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Friday, February 26, 2016

Walk and Pleno

The next Town Hall organised walk is to be on Sunday 6th March leaving from the village church in Los Llanos del Peral at 1100. The walk will be approximately 7 kilometres in distance (which is just short of 5 miles). It is described as being of medium difficulty. It will visit the antique washing area in Almajalejo.

We are to hold our Pleno this morning to agree the 2016 budget. Unfortunately one of my initiatives cannot yet be announced due to new rules being brought in at the end of last year and I need to await a couple of informs from the Junta. The main thing is that the finance for the help desk to continue, as it has been doing, is to be agreed.

As many of you know Sunday is Andalucia Day and the banks will be closed on Monday however, the market in Huercal Overa will still be open and the market bus will be running. Although at the current rate of usage I doubt it will be able to continue after the summer. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Migas Migas!! Andalucia Day

Our Deputy Mayor, Maria Dolores Garcia ,(Lola) has organised a teach-in at the Renfe on Sunday 28th February at midday (12 noon). So, if you have always wondered how to make original and proper Migas ,this is your opportunity. Plus the opportunity to have a tasting after the cooking.

The lesson will take about an hour and all the ingredients will be provided. So come along and enjoy an hour of Spanish cuisine education. Far better than these Ramsey type chefs on telly.

This is the first of a programme of authentic Spanish cooking lessons  which Lola wants to hold so lets see what the interest is.

If this opportunity interests you please let me know as they need to have an idea on numbers to provide the correct amount of ingredients so please email or telephone me 610194260 to register for your place.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Monday 22nd February

Returned to the office today as we had a commission meeting to approve a few things including a process by which the Town Hall can establish fees for the use of public buildings and charges for irrigation and other water processes.

We are also to approve the budget to present to Pleno for 2016.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016


Just an update on my recent hiccup!

One week ago I tested positive for Chronic Heart Disease and was urgently admitted to Hospital in Huercal Overa. The Spanish Health service has been fantastic and very efficient (less than a week from diagnosis to angiogram and treatment!). 

I did not make everyone aware of the diagnosis (I only informed the Town Hall, family and a few close friends) but, despite this, word seems to have got around!

I have to express my, and Sue's, heartfelt thanks and appreciation to good friends, colleagues and family for their emotional and physical support. 

Without the amazing help of these people it would have proved very difficult for us. My colleagues in the Town Hall, neighbours and good friends have all rallied round to help and the loving messages of support from family and friends has made me appreciate what a wonderful group of people are in my life.

Special thanks to Lyn and Mike Yendell for for making themselves available 24x7. 
I will return to work next Monday.

Thanks again all.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Carnival Zurgena 20th February

We have our village Carnival to be held on Saturday the 20th February.

The Carnival parade starts at 5.30pm from the Town Square with music and everyone dressed up. They then process through the village until 7.0pm when they go to the Theatre. There there will be the Chirigota where individuals sing and make jokes. After this the competition is judged for the best costume of the Carnival.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Temporary Leave of Absence

Just a quick post to inform you that following a visit to the hospital today I will taking a leave of absence of week or more. I have passed on all outstanding issues to Jose Manuel who will manfully hold the fort on his own until I can return. If you need to contact him for any issues please do so either at the office or on his mobile 687531499.

Thanks you for your patience.

GREAT Services

Over the past 9 months I have become aware that the services that we provide at the help desk, in the Town Hall of Zurgena, to citizens or future citizens, in providing them with detailed information regarding the specific legal situation of properties, medical situations, catastral issues, electricity and water supplies and PGOU progressions, that this is a service which could be of benefit many others in the area of Northern Almeria. Existing or future potential property owners.

The demand for this service has also been noticed by 3 professionals connected with the Town Hall and they have decided to set up a company to provide this service to the wider community. Each has a legal qualification in the fields of urbanism and the technicalities relevant to all such issues. We all wonder what solicitors do for their money here well these 3 men have the experience contact and abilities to provide a much more in depth and legally guaranteed advice service for a fraction of that which solicitors charge.They have contacts with all the Town Halls, the cadastral office etc etc and so can check on the whole gambit of such issues. If you are a resident of Zurgena these details are available free but the idea for these men to establish this company is to provide this to the wider area. 

