemented in the six municipalities of Ibiza and works with 56 schools, of which 37 are infant and primary, 12 high schools 7 private centres, all accounting for some 18,400 students.

In 2014 the liaison officers in Ibiza offered talks dealing with topics such as the responsible use of new technologies/cyber bullying; the prevention of drug use and vandalism; the legislation on local by-laws etc.

1,342 sessions of driver education for a total of 6.466 students were also held together with local police in 6 schools planning evacuation drills.

Preventive initiatives carried out the last school year included the campaign for the prevention and detection of consumption of alcoholic beverages by minors, prevention and tackling  drug use among schoolchildren and the risks arising from the use of new technologies.

Woman dies after cliff fall in Cala Jondal (10/1)

A 45 year old French national died this morning after falling from a cliff between Cala Jondal and Sa Caleta. Relatives of the women reported her missing at 11 pm and at 00.45 am the emergency services found the lifeless body of the woman who had fallen from a height of 20 metres onto the rocks below. Ibiza Firefighters assisted the rescue group with a crew arriving at the scene at 1.30 am and helped to recover the body that lay lifeless in a rocky area. The recovery was finally achieved at 3.30 am.

Mercadona to donate a ton of food to Caritas (9/1)

The Mercadona supermarket chain has renewed its partnership with Caritas of Ibiza and Formentera and made a commitment to donate a ton of food. Mercadona head of relations Barbara Ordás acknowledged the “work and dedication to serving the needy being carried out by the charity.”

Roger Sales takes over as director of the State (9/1)

Roger Sales Traver took up his position as director of the Administración General del Estado (AGE) in Ibiza and Formentera yesterday, at a ceremony held in Eivissa and chaired by the government delegate for the Illes Balears, Teresa Palmer. The new insular director said he takes office “with great enthusiasm and responsibility,” and that his work “will be based on three pillars: work, loyalty and humility.” He added that “a time of great difficulty both economically and social demands a major change of mindset. He also stressed that the primary mission of the will be “fighting crime.”

Company claims pirate taxis are difficult to catch (15/1)

The Minister of Agriculture, Environment and Territory, Biel Company, admitted today that it was proving “difficult” to solve the intrusion of pirate taxis on Ibiza, a problem that the manager of the Business Federation of Balearic Transport, Salvador Servera, described as “endemic”. Company said, after a meeting between the Consell and Balearic Transport to discuss this problem, which is of “concern” to the administration and very difficult to control, “It is not enough to stop the vehicle in question, it is necessary to catch the driver while charging passengers.”

Ibiza to have 3 more Guardia Civil this year (20/1)

The number of Traffic police is to increase on Ibiza this year through the addition of three extra agents, while we await the summer reinforcements. This is the result of the valiant efforts carried out by the insular president, Vicent Serra, on behalf of the Balearic Guardia Civil.

This was highlighted at a meeting yesterday between the President of the Consell and the new insular director of the State Administration, Roger Sales.

At the meeting, they also discussed state funding, connectivity and investments in treatment and desalination plants, in addition to reinforcing security.

Ibiza mediators prepare to unveil their new service (20/1)

On Wednesday the group of mediators in Ibiza have organised a workshop to disseminate information about their service. From 11 am to 2 pm the professionals will man several informative tables installed at the courts of Ibiza, both the criminal court on Isidore Macabich and the civil court in the Cetis building. Their goal is to “inform, promote and publicise this method of conflict resolution and its benefits.”

According to lawyer and mediator Eva María Cardona, “sometimes, in some conflicts, there are emotional issues that are better dealt with by mediation than in the courts.”

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San Jose Approves 7 new Taxi Licences

Sant Josep City Council have now approved the award of 7 new taxi licenses in the borough, increasing the total to 75 licenses. Three of the seven will be for taxis adapted for people with special needs. These three new licenses will bring the total to six disabled access taxis available in the borough.

Ibiza Town repair work begins

Repairs to the pavements along the inner ring road (E-10) will begin today and are expected to take three weeks. The work will take place on the three E-10 ring road roundabouts (the rotondas de Juan XXIII, Multicines Ibiza and the Comisaría de la Policía Nacional) at a cost of 34,573€. During these works users are informed that each of the bridges will be closed for three to four days. Moreover, the deficiencies that have reappeared on the Avenida de Sant Josep pavements, which had already been repaired, will be repaired again soon, since this is a job that is still under warranty.

Figueretes spring clean (14/1)

Costas of the Illes Balears have given permission for a clean up of the Ses Figueretes dock that has deteriorated over time, and which endangers the embarkation and disembarkation of passengers. Project funding will be borne by the nautical companies who operate in this area during the summer season, with boat trips to Formentera and Es Vedrá. Between them they will invest a total of  36,000€ to improve the dock, which has been in a poor condition for years. The work will be completed before February 19th, which is the deadline given by Costas.

PSOE-Pacte denounce Bossa neglect (16/1)

PSOE-Pacte councillor, Rafa Ruiz, has demanded that the mayor, Virginia Marí, give “immediate and urgent action” to the area of Platja d’en Bossa, which is in a state of “absolute abandonment. The neighbours, according to Ruiz, have made clear their desperation, “despite having contacted the Ayuntamiento on numerous occasions “virtually” none of their requests have been met. The area could hardly be worse there are broken streetlights threatening to fall down, un-pruned trees, untold damage to paths and sewers, and even burnt out cars that nobody seems interested in moving.”

Balàfia tower acquisition

The Sant Joan Socialist Group has proposed the acquisition by public institutions of one of the houses and towers near the hamlet of Balàfia, which they say is currently for sale. The secretary general and Socialist candidate for mayor of Sant Joan, Pep Torres ‘Peret’, said that they “were interested in the possibilities of public acquisition of this property,” he believes this farm house and tower in Balàfia, along with the estate should go towards the creation of a centre for dissemination of our “heritage, landscape and the natural values of the municipality.”

Formentera Parking Ban at S’Estany des Peix (23/1)

The Consell de Formentera has announced the cessation of parking facilities at the mouth of the ses Estany des Peix. Work on a protective sand dune is due to commence in February in an effort to halt further damage to this environmentally sensitive area falling under the protection of ‘Red Natura 2000’. According to the report issued by Formentera’s town hall the restriction at ses Estany des Peix, which has been used as public parking for many years, is part of a wider initiative governing the regulation and restriction of motor vehicle access and parking to the area of La Savina.

Ca Marí water tank  repairs

On Wednesday the Consell Insular de Formentera and the concessionaire of the integrated management of water on the island, Aqualia, will begin work on improving and maintaining the Ca Marí water tank.

Regarding the water treatment plants in Santa Eulalia and Ibiza, the Secretary of State confirmed that, although Santa Eulalia is in a more advanced state of processing and has already received European financing, it is anticipated that both projects can go to tender in the first quarter of 2015.

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Ibiza gets 3.5 million € pcm in Balearic Funds (24/1)

The Consell de Ibiza will receive a monthly contribution from the Balearic Government of 3.5 million euros this year, resulting from the implementation of the new Law on Financing of Consells.

This figure is a 75% increase on the contributions received under the previous system, fixed at 2 million euros per month. The regional government has explained that this is due in part to a direct increase in funding, and also the elimination of several side agreements that are now integrated to the main current contributions of the Government towards the Consell.

The Minister of Finance, Alex Minchiotti, said that “this change will mean greater liquidity and security, and ensure we can meet our expenses obligations every month”.

Ibiza observes minute of silence for Charlie Hebdo  (8/1)

Institutions, politicians, journalists and citizens of the Balearic Islands yesterday expressed their rejection of the terrorist attack on French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo by participating in a minute of silence in solidarity with the twelve victims and eleven wounded. The president of the Consell d’Eivissa, Vicent Serra, led the minute of silence at the headquarters of the Consell, which was also attended by other political representatives. There were silent gatherings in the different municipalities of the island and throughout the rest of the Balearic Islands.

Santa Eulalia – Creditor Good Guys

Santa Eulalia town council has exceeded the 30 day legal limit for payment of suppliers, by a whole 8.32 days, paying on average after only 21.68 days. The full committee meeting held on Tuesday heard that this had been achieved without recourse to any refinancing program. Other topics covered included the creation of a special commission to oversee the digitalisation of the municipal archive, BOIB and BOE records which will save 200 linear meters of files. Full approval was also granted to a planning application in Cala Llenya, it not having received any public objections.

Batcave no cause for drama says Mayor

Responding to the suspension of the long awaited road improvements. Sant Joan Mayorí Carraca, said “we must not dramatise the situation”.  Mariworks had to be suspended due to the discovery of a cave inhabited by a protected species of bats. He expressed surprise that the works had got to this stage before the discovery, but said it should be possible to find a solution allowing works to continue.

