ALICANTE airport, officially Alicante-Elche Airport, will now be called Alicante-Elche Miguel Hernandez Airport.
Confirmation coincided with celebrations marking the 110th anniversary of the Orihuela-born poet’s birth.
A Republican, he was jailed at the end of the Civil War and died of tuberculosis in prison at the age of 31 in March 1942.
The central government’s Minister of Public Works, Jose Luis Abalos, announced that the procedures for the name-change were now underway.
Alicante and Spain needed to pay tribute to Hernandez, Abalos added, and they could do so by printing his name “on a never-ending cloudless sky.”
At a solemn ceremony in Valencia, after reading one of Hernandez’s poems, Ximo Puig, president of the Generalitat declared that it was fitting that Alicante airport, “the Valencian Community’s greatest doorway”, should bear Hernandez’s name.
Puig also called on the Valencian Community population to listen to Miguel Hernandez, whose work “overflowed with commitment towards others, loyalty towards love and friendship, and a profound social conscience.”
Taking notice of what Hernandez had to say so long ago was doubly important at present, as Spain battled to overcome the Covid-19 crisis, Puig said.
Meanwhile, there was satisfaction in Orihuela, where the poet was born, where councillors from all parties represented at the town hall had voted to add Orihuela’s name to the request to change Alicante-Elche Airport’s name.
“This is a great opportunity to ensure that Miguel Hernandez’s hometown should be present at all levels while paying homage to the poet, especially on the 110th anniversary of his birth,” said Orihuela mayor, Emilio Bascuñana.
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