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Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Christmas House Decorating Competition & Square Closure

Just to inform you all that the Town Hall will be visiting the entrants homes, for the above competition, to take pictures of the displays for judging on the evening of Friday 22nd December.

If you wish to enter the competition and have not yet done so please let me have your names addresses and telephone number asap. Closing day is morning of Friday 22nd.

Also to inform all that the square at Plaza del Olmo in Zurgena will be closed to traffic Saturday 23rd Sunday 24th and Monday 25th December and again on the 28th 29th and 30th December for the Medieval Market

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Can you help please

I am trying to trace the below named individuals.

The first few because I have post that the Correos was unable to deliver (if they can get in touch I will deliver) and the remainder need call into the Town Hall to reconfirm that they should still be on the Padron. The last group need to call in and pick up bill from the Dipuatcion otherwise the bills will increase. They are all on my desk. Just ask Jose Manuel

Mr and Mrs  J. Thompson 4, Cuesta de los Pinos
Dennis Roy Johnson Cuesta de los Pinos 22

Melissa Emilia DUKE, Cara Lorca Baza
Nora & Philip STEPHENSON Avnd Andalucia
Kenneth PARR Calle Amapola
Joan Anne &Stuart HOWARD Calle Nervion
David & Malita CAMILLERI Calle Reino Unido
Wouter Gustaff HENNE  Calle Grecia

Charles Allan John ZARD Jardines del Almanzora
Lloyd Llewellyn Peter WILLIAMS     ditto
Terenec Paul WATSON Llanos del Peral.
Thomas George WOOD C Llano
Lydia UNGER Alfoquia 9

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Water Interruption

We (Town Hall of Zurgena) have been informed by GALASA that there has been a breakdown in the water  supply network. They are working to fix it as soon as possible, and expect that by 10:00 H, the areas that are affected, return to have water. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Another Court Victory & First Annual Inter Club Bowling Tournament

Just heard the news that Candido and the old Town Hall have just won another of the outstanding cases against st the grant of building licences. This time it covers the land that surrounds La Vida Bar Restaurant where the one solo house is standing.  After the grant of the PGOU this area can restart the building.

Today Friday 15th December and tomorrow Saturday 16th December the Bowling Club of Zurgena is holding its first  inter club tournament. Clubs from other areas are competing with our own team members for trophies and small monetary prizes.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Winners of the Ruta de Tapas 2017

Best Tapa was awarded by the vote to Bar Catalan with 28.13% of the vote
Best Service was awarded to Restaurante Kalevala 
Prizes for entrants;
Winner of a weekend stay in a rural accommodation was won by Diane Postles. whois back in the UK but will returning in January.
The winner of the Tablet Computer was Alberto Sagarra
The winner of the meal at the winning restaurant was Maria Consuelo Carrion.
Thanks to all who took part.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Garden Refuse Dumping

I had a Spanish lady call into the Town Hall today. The reason she had called in was due to the fact that she had been given a €1200 fine for garden rubbish dumped on her land.

The land is adjacent to Avenida Poetas by the junction with Calle Miguel de Unamuno.

The Fire dept from Albox attended in November and discovered a large amount of garden refuse had been dumped and was considered a fire risk and that was why she was fined. It is very unfair that someone (probably British) has dumped their refuse and yet the landowner has to pay the fine. She can claim the money from the person who did dump it but she would need to be abel to prove it.

So please bear in mind the potential outcome of recklessly dumping garden refuse from both a danger and financial aspect. 

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Christmas House Competition & Calasparra Trip

The Town Hall of Zurgena is promoting a new competition for the most attractively decorated Christmassy house in the municipality.

If you wish to enter the competition please register either through me or in the Town Hall before the 23rd December.

The winner will receive a Christmas Hamper

Over 70 of the residents of Zurgena took part in the Town Hall trip to Calasparra yesterday. We visited the very interesting Rice Museum and heard the history of Calasparra from 12,000 years ago to dat. Next we visited the stunning Sanctuary of Virgen de la Esperanza (which has connections with the one at Saliente) where we also had lunch. After lunch we visited the Cueva del Puerto and walked along 1 of the 6 kilometres of underground passaged through the stalactite and stalagmite filled caves. Unfortunately were prohibited from taking photos inside the caves. Tow of the pictures are of the oldest piece of machinery from the Rice farming as it was made (as many things were) by an English company from Wisbech!