Local residents said that the cave was well disguised by a collapsible bush, and it was only the sudden emergence of a black rocket car driving at high speed following a bat shaped floodlight appearing in the night sky that alerted them to the cave’s location.

Eivissa to Host Heritage Cities Fire Safety Seminar (23/1)

Eivissa has been selected from among all of Spain’s world heritage cities to host a national fire safety and emergency procedures seminar at the end of April. The course will be attended by representatives from 15 fire departments throughout Spain. The decision to hold the course in Eivissa was made at the Comisión Informativa del Grupo Ciudades Patrimonio de la Humanidad  de España held recently in Madrid and attended by Lina Sansero, Ibiza’s Councillor for Heritage. The arrival of hundreds of Firemen to Ibiza will undoubtedly give an early season boost to tourism through bookings of female only tourist parties.

‘Amore i Odio’ kiosk

The Consell de Formentera announced yesterday that it has obtained  judgements for breach of contract against tenants Marcos Negron and  Riusados SA. In respect of the ‘Amore i Odio’ kiosk, located in Es Caló, which should now be dismantled in the coming days. Consequently the lot will be available for re-tender for a period of six years.

Jaume Ferrer Confirmed as GxF Candidate (24/1)

The executive Gent per Formentera voted by 74 of the 136 registered members, to confirm Jaume Ferrer’s re-election as leader of the party group for the upcoming municipal elections.

Applications fall for works in Formentera (13/1)

On Formentera 253 applications for minor works were submitted during 2014, 21% less than in the previous year, when 329 were requested. On the other hand, applications for ‘simple minor works’ grew to 136 in 2014, from 112 in 2013.

PIMEEF winner spends local

Encourage small and medium businesses on the island and reward customer loyalty with a gift of 6,000€ in purchases.

That was the spirit enjoyed yesterday by PIMEEF draw winner, Chilean-born Karen Parra, who had a busy day shopping at 16 stores on the island – including the German deli where she had bought the winning ticket.

Crime

Policeman arrested for attempted sexual abuse (12/1)

A man was arrested after attempting to force a woman into his car and abuse her. The incident occurred on the Avenida España, in the centre of Vila. The man was apparently masturbating in his vehicle, but that was not the end of the matter; he then started chasing his victim who was walking down the street and tried to force her into his car with the intention of sexually abusing her. The woman, however, fought back and managed to escape her pursuer who was then arrested by the National Police.

According to municipal sources, the man is a member of the Policía Local in Eivissa, and has already spent several months of his employment suspended without pay for acts of a similar nature in the past. Apparently, the subject is known within the force for his somewhat strange behavior. The first time he was suspended from his employment as a policeman was when he was caught masturbating in a patrol car. Since then the man has been arrested for several similar incidents and is already known by the courts for this type of behaviour. He is a recurrent offender and has already been arrested for indecent exposure on other occasions, specifically, for masturbating inside his vehicle in the street, said prosecution sources.

Folied; Madrid Drug Gang Plot to Market Methamphetamine  in Ibiza

National Police agents have arrested 29 members of a drug ring  dedicated to the distribution of Methamphetamine in Madrid. The arrests came following raids on 4 addresses in Madrid and Fuenlabrada. The investigation included the arrest of 3 drug mules (people responsible for transporting the drugs), two of whom had been sent to Ibiza and Palma de Mallorca with the intent to extend the gang’s market. The operation began last June when detectives became aware of the existence of an organization selling the meth derivative ‘shabu’ in the district of Tetuan (Madrid).

3 British nationals arrested with 9,000 ecstasy pills and 2kg of MDMA (8/1)

The National Police have arrested three British nationals in Ibiza carrying 9,000 ecstasy pills. The three were driving a luxury car when officers in a patrol car noticed their reaction when they saw the police car. They were subsequently stopped and when searched were found to be carrying nearly 9,000 ecstasy tablets (nine bags with a total weight of over 3 kilos), more than 2 kilos of MDMA crystals, £4,000 and about 900€ in cash. One of the three detainees had already been arrested last summer in Platja d’en Bossa for trafficking ketamine.

1,765 objects seized from three Ibiza shops (2/1)

A total of 1,765 items were seized after an inspection campaign at commercial establishments engaged in the retail sale of so-called ‘all for 1€’ shops, as part of an operation called ‘Bazaar’. Fiscal Agents and members of the Guardia Civil’s Ibiza Border Patrol conducted the inspection of several of the most important establishments by sales volume on the island. The objective was to inspect articles offered for sale to the public in such establishments and to inspect the books regarding tax matters, fraud and the presence of contraband or items that might be dangerous for consumers and home users. The agents also conducted a documentary inspection to ensure compliance with all requirements that apply to such establishments. The campaign was conducted during the second half of December to coincide with the Christmas season. The inspections, which were conducted at eight establishments on the island, turned up three that had committed offences and resulted in the confiscation of 1,765 objects worth 12,475€. These items were seized for various breaches of the ‘Law on Protection of Consumers and Users on the Balearic Islands: Law 7/2014’, as well as import tax irregularities. 40 % of the products seized, had been smuggled into the country, while 10 percent were withdrawn for their ‘real and manifest danger’ to consumers.

Drunk driver arrested for driving in wrong direction

Formentera Local Police arrested a 46 year old native of Jaen, (FMP) on Saturday at 11.00 pm when he drove the wrong way down the Avinguda Joan Castelló Guasch in Sant Ferran.

The car was confiscated by the local police after the driver failed a breathalyser test which recorded 1.51 grammes of alcohol in his blood at the first attempt and 1.50 on the second.  The legal limit is 0.25 grams of alcohol in the blood, so the Police proceeded to arrest the man, who already had a history of similar crimes on the road.

Prosecution want 10 years for ses Feixes crime (9/1)

The prosecution want ten years in prison for the man charged with stabbing his friend in an abandoned farmhouse in ses Feixes on the Camí Vell de Jesús, Santa Eulària (Ibiza), on the morning of January 1st last year.

A jury will judge the accused from 9.30 am on Monday at the Provincial Court of the Balears. The public prosecutor’s accusation is of murder, but he also seeks compensation of 90,000€ for the parents of the victim. The accused’s mitigation is his severe addiction to narcotics, he had been a cocaine and heroin addict for seven years prior to the event.

Driver 4fourtimes over legal limit in Santa  Eulalia (22/1)

The local police detained the driver on Wednesday in Santa Eulalia who was under the influence of alcohol.

According to municipal sources, the detention took place at 3.45 next to the Hotel Tres Torres, following a breathalyser test which gave a result of 0.91 mg/l, nearly four times the legal limit.

The Town Council explained that a patrol had observed the car driving through the area with his hazard lights on and approached the vehicle to see if there was a problem. After speaking with the man the police saw obvious signs of intoxication hence the test was performed. The driver has been charged

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Environment

“Negative reports should stop the drilling”

The president of the Consell de Ibiza, Vicent Serra, said yesterday that “we are in line to get a negative Environmental Impact Statement” in relation to the surveys conducted by Cairn Energy in the Gulf of Valencia, near to the coast of Ibiza. Yesterday Serra met the Secretary of State for the Environment, Federico Ramos de Armas, in Madrid to address this and other issues of interest to the Balearic Islands. “We have been informed of the negative report from the Environment Ministry’s Department of Sustainability of the Coast and Sea which, together with the report from the Balearic Environment Committee, make these proposals hardly salvageable by the oil company.” said Serra, “At the moment we have confirmed that this report, along with that of the Balearic Environment Committee, are compact, consistent and tough. We are in line to get a negative EIS, although you never know at this stage. However, the report of the General Directorate is important and will definitely carry weight.”

Industry Ministry hide drilling project information (14/1)

The Mar Blava Alliance has accused the Ministry of Industry of not allowing information on the Seabird oil exploration project in the Gulf of León to be made public. The Alliance are demanding that the opening period for claims against the Seabird Exploration project be made available to all citizens. Mar Blava explained that on January 8th they received a letter from the Ministry of Industry regarding the project and sent only to certain administrations and stakeholders. Mar Blava think it should have been brought to public attention, so that all citizens have a chance to submit their claims.

