COLIN TOFTS’ new exhibition in Artefactus (Javea) is entitled “Three favourite places.”
Open until January 4, it features Tofts’ paintings of Ceret and Collioure in France and Relleu, inland from Villajoyosa - the favourite places of the title.
The contrasts of Ceret’s cool mountain air, Collioure’s seaside light and the hot terraces of Relleu give each series of work a very different atmosphere and colour emphasis, Tofts explained.
Artefactus is beside the Post Office in Javea’s old town, two minutes from the Plaça de la Constitucion car park. It is open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 1.30pm and 5pm until 8.30pm.
THIRTEEN years on from when Elche's Palmeral was declared a Unesco World Heritage Site, a group of eight architects are analysing the future of the site.
The architects, meeting in a local coffee shop, believe the future of the palmeral and gardens lies in restoring them to agricultural use of a certain degree. The Palmeral is Europe's largest palm grove.
Ideas of rural tourism or the installation of a restaurant in one of the few traditional houses left, are just some of the alternatives offered by the group to recover abandoned plots and ensure Elche's Palmeral reputation remains. They also discussed getting landowners back on site to prevent the abandonment and deterioration of Hort dels Pontos: “Right now, the orchards are subject to various problems, because they are uninhabited and no one can prevent all kinds of vandalism being committed,” lamented Jose Antonio Pascual.
Procoro del Real and Antoni Baile added: “Elche has been built around a palm tree, and we can not lose sight of that. Palm trees are from before and must always be respected when undertaking any project.”
NEARLY 10 per cent of new businesses in Elche belong to people born outside Spain. Eighty-five of the 915 licences that the town hall has handled so far this year were granted to foreigners, the majority from China, North Africa and Latin America.
Most are located in the town centre or the Carrus and 40 per cent of the permits were related to the catering and leisure industries.
Reflecting Elche’s past reputation as one of Spain’s important footwear producers, a shoe-sewing workshop was amongst the new businesses opened by a foreign resident. There was also a launderette, a business consultancy and a language academy.
ALFAZ DEL PI has some of the province’s oldest trees. They include two carobs in Foia Brell and Cami de Soler that are respectively 800 and 300 years old.
A pine at Finca Roca is 350 years, making it the oldest in the town. It is in a “delicate state” and receiving special attention from the Environment department and municipal biologist, Jose Manuel Perez.
The trees, all officially-listed monuments, were recently pruned and their plots weeded and tidied up. Information panels will soon be installed at their sites, giving details of the trees and their history, announced Environment councillor Vicente Soler.
VILLAJOYOSA’S municipal archive has digitally copied more than 200 documents relating to the area. All refer to Villajoyosa and neighbouring municipalities but are stored outside the Marina Baja.
They include a record of the gift in 1270 of castles and estates in Orcheta, Finestrat and Torres by Jaime I to Berenguer Alfonso and his family. The original remains in the Crown of Aragon archive but can now be consulted by investigators and students inside La Vila itself.
In a 1653 document from the Kingdom of Valencia archives Felipe IV gives “the Villa Joiosa” permission to construct a dam in Relleu. Further documents relating to Villajoyosa’s Augustinian monastery - expropriated during secularisation measures in 1836 - have also been copied from those now stored in the National Historical Archive.
The new copies complement Villajoyosa’s existing digital copies of parchments dating from the 15th and 16th centuries. There are also copies of town council tomes between 1709 and 1752, account books from 1708 to 1760 and plenary meetings from 1862 to 1941.
ALICANTE freemason Thomas Ronning is set to climb Mount Aconcagua in the Andes, Argentina. Known as the ‘White Sentinel’ the mountain is 6,962 metres above sea level with the charity climb expected to last 20 days.
He has the support of the Grand Provincial Lodge of Valencia as he embarks on his ‘White Sentinel Charity Climb’ with all money raised going to the Red Cross for the purchase of a mobile health centre; a refurbished motor home that cover the health and hygiene needs of the homeless across Alicante province.
TWO people have been arrested for hiding 2.2 kilos of marihuana in a child's toy. The 31 and 48 year-old were arrested at Alicante bus station after police sniffer dogs detected the drug, smuggled inside the packaging of a doll, during a random search on buses.
The passengers were on the Malaga-Barcelona route and although no one claimed the doll, the bus driver identified who had put the package in to the hold. the doll was seized.
CARING expatriates have been given a pat on the back for their charitable activities. European residents are proving they are integrating and wanting to improve the society they chose to live in by fundraising and supporting local causes, according to a local councillor.
Foreigners are digging deep and providing resources for the health service of the Alicante province, which has not gone unnoticed: "The foreign community is very generous.
They know that the situation is very difficult and they want to help," said Gunilla Herrero, Councillor for Social Welfare in Alfaz del Pi, adding: “They are aware of cuts in the welfare state, so they are very aware of contributing to the maintenance of health services.”
One of the most generous donations made in the province was to the Spanish Association Against Cancer (AECC), when the British community raised €400,000 in just six months, enabling the purchase of a new mammogram machine.
Pablo Enriquez, president of the AECC of Alicante said: "Europeans have a very different mentality from ours. They unite and mobilise to get donations, especially now with the economic crisis."
THE Vega Baja is leading the recovery of the construction sector in Alicante province, according to Provia, the Association of Promoters of the Province.
The number of homes built in 2013 will exceed 700 by the end of the year, compared with 400 last year and two out of five new homes built in the region are in Alicante province.
The news comes as reports emerge that municipal and regional councils have approved plans for the construction of 600 new homes in Daya Vieja, one of the smallest villages of the Vega Baja. The new properties could potentially more than double its current population.
Mayor Rafael Vives, said the plans form part of the new general urban plan which has to be formally approved to get the project off the ground.
The property market in the region remains dependent on foreign customers. Scandinavian, German, Dutch, Belgian and Russians are among customers seeking new housing whilst the British lead the re-sale market.
RESIDENTS from the El Gantxo urbanisation in San Vicente are fighting for postal deliveries.
When the town hall, mediating between service-provider Correos and residents, installed groups of post-boxes at seven points throughout the municipality, El Gantxo resisted.
Refusing to accept the measure the urbanisation called on the corporation to defend residents’ rights. They live only 250 metres off established routes and should receive normal deliveries, they argued.
After originally backing these claims, which Correos has systematically rejected, the town hall advised El Gantxo residents to accept the post-boxes. They are determined to stand out for home deliveries and are now debating their next plan of action, a spokesman said.