Friday, December 1, 2017

Calasparra Trip & Thanks re AGM

Tomorrows trip is full. In fact we have had to add a  second smaller coach as there is a total of 70 persons going. An email has been sent to all the english speaking trippers to confirm the coach leaves at 0730 from the gasolinera in La Alfoquia or 10 minutes later in Zurgena.

Regarding the Zurgena NHW AGM I have to say a big  thank you to so many who turned out. I estimated about 80 attendees which is very good. The meeting was chaired by Cherry and was less than an hour and, as a reward, the attendees were given free tapas at the conclusion of the meeting. Thanks to all the committee, coordinators and members who attended

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Christmas Market

Sunday 10th December in the Renfe in La Alfoquia will be the 3rd Spanish Christmas Market.

This day there will be various attractuions for the children including an Bouncy Castle and the programme for the day will be

1000 Presentation and stories from the storybook of the Association of Tierra Esparto.

1100 to 1230 Round Table regarding the ecological products of the region

1400 Dance exhibition

1630 Fashion Show.

1730 Close of the market and children Christmas carols.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Sad News

It is with great sadness that I have to inform you of the death of David Shear today (Monday 27th November). He succumbed after a long battle with cancer.

I first met David 8 or more years ago when he volunteered to help set up a website for Neighbourhood Watch, since then David has run the Albox Computer Club for many years. With his skill in this field he was selfless in the amount of time and effort he applied in making it count to help others.

During the past few years David has helped clean, renovate, update and install many computers to schools and other places where no such facilities were available.

He will be sorely missed but his work will be his legacy in that many children across the valley have access to computers they could not otherwise have had.  

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Christmas Celebrations Los Llanos del Peral Village Church

Dates for your diary to start your Christmas celebrations.

At the Anglican Church Llanos del Peral there are two lovely Christmas services for the community to enjoy.

Sunday December 3rd at 11.00AM we have a traditional Crib Service. Local children will place the much loved nativity figures in the stable as favourite Christmas carols are enjoyed together. A family occasion for all to enjoy in the traditional way.

Tuesday 12th December at 6.00PM our Carols by Candlelight Service with mulled wine and minced pies to share afterwards. 

This is always a popular event so please come early to be sure of a seat.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

English Cinema in Albox

I have been asked by the organisers of the Cinema in Albox which shows the latest movies in english. The cinema is in the Albox Town Hall in the Frederica Garcia Lorca Room.

Admission is €5.50 and in the next few weeks they have the following films

Monday 27th November at 1900 The Bookshop starring Bill Nighy and Emily Mortimer.

Monday December 4th 1800 Disney and Pixars Coco.

Monday December 11th 1900 Murder on the Orient Express

For more details or to check in future visit the Facebook page at

Monday, November 20, 2017

Christmas Fair and NHW AGM

Two events coming up this week.

On Sunday 26th November in the Renfe in La Alfoquia from 12 noon until 3.0pm there is to be a Christmas Fair in aid of the charity ACRAA with all monies raised going to the Walk for Life Charity in Arboleas. There will be a variety of craft stalls, festive themed food stalls with freshly made pies cakes pastries etc. Hot and cold refreshments will be available. Entrance will be 1 euro in return for which you will be given a raffle ticket to wine a case of wine!

Secondly on Tuesday 28th November at 6.0pm in Bar Cielos (near the pool bar in La Alfoquia) will be held the Annual General Meeting of Zurgena Neighbourhood Watch Scheme. This is the only legally required meeting for the scheme to continue. If you have time pop along and show your support for the people who keep the scheme alive. 

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

IBI Reminder, Tapas Route, Christmas Fair and NHW AGM

Final Reminder for your 2017 IBI bills. They need to be paid before the 20th November otherwise they will start to attract penalties. If you have not received yours please check with the Town Hall as (from previous experience) I have learned that it is the homeowners responsibility to check.

The Tapas route, following last years successful event, is being held over the next two weekends. Friday Saturday and Sunday 17, 18, 19 and 24, 25, 26 November. A list of the bars taking part is shown below. When you visit any of the bars collect one of the route cards. Have each bar you visit stamp the card and at the conclusion of the event there will be a draw. The first 3 drawn out of the hat will win prizes which include a weekend away and a meal for two.