Ibiza’s 2014 CO2 Emissions Up 15%

Ibiza’s carbon dioxide emissions increased by 15.2% in 2014, a figure classified as ‘very negative’ by environmental campaigners Friends of the Earth.. The figures are based on data from energy company Endesa, highlighting the island as still being ‘highly dependent’ on fossil fuels for energy production. Friends of the Earth said the Spanish Government must turn “good intentions into real change” and criticised their “doing everything possible to make difficult the implementation of renewable energy “. Though the State has complied with the requirements of  CO2 emissions in the Kyoto treaty, the pressure group say they have done so only by  buying emission rights from countries of Eastern Europe at a cost of some 800 million

Mar Blava insist Hydrocarbons Law must be reformed (17/1)

The Alliance Mar Blava has reiterated the need for in depth reform of the ‘obsolete’ Hydrocarbons Law to “eliminate the promotional nature of the search and exploitation of hydrocarbons and transform it into a standard that prioritises environmental criteria.”

They say that the Act should specify the declaration of the Spanish Western Mediterranean as an oil exploration free zone, which could be achieved by specific legislation for this purpose.

They have even suggested that, to advance this change, the Alliance will consult with legal experts and draft a series of proposals.

http://alianzamarblava.org/en/

More than 20 artists displayed their ‘weapons’ to fight oil exploration at a wonderfully baffling and so very Ibizan exhibition in the gallery P | Art Ibiza. The bewildering mix of artistic impression included what appears to be a children’s mural, until you notice the chap putting the finishing touches, a boho DJ, and a group of people doing, well it’s hard to say what really – but then I didn’t even relate to the expressive dance at the National Ballet’s Wind in the Willows so it’s not really my cup of tea. Anyway, brilliant, love it, only in Ibiza.. Photos CRISTINA LÓPEZ

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Health

Ibiza’s Radiotherapy Unit Delayed Yet Again

  • Patients must wait a minimum of a Further 9 months

The delay in awarding the contract for radiation facilities for the oncology service at Can Misses Hospital has been delayed for nine months beyond the timetable set by the Ministry of Health.

On October 31st, 2013 President of the Balearic Government, Jose Ramon Bauza, and the Minister of Health, Martí Sansaloni announced that by December 2014 the early treatment facility for cancer patients would be available at the new Ibiza hospital. A date that did not convince the dermatologist Luis Cros, chairman of the advisory committee for the Spanish Association Against Cancer in the Balearic Islands. “I’m like St. Thomas – when I see it I’ll believe it,” said Cros after listening to Sansaloni assure everyone that the tender process would take place in January 2014 and the award of the radiotherapy service contract in April.

Unfortunately, Cros’ pessimism has proven to be correct – cancer patients still can’t receive treatment in Eivissa. “The Tenders Committee has met 4 or 5 contractors and has not awarded anything, I think they have been given enough time to do this,” says Cros, who believes that when the service is awarded the company that manages radiotherapy “will take at least 6 months” to pass all of the necessary checks and start the service.

1,214 children born in Can Misses during 2014 (21/1)

  • 7% increase in births at Ibiza Hospital
  • Ibiza baby boom – birth rate is up, but Caesarean interventions show a big cut.

A total of 1,214 children born in Ibiza’s Can Misses hospital in 2014, a 3.7 per cent increase on the previous year’s 1,171 births.

Of the total of births attended in 2014, 961 were natural and 215 by caesarean section. Reflecting advances in gynecology and obstetrics generally and also Ibiza’s successful programme to reduce the number of breech births through steps taken in the early stages of pregnancy, the resulting drop is  substantial – from  27% of births by Caesarean section in 2008 down to 18% last year.

Head of gynecology and obstetrics Dr. Rodolfo Moreno also commented on a big jump in the number of multiple births – almost double with 27 in 2014 compared to 15 in 2013. He explained “the vast majority of these multiple births are twins and though we expect small oscillations every year, 2014 was a quite remarkable jump.” The increase in multiple births also had an effect on the number of premature babies which increased from 25 in 2013 to 65 last year – to be expected according to Dr Moreno.  “There is always an increased risk of prematurity in the birth of twins and triplets” he said “and so the figures reflect that.” What it seems harder to identify is why Ibiza would have the overall increase in births – bucking the Balearic and national trend of reduced birth rates. The most likely explanation is felt to be Ibiza’s stronger economic situation compared to much of the rest of Spain, and also increased population resulting from immigration to the island.

Formentera Lost That Loving Feeling? (23/1)

Contrary to Ibiza’s statistics reporting an increase in births at Can Misses, Formentera reported a 23% drop in births in 2014.

The drop follows a steady average increase since the hospital opened in 2007. In the first year there were 32 births, in 2008 65 and 2009 76. Numbers dropped back slightly in 2010 and 2011 with 68 and 62 respectively, then a big surge to 92 in 2012 and the record year of 109 babies in 2013. The number dropped back to 83 in 2014 however knowing that Formentera never likes to be outdone by it’s Ibiza neighbour we feel sure the news of Ibiza’s increased birth-rate will have them all hard at work to  bring up the numbers.

Cancer Scanning Scheme

Covering over 200,000 people apersonal letterwill be sent to those in the 50-69range inviting them to undergo a simple test for blood in the stool whichearly stages of  cancer in the majority of cases.

Over 4,000 emergencies in the last quarter of 2014 (17/1)

The 112 Emergency Service of the Balearic Islands coordinated a total of 4,156 incidents in the Pitiüses in the fourth quarter of 2014, 3,950 in Ibiza and 206 in Formentera. On Ibiza, the majority, 789, were linked to the category of healthcare. Another 685 corresponded to citizen security, such as fights, assaults or noise; 376 to road and traffic safety; 343 bylaws; 296 fire and rescue, and 64 other incidents. Meanwhile, in Formentera there were 36 incidents of public safety, 34 health care, 26 road safety and traffic, 19 fire and rescue, 15 bylaws and 2 more for other incidents.

Pharmacy service spent 15 million € on drugs in 2014 (12/1)

On December 1st last year the Pharmacy Department moved to the new Can Misses hospital, which has a new high technology system that will improve stock control. The investment in this pharmacy dispensing equipment was 2,139,862.41€ and it is very important to improve the efficiency of a service which spent 14,663,387€ on pharmaceuticals in 2014 – 4.7% more than in 2013 (13,371,643€). Still, head of the service, Esperanza Estaún, notes that “there has been some cost containment, expenditure has increased to a lesser extent than in 2013 – a year in which the increase was 9.3%.

Marí wants transfer to new hospital completed (15/1)

The regional deputy of the PSOE-Pacte coalition, Esperança Marí yesterday insisted that the transfer of the Emergency Department and hospital beds from the Old Can Misses to the new hospital be expedited. The progressive lawmaker denounced the old hospital as “completely full and causing problems for patients who need to be admitted.” Marí praised the “extremely positive” work done by health professionals at Can Misses who are “completely overworked. With no prospect of an increase in staff the number of patients far exceeds those who we can hospitalise.”

Cold weather increases the pressure on Can Misses (16/1)

The situation at Balearic Emergency departments, including Can Misses, is not unusual, it has been going on for the last 5 or 6 years, confirms Ramón Canet, head of Internal Medicine at Can Misses. The cause lies in the arrival of cold weather, followed by flocks of elderly with various illnesses: “Over the past 5 or 6 years the hospital has becomes home to a growing number of people who need to remain in Emergency for a long time, even several days, until they can access a hospital ward.” Emergency Managers warn that flu season has not even started yet in the Pitiüses.

Socialists criticise the “collapse” of Can Misses (20/1)

The Socialist Party of Ibiza have denounced the “state of collapse” of the old Can Misses’ Emergency department and criticised the fact that “people are parked in the hallways through the inability of the Government to open the new hospital complex.”

They have demanded that the insular president, Vicent Serra, and the leader of the Government, Jose Ramon Bauza, explain on what grounds the opening of the new centre and the commissioning of radiotherapy are still delayed. Socialist secretary general, Vicent Torres, was clear, “the degradation of the health service, has been caused by PP cuts.”

How Was It For You?

  • Nick Gibbs

Hello again and Happy New Year – I hope you had a great new year celebration and wish you every success for 2015. It’s great to be back (well you have to say that) though the month has really flown by.

On our travels we found ourselves in Paris on the day of the ‘Charlie’ solidarity march. Though entirely coincidental to an already planned Paris stop off on a road trip through France, it was a very special place to be on that day – particularly for somebody who works in the press, albeit a rather less controversial newspaper (unless Tony Pike is in it of course).

There was a really strong feeling about the place, almost like you could touch it. A remarkable melting pot of optimism, resistance and tolerance – odd bedfellows perhaps but it certainly made for an interesting visit (and for once rather less surly Parisians).

So now it is back to the editors chair and quite a bit to get through – with several weeks of news to catch up on, this first edition of 2015 is all about the text.