The 3 gentlemen involved have established an office in Huercal Overa and a website at    Some of you will already know Jose Manuel who will act as an interpreter for all contact for this company, with the english speaking community and his contact number is 687531499. I will place a link on the side bar of the blog.

As you know I do not usually advertise in the text part of my blog but felt that this is such a good idea I would devote a post to it. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016


Due to ill health the library will be closed until Monday 15th February.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

E.U. Ballot & Date for next Walk

As many of you are probably aware the E.U. referendum to be held in the U.K. is open to expats to cast a vote. The best site to visit to understand this situation is the

To forewarn those of you interested our next walk will be organised for Sunday 6th March. No details yet available still looking at options but thought I had better post the date now that we have agreed that. The previous two weekends have something happening anyway and I believe one that we are trying to organise is a lesson in how to make proper Spanish Migas. Will post more when decided.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Last Call for Civil Protection & Renfe Deposits

The TH is trying (at long last) to establish an emergency plan for the area. This necessitates the identification of area representatives who would communicate information to their communities. Obviously NHW coordinators are probably best placed to fulfil this role. But anyone who has an interest in their areas´ protection could volunteer.

The role would be uniformed (provided) trained (provided) and expenses covered. The main function of the role would be similar to NHW eg to communicate instructions or advice from the Town Hall or security services in the event of a major event such as the floods of 2012 or earthquakes!!

The person responsible for compiling the list is Lola Antas and she has to complete her list of volunteers by the end of next week. So if you have a bit of spare time (not a lot) and are community minded please let me know. We would just need you to call into the TH with your NIE or passport and a photo of your face.

Secondly as from the start of this year the Town Hall is going to ask for a deposit for the use of the Renfe building. This deposit is just to cover any damages. It will be €50 but will be refundable after the event.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

2 Lengthy Meetings

This week I have attended two rather lengthy meetings.

The first was on Tuesday evening from 7.0pm until 10.0pm and was primarily discussions regarding what we wanted included in the Provincial Plan for the next few years. I am pleased to say that all the works I asked for were included in the application. This includes all the roads streets which require much work to repair and stabilise.

The second was yesterday with the Chief of the Local Police to discuss current and future management and control of their activities with special attention to security of the citizens. We are in the process of forming a Junta de Seguridad to include Guardia Civil, Polizia Local, Delegate for Security and others to look at security in the valley. Other villages will be invited to attend when this body is established.

We are hoping that we can get all our budgets for 2016 approved next week.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

And Again!!

Another Court decision in favour of the Town Hall of Zurgena.Copied from the Spanish Press yesterday.

The Criminal Court No. 4 of Almeria has cleared the local excorporacion of Zurgena members who were accused of authorising the construction of a residential 94 housingon undeveloped land, considering that City Hall had the technical and legal reportsfavourable to the granting of the license, so the judge has appreciated the absence off ntent in his action.

In his ruling, the judge Marta Inés Sierra attends the position of City Clerk following practiced test in which warns that «at no time had the suspicion that they were doingsomething irregular», and that "never requested the word in full because he thought thateverything was right».

They also point out that the Junta de Andalucía, which was aware of all such agreements adopted in plenary, did not challenge any of the licenses that were granted, so it wasn't until requested review of nursing licenses in previous years when they had knowledge of the possible irregularity of the same.

New Road Layout

I have received a few complaints about the new road layout in front of the garage at La Alfoquia.

The Junta own this road and have decided in their wisdom to make these changes. It may be that the changes were made due to the traffic flow.

We, the Town Hall, had received no advance notification of this alteration and we are making representations to ascertain why these have been done and if they are to remain to increase the warnings and signage as to the change of priority. 

Monday, February 1, 2016


I have been asked by one of our councillors to ascertain if we, as a village community, can qualify for the services of various medical professionals at a health centre.

What we are looking at, is identifying what demand there may be for the following services,

Day Care where you have a relative who would benefit from spending a day in the centre possibly relieving you of the demands or just allowing them a change of aspect.

Physiotherapy where you have a need for regular physiotherapy at the hands of a professional.

If there was a blood pressure and blood test availability.

If you believe you or a relative could benefit from any of these services please let me know. There are grants available which are dependant upon each persons degree of infirmity. So we cannot say at this stage what the financial implications are but they are the same for the Spanish as the english speaking community.