Parque Bar in Zurgena
Bar Fragua just up from Parque Bar in Zurgena
Pepe´s Bar in the square Zurgena
Kalevala, Los Carasoles
Bar La Vida, Cucador Norte
Union Bar, Main Road La Alfoquia
Catalan Bar on the corner below the square where the Argentinian Cafe  is.
Pool Bar La Alfoquia

The charity ACRAA are to hold their Christmas Fair in the Renfe Sunday 26th November from 12 noon until 3.0pm with all money raised going to Walk for Life Arboleas. Admission is €1 but for that you receive a raffle ticket with a chance to win a case of wine! There will be a variety of craft, gift and food stalls. And Santa will be there!

Lastly the Annual General Meeting of the Zurgena Neighbourhood Watch is to be held in Bar Cielos (near the Swimming Pool in La Alfoquia)  at 6.0pm Tuesday 28th November. It will be a short meeting but we hope to see some support. 

Friday, November 10, 2017

Remembrance Day Service

Just to confirm for anyone, who may be unsure, this years Remembrance Day Service is to be held in the Renfe at 1030am tomorrow Saturday the 11th.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Cookery and Memory Courses and Theatre Show

Those of you who attended the Culinary/Cultural course last month will be aware that the presenter intimated that we could hold cookery and memory courses if there was sufficient interest.

The Town Hall is happy to support and encourage these courses and we would probably look to hold them in the early part of 2018.

If you are interested in either of these subjects please let me know and once we have assessed the interest we can organise the dates etc.

The local group Almanzora Charitable Theatre are once again bringing live theatre to our doorstep.  This time it is a suspense thriller entitled "House Guest" and performances are tonight (Friday 10th) at 7.30pm, with a matinee on Sunday 12th at 3.00pm.  Tickets on the door at €7.50.  After premiering this in Albox last week one enthralled attendee is quoted as saying that it was so good they were planning to see it again!  Praise indeed!  Let's try to support this group who, with each performance, raise funds for charities within our Almanzora Valley.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Ruta de Tapas

Following the success of last years event the Town Hall of Zurgena has organised another Ruta de Tapas for this year.

The event will be held at various of our local bars over the weekends of Friday 17th Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th November and again over the following weekend 24th, 25th and 26th.

The bars taking part will stamp your card when you visit and partake of the special tapa. The cost will be €2 for a drink and a tapa. The cards will hopefully be available next week and the same competition held. The draw for the winner will be held after the competition when all completed cards will go into a barrel and the winners ticket being the first drawn. 

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Calasparra Trip Agenda and Update






including Saint Peters Church, Farmers House, archeological and rice museums and the Clock Tower

1200 DEPARTURE TO OUR LADY`S SANCTUARY OF HOPE with a stop at Las Lomas look out point which overlooks the rice fields of Calasparra.


1400 LUNCH Menu includes entremeses, mixed salad, paella with rabbit, chicken, prawns, peppers and peas, house dessert. Bread, wine water or beer.



Price €22 per person. Limited spaces. To reserve pay at the Town Hall to either Jim Simpson or Lola Antas.

Update this trip is proving to be very popular . As soon as all the seats have been paid for the coach will be full. So please pay asap

Monday, November 6, 2017

IBI, Fires, Trip and PGOU

Firstly a reminder that if you have not yet received your IBI bill you call into the Town Hall and ask for a copy. The Diputacion engaged a third party company to deliver the bills this year and, from what I have seen, they did not do a very good job. The bills are due to be paid by the 20th November and if they are not paid then they start to attract financial penalties.

Due to the exceptionally dry and warm year the ban on fires in the countryside (including BBQs) has been extended probably only another week or two but I will try and announce when it is lifted.

The next Town Hall trip will be to Calasparra on Saturday 2nd December and will cost €22. Reservations for this trip can be made by paying the cost to the Town Hall either to myself or one of the clerks. I have not yet got the definitive agenda but will publish when available.

We had a couple of very lengthy meetings regarding the PGOU last week and following that further meetings are being held between ourselves and Paco Torres today or tomorrow. There will then be a Commission of Urbanisation meeting held and after that a Pleno meeting. After that process we should be able to make an announcement.

Update. Following discussions with the architects and the Junta no further announcements will be made until the New Year regarding the PGOU.  This is due to a few points which are still being negotiated and it was felt better to have a more complete status to report. I am however very optimistic.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

New Supermarket

We are to have a new supermarket in La Alfoquia opening this Friday. Being inaugurated tomorrow Thursday from 6.0pm to 8.0pm then open to the public from Friday.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Mediterranean Diet (with health benefit lists) & Adra Town Hall Trip

Firstly following the very successful Culinary Day last week. I have finished the translation of the presentation on the Mediterranean Diet and all its health benefits. As so many had asked for this. The main pages relevant to those bits of the presentation are after page 14.
Follow the below link to obtain a copy.