The Ibizan  Daily

We are delighted to confirm that we have entered into a working partnership at the invitation of Spanish daily Periodico de Ibiza. They have asked us to compile their English news page which we have been doing as a trial for the last month and will now do so going forward. The page appears in the newspaper Tuesday to Saturday. The news contained is currently of their selection as the most relevant stories of the day – though we are trying to “educate” them as to news that will be of greatest interest to English speaking readers. To put this bluntly we hope that in coming months there will be far less dull accounts of bureaucratic business and nonsensical lists of statistics.

Internet Subscription

We have added the facility to subscribe to the Ibizan online to the website. At present this is a simple subscription where you receive notification when the weekly issues are posted and available for viewing. Our technical whiz is working on a selective subscription where you can specify the type and frequency of articles you wish to receive.

http://theibizan.com/

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Tourism 2015

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British Business Strong at Fitbur Trade Fair

  • UK bookings cause for optimism

The Pitiüses trade delegation kicked off the important Fitbur tourist trade show full of optimism and great expectations following a strong first day at the event in Madrid running until Sunday. During a busy first session both business and political representatives were confident that the principal British market will continue to grow this year. “We’ve met online wholesale and British agencies. There are good prospects for the British market to Eivissa. The islands of Ibiza and Formentera are popular in the UK market and we have every reason to believe there will be an increase in arrivals of tourists from the UK.” said Juanjo Riera, president of the Association of Hoteliers in Ibiza and Formentera (FEHIF), who recalled that last year they reached 798,000 British passengers compared with 780,000 in 2013, representing an increase of 2.3%. In the same vein the president of the Government, Jose Ramon Bauza, noted that the expectations of growth of international tourism in Balears “are frankly positive”

Consell President Vicent Serra said that the early signs were good, both in the main season and during the marginal weeks and the winter. There was no mention of how the winter tourists are meant to get to Ibiza, but we’ll just have to cross that Mediterranean when we get to it.

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Formentera will be present at overseas tourism fairs

The Consell de Formentera, in the form of the Tourist Board, will have a presence at five tourism fairs to be held in the Netherlands, Finland, Germany and Austria during the next two weeks.  These include the Vacantibeurs Fair in Utrecht (Netherlands) from January 13th to 18th, with two presentations and a gastronomic event presented by Restaurant Can Dani (recently awarded a Michelin star). From January 15th to 18th Formentera will exhibit in Helsinki (Finland) and Vienna, then in Stuttgart from January 17th to 18th and, finally, Dusseldorf from Jan 17th to 25th.

Adlib will be at the Momad Metrópolis fair again

Moda Adlib will contribute to an institutional stand at the MOMAD Metropolis fair, to be held on February 8th, 9th and 10th at IFEMA. At this event, which takes place annually in Madrid, numerous textile, footwear and accessories brands are involved. The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Vicent Roig, is attending the shows with the aim of supporting Ibizan companies that are participating. The institutional stand will provide information relating to this sector, in addition to activities in which Adlib will participate during 2015.

New Hotel Som Group is Ibiza Bound

The newly created Spanish hotel chain Hotels Som is studying several projects to be implemented in Ibiza. In an announcement Monday company executives Joan Enric Capellà and Vicenç Miralles said “We are at an advanced stage in talks relating to the opening of two prestige boutique hotels in Ibiza, and one resort that is already built, but has great potential for growth”.

30 million€ to improve Pitiüsan hospitality sector

The Fomento of Tourism in Ibiza and BMN-Sa Nostra have signed a partnership to support the Pitiusan tourism sector and thus create a more competitive and sustainable tourism model. Consequently, those associated with the Fomento will have access to a 30 million euros line of credit, which will provide new alternatives to the demands of funding partners. BMN-SA Nostra spokesperson, Tolo Way, stressed that “these are good times for the Ibizan economy and for companies to access capital, invest and grow so that they can create new jobs.”

Air Europa begin inter-island flights in May  (19/1)

On May 1st Air Europa will begin inter-island flights, which will link Son Sant Joan with Mahon and Ibiza airports six times per day and will be operated by turboprop ATR 72 planes.

This was reported in a statement by the airline of the Globalia group, and confirms the announcement made by the president of Globalia, Juan José Hidalgo, in December, “permission has been sought, according to the available slots, for us to offer an efficient, convenient and flexible service, favouring both business trips and holidays.”

Consequently, the first morning flights will take off from Mahon at 7 am and from Ibiza at 7.35 am. The last flights of the day will take off from Palma to Mahon at 20.55 pm and from Palma to Ibiza at 21.00 pm.

All inter-island flights have connections at the airport of Palma with the extensive network of national, European and international destinations catered for by Air Europa.

For example, from the company’s hub at the Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport, travellers from Mahon and Ibiza may continue their journey to Air Europe’s transatlantic destinations in North and South America, and the Caribbean, without worrying about their luggage.

As a result of this, passengers from both Mahon and Ibiza can check in directly to their final destinations.

Hoteliers welcome Air Europa Palma-Eivissa flights

Yesterday the Association of Hoteliers in Ibiza and Formentera (FEHIF) positively assessed the news that Air Europa will start flying inter-island routes from May, with 12 daily flights (six round trips). Moreover, the service will be maintained throughout winter as it is to be a Public Service Obligation (PSO). The entry of this company into the market between islands will lead to rates coming down about 40%. “Improving inter-island flight frequencies and lowering ticket prices will promote more movement of people between the islands.” stated the president of Globalia

San An Confirms October Festival 2015

San Antonio has chosen Fitur to announce that they will be holding a second October Festival Ibiza in 2015. This year’s event will take place from the 9th to 12th October.

The festival celebrates music, culture and arts from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s decades centred on flagship live music events at various public and private locations.

Publicity is planned to for presentation to press, tour operators and travel agencies, with new promotional materials to help drive home the message. A presentation to tourism professionals will be held Thursday 29th coinciding with Ibiza day.

Councillor for Tourism Vicent Ribas said “The first San Antonio October Festival was a great success, a very positive  experience, and a very good demonstration of a productive partnership between the City, as an organiser, and private entrepreneurs in the borough”.

Ribas went on to say that Fitbur is the ideal vehicle to present news of October Festival Ibiza 2015 as a “new tourism product which helps to extend the Ibiza season through business attracted by music from the best three decades of the twentieth century.

The 2014 event was well supported within the English speaking business community of San Antonio, though there was some criticism of the event not being more widely promoted in the English speaking markets as such must be considered the greatest target source of overseas tourists in so far as extending the season was concerned.

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Ibiza Airport – one of AENA’s most profitable (17/1)

Son Sant Joan in Palma and Ibiza were the most profitable airports for AENA in 2014. Palma’s airport has had, for several years, no debt while Ibiza’s has been reduced from the 3.65 million euros accumulated up to 2013, according to the Ministry of Development.

AENA’s global economic data for the year 2014 will be released shortly, but in 2013 Son Sant Joan exceeded 97.6 million euros profit and Ibiza 12.7 million euros.

The reasons for this upward trend in comparison with other airports, is based on the fact that Ibiza recorded a record number of passengers in 2014, with more than 6.2 million over the past year and Son Sant Joan achieved 23.1 million visitors.

This increase in airport activity resulted in higher revenues from the operation itself and from an improvement in commercial revenues.

Both Ibiza and Son Sant Joan airport outperform the rest for lack of accumulated debt, which is not true of Barajas, El Prat, Alicante, Bilbao, Malaga, Tenerife Norte and Fuerteventura. South Tenerife and Lanzarote are the only other profitable airports. The increase in passenger arrivals in the case of Ibiza is because of an increase in landing slots, opening new routes and the growth rates of between 9% and 10% Ibiza achieved over the last six months, according to facilities

Eleven illegal villas and holiday flats face fines (4/1)

The Department of Tourism has set in motion another 11 penalty proceedings for renting apartments or villas for tourism purposes between January and November 2014. This figure represents 20% of all inspections that have been made for this purpose (56 in total) and 24% of the total number of disciplinary proceedings that have been initiated in 2014 (46 in total).

All homeowners who want to offer holiday accommodation must register with Turismo, which currently has 1,600 applications registered for this reason.

Tourists Up  4% in 2014

At the close 2014, the Balearic Islands saw tourist arrivals increase by 4% in comparison to 2013, a total of 13.5 million visitors; a return to the number of visitors seen prior to the start of the economic crisis and recovering two million visitors since 2009.

According to the Institute Balear de Estadística (Ibestat), all Islands reported positive data during 2014. In Mallorca, the increase was from 2% (9.6 million tourists); in Menorca, 1.9% (1.1 million) and Ibiza, from 13% (2.7 million).

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Port exceeds 2 million passengers (9/1)

Despite a lack of official data for December, the port of Ibiza will have seen around 2 million passengers in 2014. According to the website of the Balearic Islands Port Authority (APB), the port of Ibiza has welcomed 1,943,361 passengers in the first 11 months of 2014, an increase of 10% over the same period in 2013 (1,772,155 passengers). If the statistics for December are equal to those in 2013, when 68,202 ferry passengers passed through the port, Ibiza’s docks will exceed two million passengers this year, a figure not reached since 2007, when there were a total of 2,002,619 passengers. Three quarters of travellers (74.5%) arriving or departing from the Ibiza port had the port of la Savina, Formentera as their source or destination. Traffic to and from la Savina increased by 13% in the first 11 months of 2014. Most of these passengers (96.3%) were travelling to or from Ibiza, while the rest were travellers between Formentera and Denia (54,432 passengers), 439% more than in the same period in 2013. 7,269 passengers used the Balearic ports of Palma, Alcúdia, Mahon, Ibiza and la Savina, between January and November 2014, a 10% increase overall, with the exception of Palma, whose traffic decreased by 1%, from 757,585 to 749,730

Love is in the air…

Valentines day is just around the corner and we hope to hear of some reader romance to give the February 12th edition a loving feeling. We’d love to hear about or from anybody getting engaged, married, renewing their vows or even changing their facebook status to “in a relationship”. Please send us as much of your story as you care to share along with a photo and we’ll be pleased to tell the (Ibiza) world your lovers tale.

Free Valentine’s Messages

We will also be pleased to print your valentine messages be they anonymous or an open public celebration of affection. Please send your messages with a maximum of 25 words (25ish – we’re not counting) to [email protected]

Royal Romance

For those seeking to impress the hot new love of their life, or those who have moved passed such onerous demands but none the less enjoy the finer side of dining, take a look at the Royal Plazas simply superb valentine celebration menu. The seven course banquet excels even by their own high standards. The meal includes wine and champagne – and in the unlikely event you still need help to get the juices flowing mother nature’s own Viagra comes  in provided in the oyster course.

There is also an excellent option to stay overnight at 30€ per person which includes breakfast and a suitable late lovers checkout of 3pm – by when you’ll probably be needing some more oysters.

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Community

Letter From Juan

  • Juan

Happy New Year and I hope you are pleased to see the Ibizan back in circulation. Since I last wrote to you I have been away skiing in France for the first time in seven years. It was not without incidents but luckily nothing to do with the skiing. It was all to do with the journey there and the journey back. We caught the Ferry to Denia and drove to France stopping off near the Border. The next day we headed off to our destination in the French Alps. However, the previous night and during that day a huge amount of snow had fallen and even the experienced French snow clearing teams couldn’t cope. In addition, access to several resorts was closed due to the severe threat of avalanches – the result: chaos on the roads around Chambery, Grenoble and Albertville, traffic jams kilometres long, we ending up stuck in traffic for something like six hours moving a few hundred meters every half hour… At our last exit off the motorway it took us 2 hours to travel 2500 meters. Then up the mountain road to our resort there were police checking you had chains to out on your wheels and cars were abandoned all over the place. People were being camping out in town halls, schools, sports halls, etc. Complete chaos but thanks to our 4 wheel drive we had no trouble at all getting up the hills and through the snow. The upside to all this inconvenience was that unlike the visitors the week before who had green fields and no snow we had beautiful fresh snow and clear blue skies all week. On our return journey, as a result of bright sunshine all week, we had no trouble getting out of resort and as is our custom we decided not to rush back so after a few hours driving we stopped off at Nîmes. What an interesting 2000 year old town with one of the best preserved amphitheatres in the Roman world. It also has the Maison Carrée or square house with its elegant columns and Corinthian capitals. It also claims to be the birthplace of Blue Jeans as the cloth was sent to the States dyed with the “bleu de Gènes (genoan blue) to Levi Strauss for the miners and the batch was number501 de Nîmes. So it is difficult to see how it was called denim and blue jeans! I could go on but I have still to complete my journey. The next day we stopped at the Parador in Tortosa, on the river Ebro, just North of Valencia. I can only say that both Nîmes and Tortosa are well worth a visit. Our journey ended up a bit like the start, the Ferry was late arriving and leaving and then when we got to Eivissa the garage door would not open and we were stuck in our car, in the garage whilst they searched for a technician! About forty five minutes later we were released from our cell and drove safely home. Can’t say the trip was dull. Here’s to an interesting 2015. Yours, Juan.

View from the Pew

Rev. Dr. Peter Pimentel of the English-speaking church of Ibiza will be leading the Alpha course on both the West side as well as the East side of our island. The intro Alpha Supper was a huge success with a delicious three course meal provided by Art and Rose at Can Truy! A huge thanks to you both for your hospitality and generosity!

The intro DVD theme, “Is there more to life than this”, was received with interest and enthusiasm. If you missed the supper, you still have time to join the ten week course which is free of any obligation or cost.

The Alpha Course explores and tackles the “big questions” in a relaxed, low-key interactive small group atmosphere where you can, if you wish, share your thoughts or just listen. All questions or comments are welcome – there are no questions too challenging or too simple.

Who is Alpha for? Everyone. No matter what your age, nationality or religious beliefs, you are welcome! It is ideal for those wanting to investigate Christianity or simply to brush up on the basics. Nearly 20 million people around the world have experienced the Alpha Course. It is taught in 112 languages in 70,000 churches worldwide. Alpha gives a fresh and relevant approach to Christianity and it is also fun and entertaining. For more info, please contact: Rosi 619523053 or Tyke 636501110

Next Service: Sun Feb 1st at 9:30am BCP Communion and at 11am Service of the Word with Praise and Worship, San Rafael.

It’s Good To Talk

  • Kate Stillman

Hi Everyone

Due to the January break there is no letter this week so I thought I would take the opportunity to let you know about two new groups that will be starting in Mach that may be of interest to some of you. They are very different so take a moment to read if you can – thank you.

  • Support Group for those with Life Altering Diagnosis

This is a support group where people who have been affected by a life altering diagnosis can meet others, maybe not with the same diagnosis but one that has changed their life and possibly bring up similar issues to you. We will meet once a week and you will be able to receive and offer support on any practical as well as emotional aspects that you choose. It is not a Psychotherapy group though elements of therapy may come into play at certain points. The group will be facilitated by myself and my colleague Jess Johnson. There are many diagnosis that can leave us feeling bewildered, anxious and lost so this group is open to anyone. Examples might be: Depression, HIV, Anxiety, MS, Hepatitis, Addiction, Cancer, a stroke, a trauma (physical or emotional) plus many more. This will be a safe and Confidential space for you to be able to share whatever you choose and it is absolutely fine for you to choose not to share what your issue is until you feel safe and comfortable to do so.

If you would like to join the group it will take place on Tuesdays at 1pm in San Lorenzo starting March 3rd. Please contact

[email protected]

for directions and if you require any further information. This group is Free of charge.

  • Women’s Group “Relationships and our part in them”

This is a Psychotherapy Group for women, focusing on the different relationships we have in our lives, and the part we play in them. It is a wellness group where clients will be encouraged to explore and learn something about their lives as women which they can then take back into the wider world to improve the life they have. The group will be facilitated by Jess Johnson and supported by myself. Jess is a therapist working on the island and is trained in Transactional Analysis Psychotherapy. Group therapy is more than a support group and as such will be bound by the ethical guidelines of the BACP of which we are both members.

The first meeting of the group will be on Tuesday 3rd March at 10am in San Lorenzo and the charge will be 10€. This will be a closed group lasting 12 weeks, with an option to extend, and your commitment from week two will be required, however no commitment is necessary after our first session, so please do come along to find out more. If you would like more information please feel free to contact Jess via e mail

[email protected]

or myselfthe e mail above. Finally please keep the letters and e-mails coming.

Warm regards,

Kate.

For contact details see Kate’s advert in local services.

Postbag

Thank you from Concord Lodge No.66

As Master of Concord Lodge No.66 I would like to thank everybody who supported our Events last year which enabled us to present a cheque toConcern in Ibiza & FormenteraSunday for 1600€.

In addition I would like to thank all the people who attended theLunchgave generously to this year’s Charity1000€. I look forward to seeing lots of people at our final event of the yearNightLa Casita Valverde on April 11th. Thanks once again to everyone who came to ourLunch.

Yours, Michael MacDonald.

Thank you from Age Concern

It is with many thanks that President Tony Curtis and members of Age Concern thank Concorde Lodge No.66 for their generous donation presented at the Burns Luncheon celebration. This sum will go towards helpingmake life easier and more bearable for many of our residents in their golden years.

Dee Facey-Thorne.

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Mind Body & Soul

Creating a Wellness Ritual
  • Sabina Brownstein

It’s the beginning of a New Year and many of you are filled with enthusiasm to start living a more healthy and balanced life. The way to turn these good intentions into reality is by developing new positive habits. One of the easiest and best ways to get started is by creating a daily morning ritual. That means every day, first thing in the morning… before you turn on your phone, start rushing around, checking e-mails, answering calls, etc. you take some time to get energized and set the tone for the rest of the day.

Begin by waking up slowly and gently stretching your body in all directions – similar to the way a cat stretches when it gets up. This will increase your circulation, improve your flexibility… and it feels so good! Next, take a moment to think of at least three things that you are grateful for and name them out loud. This will elevate your mood, increase your energy level, and get you started in a positive frame of mind. It is important to find time for a short meditation (as little as five minutes) as this is a key part of your daily routine.

Find a quiet space where you will not be disturbed and then sit comfortably. It is not necessary to sit cross-legged or in any other special way – just make sure that your spine is straight, and you can use cushions to help you do that. Now that you are comfortable the next step is to close your eyes and concentrate on your breath. Watch your abdomen as it gently expands when you breathe in, and gently contracts as you breathe out… expanding to allow air into the lungs… contracting to ease the air out. Your breathing is always smooth and natural – never forced. In this relaxed state you can then begin to visualize the wonderful day that is ahead of you. Keep your eyes closed and picture everything unfolding just the way you want it to be. Hold that vision and really feel what it will be like to have a beautiful and successful day.

It is also important to get your body energised, so a short session of Yoga, Qi-Gong or other energy exercises will help you to feel grounded in your body and ready to move into the day. Playing your favourite song in the morning is another great way to lift up your mood, and enjoying an invigorating morning shower helps to wake up every cell of your body. As you can see, a morning ritual doesn’t have to take much of your time. Devoting just 15 minutes every morning to your health and happiness is enough to start the day in a positive and empowering way. It all begins by having the intention and commitment to do it every day, and to resist the temptation to turn on your phone or computer. The good news is that it takes your body only about 21 days to integrate a new habit pattern. After that it becomes much easier… an automatic part of your everyday routine… like brushing your teeth or combing your hair. So set your alarm 15 minutes earlier and give it a try… it’s really worth it.

For contact details see Sabina’s advert in local services.

Epilepsy

  • Kevin Russell

The brain is by far the most complex organ in the human body. It is made up of many specialised areas that have different tasks but work together for a well coordinated end product; movement, sight or speech for example. Many functions of the brain are not fully understood. There are billions of nerve cells which intercommunicate in innumerable ways through connections called synapses. The largest areas are: the brain stem which controls basic functions like breathing and sleep, the cerebellum which coordinates coordination and balance and the cortex of the cerebrum which is responsible for thinking and voluntary movements. All of this is surrounded by thin layers or tissue called the meninges.

Epilepsy is a disease of the central nervous system (neurological disorder) in which the neural activity becomes disrupted causing seizures and often unconsciousness. Because the abnormal electrical activity can occur in any part of the brain, seizures can affect what the brain controls i.e. almost everything. Classical symptoms include confusion, reduced consciousness, jerking movements, absentness and loss of bladder control. Other seizures may occur unnoticed. A single seizure isn’t a diagnosis of epilepsy as many people can have seizures for different but transient reasons such as high fever. Causes include head injury, infectious diseases such as AIDS, genetic predisposition, other brain conditions such as stroke and developmental disorders for example autism.

Other problems are secondary to the seizures themselves. Many people injure themselves if they fall during a seizure and there is always a danger of drowning or car accidents if swimming or driving when a seizure occurs. Many people will be prohibited to drive depending on the grade of the epilepsy. Diagnosis commonly includes EEG (electroencephalogram), CT or MRI scan. An EEC looks at electrical activity in the brain (brain wave patterns) recording differences during a seizure.

Risk factors include almost anything that stresses the body; fever, alcohol, emotional stress, sleep deprivation, hormonal changes and drug and other medications.

Mostly epilepsy is well controlled by medication allowing the person to have a normal life. Sometimes people with epilepsy can have refractory seizures, which means the seizures continue although they are taking medication. Finding the right medication (or combinations of) and doses can be complex so seizures may continue until the balance and medication and personal triggers have been identified.

Surgery can be performed if the seizure has been identified to originate in a specific area of the brain. That part of the brain can be removed if it doesn’t interfere too much with other brain activities. Deep brain stimulation is the implantation of electrodes in the brain with a connecting battery also in the skull or chest that sends impulses to the affected area to prevent seizures. Some people can have an aura, which is a sensation of smell, colour or lights before they have a seizure.

If you want me to discuss any health related issue please get in touch via my email below or see my advert.

[email protected]

Tarotscope

Thursday  29th January to Wednesday 4th February

ARIES – Ten of Wands

Pause, stop running round in circles. If you’re over doing it then for goodness sake, delegate! Nourishing the soul and taking care of You should be top of your list. Stressing out will get you and important projects nowhere fast and you will block progress with negative thinking. If you keep calm you’ll discover a way out of a dilemma.

TAURUS – Queen of Swords

This Queen’s energy is strong and resilient. She’s not easily swayed by emotions and is clearheaded; don’t be taken in by a sob story, set your boundaries. You’re caring and compassionate by nature, but that doesn’t mean that other should see your kindness as a weakness or that you’re gullible. Libra, Gemini or Aquarian women offer wise counsel if needed.

GEMINI – King of Swords

Use your head this week; don’t be tempted to give in to emotional outbursts, action through intellect speaks louder than words! By all means make sweeping changes; either with a partner, relative or close associates who, until recently, has called the shots. Now, theirs is not the only game in town. Air sign men, Libra, Gemini or Aquarius prove supportive.

CANCER – Four of Swords

This card advises you to take a back seat and to take life easy; withdraw from a hectic lifestyle and take stock of the past few months. Enjoy being in the NOW, before making plans for the future. Meditation, yoga, tai chi, chill music etc. are all good methods for helping you to unwind. Be peaceful in all your dealings.

LEO – Judgement

You feel a sense of liberation and anything that’s held you back is now a figment of the past. This is especially true, if in fact, you’ve been the engineer of your own setbacks. Be determined to operate from a place of happiness and contentment; be open with your thoughts and feelings and don’t be afraid to speak your truth.

VIRGO – Justice

This card indicates that life’s about to take you in a new direction. Not everyone will be happy with your choice however, you and only you, should be the judge of that. This week you’re able to see both sides of a sensitive situation and you may be asked to mediate; offer wise but kind advice. Creatively, you’re truly inspired!

LIBRA – Prince of Wands

Consolidate any pending travel plans; business could also be linked to your trip so firm up those appointments and prepare well. You’re full of enthusiasm and your adventurous spirit is infectious. Your renewed optimism inspires others and for some could attract a new romantic admirer. For others, someone has a good business idea and will want you on board.

SCORPIO – The Star (reversed)

Not sure of your life’s purpose? Wondering what’s the plan? Well, the plan is not external, the plan is YOU. Rewrite your personal rule book. Your loss of clarity is only temporary; giving you the opportunity to reconnect at the deepest level of who you really are. You’re a soul with a body, not a body with a soul.

SAGITTARIUS – Five of Wands

Emotionally, it’s time to grips with situation that’s been troubling you for some time. If a friendship, relationship or business association has become problematic or has hit a brick wall, communication’s the key to sorting it out. Find the time to talk things through in an honest, direct but compromising manner. All that’s needed is clarity and… a sense of humour!

CAPRICORN – Ace of Swords

Expect to triumph in at least one area of your life. You’re able to outfox a fox; win applause; seal the deal; get the girl/guy, etc., etc. You get the picture? You’re original and inventive. Those of you involved in the arts or media relations are inspired and ultra-creative. This brings recognition of your talents and the appropriate financial rewards.

AQUARIUS – Prince of Swords

If you feel your principles are being challenged, don’t be afraid to stand up to those who seek to question your motives or integrity. However uncomfortable this will feel at times; you’re now learning how important it is to set boundaries within personal or career situations that are important to you. Be firm but fair. You’re not without power, ever.

PISCES – King of Cups

Kind, generous, wise people help you to get the most out of this week. You’re humbled by those who have no agenda but to make your life easier. A big happy event is about to happen, bringing you closer to fulfilling a dream; all very heart-warming indeed! Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces men are your most reliable friend or love prospects.

Information

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Local Life

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International food festival

  • Claire B

From January 24th to March 28th, seventeen restaurants in Ibiza Town are participating in the 4th ‘Patrimoni Gastronòmic’ event and are offering special menus for 18€. The restaurants have a themed menu that honours the importance of gastronomy in the different countries and cities where UNESCO has awarded the accolade of ‘World Heritage’ status. Represented this year are menus from Ibiza, Peru, Galicia, Mallorca, Menorca, Paris, Cuenca, Toledo, Mexico, USA, India, Asturias, Morocco and Italy.

The participating restaurants are Ca n’Alfredo, Can Moreta, Corxus, Coralo, El Cigarral, Hard Rock Cafe, Kathmandu, Ke Kafé, La Cava, La Marea, Mesón El Gallego, Nino & Co., Peter Pan Ibiza, Sa Brisa Gastro Bar, Sa Nansa, Sa Qüestió, and S’Ametller. Amongst the pasta, rice, fish and meat dishes all served up with a gastronomic twist, you can try parmesan scallops, sautéed squid with spicy sausage and fried sweet potato, tandoori chicken, fish curry, ceviche with hot pepper sauce, BBQ beef brisket, pigs trotters with stuffed mushrooms, fig ice cream with hot chocolate, millefeuille ensaimada with creme brulee and hazelnut ice cream. There’s plenty on offer to choose from.

The menus cost 18€ (drinks not included) for a starter, main course and dessert. The participating restaurants and the menus on offer and when they are available are all included in the brochure (in Spanish) which can be downloaded from the website:

patrimonigastronomic.com

Facebook: patrimonigastronomic

Consell now hosting football trophy exhibition  (19/1)

The Consell is hosting an exhibition of trophies won by the Spanish national football team at the 2010 World Cup and European Championships in 2008 and 2010. The exhibition will remain open until Wednesday, when an international match between the Spanish and Italian under-17s will be played on the island.

President Vicent Serra stressed the “importance of this event, due to the difficulty of bringing two teams of this quality to the island.”

Serra has encouraged everyone to attend the event, which will be charitable, since the takings will go to several associations. Tickets will cost 2€.

Vila to host the first Gay Pride Ibiza in July (19/1)

From July 8th to 12th, Ibiza will host its first Ibiza Gay Pride Festival, an initiative that will bring a series of playful events and cultural character to the city.

Yesterday, Councillor Lina Sansano, presented the festival, which aims to “re-install Ibiza as a standard for gay tourism and revitalise the neighbourhoods of la Marina and the harbour.” The event will take place just after the Gay Pride event in Madrid.

The festival activities include a march through the city on July 11th plus lectures, presentations, art exhibitions, documentaries, workshops and sports activities.

Santa Cruz Choir celebrates its tenth anniversary (17/1)

The Choir of the Church of Santa Cruz in Vila was born ten years ago thanks to an initiative by the then priest of Santa Cruz, and now Sant Jordi, Pedro López. It has since become one of the most important choral formations on the island and currently consists of 25 members, mostly women. Its director is the Russian Elena Prokhorova, who graduated as a choral and vocal coach in Russia and Germany, but has spent the last nine years in Eivissa. She is also responsible for the choirs of Santa Gertrudis, Sant Carles and Sant Rafel.

Limekiln to be built at the Santa Agnès Fiestas (16/1)

Yesterday Sant Antoni presented the Fiestas de Santa Agnès de Corona, which celebrates its big day next Wednesday, January 21st. It is one of the most rural of parties that highlights some of the Ibiza traditions that have been forgotten over time. This year, almond trees day will be February 28th and a limekiln will be built for display on February 27th at the feast of the ‘Sitja’ of Sa Rota d’en Coca. Furthermore, today Sant Antoni celebrates its big day with the traditional Mass and procession and the blessing of animals that takes place every year in the Vila de Portmany.

New art exhibition at the Coves Blanques lighthouse

Councillor for Education and Culture of the town of Sant Antoni, Sara Ramon, and Raimond Jaume, responsible for Foreign Affairs at the Balearic Islands Port Authority (APB) this morning presented an exhibition of the works of the Fifth painting and Photography Contest ‘Ports and Fog’ featuring over 40 pieces of work. The exhibition will open on Wednesday January 21st at 7 pm at the Faro de ses Coves Blanques, and is one of the many events taking place as part of the Festival of Sant Antoni 2015.

The APB intends to take the exhibition to la Savina and Valencia next.

‘Peix Si!’promoting local fish. (21/1)

The Consell has updated the local cook book ‘Fish Yes!’ for it’s 2nd edition print run of 7,000 copies to be distributed free of charge throughout the island.

The book promotes the use of Ibiza species that are currently losing prominence though still having great culinary value.

Launching the edition Minister of Fishing Antoni Marí said the book contains 26 recipes cooked by Chefs Antonia Ripoll and Joan Tur. The recipes are all traditional dishes of Ibiza but also with some twists and innovations. Speaking of the importance of local produce Mari said “we must ensure these types of fish do not disappear from our kitchens”

All You Need Is A Love Of Music

  • Cala Llonga Choir leaders

We were very pleasantly surprised by the number of people, both women and men, who over the last year, have shown a desire to come along to sing and become involved in forthcoming events in the village of Cala Llonga, however we are now looking to increase our numbers. For many it’s an opportunity to meet and integrate with their neighbours and fellow villagers, or even to discover hidden talents. Some of you might be wondering if you’re doing the right thing, if your voice is up to it, or if you have enough knowledge of music. To all of these questions the answer is definitely yes. We are an amateur choir, (Cantaires Cala Llonga) simply music lovers who over the coming weeks will be preparing a medley of well known Beatles songs. We have the privilege to be able to count on Juan Francisco Ballesteros as our musical director, an experienced musician specialised in choirs, who is able to bring out the best in each one of us. Our next meeting is on Monday 2nd of February at 8.30pm in the new village social centre “Souvenirs Catalina”, next to Supermarket Maria in the centre of Cala Llonga, so why not pop in to see just how enjoyable singing with a group of other people can be.

For more information call Pedro 626 295623 or Jane on 639 169701.

Films in English

  • Claire B

If you haven’t been yet, check out The Black Door Cinema Club in Ibiza town. The Black Door shows mainly independent films in the small cosy cinema, where you can watch a film on the big screen from a comfy armchair. The lounge bar sells a range of drinks (including wine, cava and beer) plus popcorn and hot dogs, plus there’s an art gallery and event space for public events, which is also available for hire. There’s currently a film screening every Tuesday evening but there are also occasional specials, including films for children.

You need to be a member to be able to buy tickets, but you can sign up for free on the website. Gold membership is also available and costs 25€ and gives access to advance priority bookings for films, exhibitions and public events in addition to a discounted guest ticket booking option. Just sign up for membership on the website (see below for URL) and once you’ve signed up you’ll receive weekly emails of what’s on.

Check the website for the full schedule which also has trailers for each of the films being shown. Most films shown are in English, but it will say if not or if there are subtitles. Tickets are purchased online and cost 10€. Gold members can purchase guest tickets for 9€. Note that you can’t buy tickets on the door – they have to be purchased online in advance.

http://www.blackdooribiza.com

Facebook: Black Door Cinema Club Ibiza

Classifieds & Local Services

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Sport

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Jezza´s Sports Report

  • Jeremy Parmenter

Yes, Sports fans, we’re back! Hope y’all had an enjoyable New Year, wherever you were and with the end of the month nigh, have (a) kept to your resolutions and (b) got over any Januaryitis that, we are informed, we may suffer from!

It seems like ages since my last report and such a lot has happened in the sporting world since the New Year.

  • Tennis

With the year’s first Major, the Aussie Open, now well in to it’s 2nd and final week, biggest shock so far has been the defeat of Roger Federer by the Italian Seppi in the 3rd round, the first time in 11 years that the Fed hasn’t reached the semis. Still, as he said, he wasn’t on his game that day and these things happen. His misfortune is to our Andy’s benefit as he was due to meet the Fed in the Quarters. However, if he wins through his match against local Aussie hero Nick Kyrgios (good ole Aussie name, for sure!), there’s still a rejuvenated Rafa, a determined Djokovic and current Aussie champion Wawrinka to negotiate, so good luck to him.

  • Rugby Union

The qualification Groups in the European gongs have just been completed and in the Champions Cup it’s good news for England who managed to get 4 teams through to the quarters for the first time since 1988. All 4 still face tough tasks to reach the semis, all 4 will have to win away. Wasps have the most daunting task at current champions Toulon, while Northampton and Saracens also go to France, at Clermont and Racing Metro respectively. Bath face multi-winners Leinster in the Emerald Isle.

In the Challenge Cup, England are again well represented, with London Irish, Exeter, Newcastle and Gloucester already qualified for the last 8, joined by Cardiff, Newport, Edinburgh and Connacht and would you believe it, no French sides!

In the Premiership, Northampton and Bath sitting 1st and 2nd respectively with only a point between them, still lead the charge for the play-offs, with Saracens 8 points behind followed by a rejuvenated Wasps and Exeter in 4th and 5th.

  • Football

Lots has happened here but let’s start with the FA Cup which saw the 3rd Round take place at the turn of the year followed by the 4th Round last w/end. As you can imagine, I’m still in shock but suffice to say, who would have believed that 4 of the top 6 in the Premier would have been beaten, especially at home, by so-called lesser opposition. The two favourites, Chelsea and Man City were beaten by Bradford and Middlesboro’ respectively. Chelsea, who started the day as 9/2 favourites to win the cup, took what should have been an unassailable lead 2-0 against league 1 Bradford, however the team who started the day at 1000/1 rewrote FA Cup folklore coming away 4-2 winners. On any other day Middlesbrough’s turning the tables on City at Main Road in their 0-2 away win would have had the headlines but on a weekend of shock after shock they had to settle for second billing.

Southampton lost to Palace and Tottenham lost to Leicester by a last minute goal. Even then, Man Utd and Liverpool face replays, Utd after drawing 0-0 with Cambridge, another result that would have normally held the back page as the shock of the round, and the Pool could only achieve the same goaless draw at Anfield against Bolton. Real winners and now arguably favourites were current holders Arsenal but even they only scraped through 3-2 at Brighton. Nevertheless, a big well done to all those “lesser” teams for knocking out the big boys and good luck to them all in the next round!

The League Cup next and both semifinals are on a tightrope with both first legs exciting and tense affairs. Chelsea, up against Liverpool, drew 1-1 at Anfield and played the second leg on Tuesday at the Bridge, and the  league cup offered the Blues  some cup solace beating Liverpool 1-0 after extra time. Tottenham, having scraped a 1-0 win at the Lane in the first leg, face surprise team Sheffield Utd on Wednesday, so by the time you read this you’ll know who will be facing Chelsea in the Final next month at Wembley.

In the Premier League, at the beginning of the year, Man City had pulled back the 8 points that they were behind Chelsea, but since then a draw and a loss at home to Arsenal to two Pensioner wins have opened the lead up to 5 points – but also a 9 goal difference which could become vitally important at the end of the season. They meet at the Bridge on Saturday in what may very well be a title decider – a “must not lose” game for City. Could be a cracker! There’s a great ding-dong hotting up for the top 4 and Champions League places as Southampton, much to everybody’s surprise after last  season’s new year collapse, are very much still up there but trail City by 5 points with Man Utd only 2 points behind them.

At the danger end, there’s only 5 points between Sunderland in 16th and Leicester at the bottom with Burnley, Hull and QPR sandwiched in between. In the Championship, great to see my top tips for promotion Bournemouth and Ipswich (gotta say that to keep Our Ed happy!) in the top 3, but it ain’t gonna be easy as only 3 points separate the top 5 with Middlesboro’, Derby and surprisingly Brentford in the mix.

(Ed – I have to concede I can’t remember any pre-season tips of Bournemouth and Ipswich so I’ll take your word for that – we appreciate your confidence, but any mention of the championship this week would not be complete without a nod to 6th placed Watford who, 0-2 down at half time to bottom of table Blackpool, scored on 47, 53, 54, 59 and 3 more to end it 7-2. Either the best half time team talk ever, orslipped something in the tea.)

It’s also the last few days of the transfer window and biggest deal so far is Man City’s acquisition of Swansea striker Bony for 25m+ but watch out for Chelsea’s Schurrle possibly going to Wolfsburg, the Blues possible purchase of Colombia and Fiorentina winger Cuadrado, Arsenal’s purchase of Gabriel which I understand is almost a done deal and a possible move from OT to West Ham for Darren Fletcher.

In our host country, it’s as you were after La Liga’s mid-winter break with Real Madrid leading Barça by a point but with a game in hand, with Atlético a further 3 points behind. The big game came in the Copa del Rey where Real were beaten in both legs by Atlético, who now need to win by two clear goals to reach the semis, after losing 1-0 to Barça at the Nou Camp in the first leg.

  • Cricket

In England’s current pre World Cup ODI TriSeries in Oz with the hosts and India involved, not too bad so far, having trounced current champions India by 9 wickets, but Captain Morgan’s team still have this Aussie chip on their shoulder as they have lost both games to their hosts, admittedly only on the penultimate ball in the last game. Still if Australia beat India tomorrow morning then England are guaranteed a final place, even if they lose to India later this week and, yes, you’ve guessed it, the Aussies in the Final! Still, it’s all good experience for England and a great warm-up for the real biz to come at the WC in Feb. Finally, thank goodness, Australia’s Big Bash is almost over, mainly because we won’t have to listen to KP’s bleatings and pleas to be taken back in to the England fold. Just face it, mate, altho’ you, on your day are a magnificent batsman, we don’t need your incredible ego or your one-dimensional talents any more. You’re surplus to requirements and the sooner you realise that, the better for English cricket!

On that note, that’s all I’ve time for, and until next week, mind how you go!

Ibiza Rugby

Ibiza 48-0 Shamrock

  • Mike Blackburn

England’s Fly half Owen Farrell picked up a knee injury last weekend and joins a long list of injured players leading up to the RBS 6 Nations due to start in Wales Fri 6th Feb. Meanwhile Ibiza CR have the luxury of an abundance of players with several returning from injury and extended holidays.

With a very strong squad they approached last weekend’s game vs Shamrock (Mallorca) in confident mood. Ibiza took an early lead after Ruben Castillo Morales dropped the first kick of the match to set up scrum against in favour of Shamrock. A powerful scrum through Oscar Moratoya and Jaimie Safar Dutton shunted Shamrock off the ball and allowed Sparrano to pick up accelerate through a nervy defense. It became the blueprint for the first half with dominant scrum forcing the visitors backwards and creating front foot ball for the back line.

Front foot ball is easy to attack from and difficult to defend against moving backwards and Ibiza’s fly half had no excuse for failing to unleash his back line from such quality ball on at least half a dozen occasions in the first half. So poor was the passing from Sebastian Santa Maria that he failed to hit the target of his outside backs on 7 out of 9 passes or the scoring would have been far more prolific. Unforgivable!

By half time Ibiza were comfortably 35 points to 0 ahead, it should have been 50. With a comfortable lead changes were made at half time across both forward and backs. The most significant waswho had a profitable afternoon in the scrum. He was replaced in the front row by Iker Monge Maso who has played at the highest level in Spain in the European Cup but struggled in the tight going backwards for an uncomfortable 40 minutes. It demonstrated just how effective Moratoya had been in the first 40 mins.

Fortunes in the scrum were reversed and Ibiza found themselves going backwards. Untidy ball going backwards compounded Santa Maria’s ability to supply his backline with any ball at all. Despite the challenges in the scrum Lucas Cassalles and Danny Langley Ribas were industrious in the loose with a rampaging Sparrano capitalizingthe ball they provided, all three were outstanding.

Ibiza’s defence was only challenged on a couple of occasions and it lacked the enthusiasm with which they go forward with ball in hand, being slow to organize and using the referee’s whistle as an excuse to rest. They face Ponent B next Saturday and will need to show more discipline in their defensive organisation. On a very positive note they retain a full squad, a clean sheet and for the second week running they completed the game with no yellow cards and a much improved approach to self management. Final score Ibiza CR 48-0 Shamrock.

We are playing at home this Saturday against 2nd place Ponent RC ‘B’ from Mallorca and the K.O. is at 1pm. Our last 6 matches of the Balearic League are pretty vital to us getting into the play-off places and challenging for the championship. We are currently 5th and our goal is to win at least 5 of these remaining matches and see where that gets us.

This Saturday the club is putting on a free bus to and from Can Misses rugby ground so that people from San Antonio can get to watch their local team and hopefully drum up a bit more support.

The bus will leave the San Antonio Bus Station at 12 midday and return at 4pm. We will have drinks and hot food in the bar plus we’ll have live televised rugby after the match.
Any more info please call Mike Blackburn on 600 897 508 or Jason Harvey on 616148730.

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