Yesterday was another of our cultural day trips and this time visiting Adra. I had a lot of feedback regarding how interesting people found the history of this little known town. We visited many of the towns interesting places and were accompanied throughout by a well versed guide who knew the history in depth.
Have added a few of the many photographs that were taken during the day.
Our next Cultural Trip looks as if it will be the 2nd December just awaiting confirmation from Calasparra Town Hall and will post once it is confirmed.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Found Dog

Update Micro chip read and dog returned to his Moroccan owner in Cucador.

Has anyone lost this dog it has turned up at the home of a Spanish family in Barrio de Chicago No 24.
Their telephone number is  627782888.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Padron Importance and Bins.

I have only recently been made aware of the fact of how important it is to ensure ones´ Padron is kept registered. The process which works as follows is not a failsafe process. Every so often the Town Hall has a generated report asking for us to confirm that a list of persons should still be on the Padron. This is done to ensure that the TH is not claiming for persons who should not be counted for the benefits the TH receives. In the past this task has been passed to myself or another member of staff, however, the problem has often arisen when we have been unable to contact the individual. They may have change phone numbers or contact details and we are then unable to get them in to confirm that they should still be on the Padron. Until recently I thought that such cases remained on for a few more years but it now transpires that they do not and drop of the register.

Again I was unaware of the importance of this until we recently became involved in trying to arrange assistance for elderly residents who needed such help and the first question Social Services asked was for confirmation that the individual was on the patron and had been consecutively on it for the previous 5 years. I realise now that many people would not know whether they were or were not on the Padron and my advice would be (as I intend to do it myself) is to set a date once a year and call in and ask for a Certificado de Empadronimiento that would then ensure that your record was active.

Basuras (rubbish bins) It would appear that some of our newer residents are unaware of their responsibilities regarding rubbish. Firstly if you have a recycling bins please use them for the purposes shown. Secondly if you have any large items or items that you feel could be recycled you can place them by the bins just prior to the 12th and 27th of each month as that is when the Consorcio remove such things. Any large scale garden refuse etc can be disposed off at the centre in Arbloeas their Facebook page is

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

5th Culinary/Culture Day at the Renfe 25.10

Another great event today in the Renfe. We had presentations firstly of all the health benefits of all foods and plants available in the Mediterranean diet. Very interesting.

There then followed a whole host of recipes with explanations of their history or historical connection to our residents both Spanish and 10 other different countries. Then of course the best bit of the day enjoying all these home made dishes. Blooming gorgeous!

All topped off with a wee dram of single malt whisky and a piece of shortbread mm.

Thanks to all who prepared and participated in making the day a great experience.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017


Sorry for the delay but we have at last finalised the agenda for our culinary day next Wednesday 25th October in the Renfe.

1030 Opening by the Mayor Luis David Garcia
1045 Presentation of the benefits of a healthy mediterranean diet
1100 Breakfast.
1130 Presentation of recipes and preparation of dishes.
1330 The best bit eating and drinking of the dishes supplemented by others.

The Town Hall of Zurgena is particularly grateful to the following for providing their time and foodstuffs to prepare their homeland dishes.

Fernanda Gasseling and Petra van Wijnen preparing Hutspot met Gehakbal, Traditional Dutch dish

Mahin Chevers is preparing a traditional Persian Stew.

Andree de Jong is preparing a typical Indonesian Satay dish possibly with curried eggs.

Reni Majid from Islamabad is preparing a traditional Pakistani curry.

Beryl Booth is bringing chicken drumsticks and a cheesecake.

Spanish Dishes yet to be announced. But will include a dish from Palaces.

It is needed for logistics for us to know how many are attending so please call me 610194260 or drop me an email with numbers before Sunday 22nd . We are probably restricted to about 40 persons.

Also if you wish to wash down the dishes with alcohol please bring your own wine or beer. Soft drinks will be available free of charge. Everyone is welcome to bring any other food they think would be enjoyed but the first 4 above will do short presentations on their dishes.

These days have been very successful in the past year or two and I hope this will follow the same and is a great opportunity to mix culturally and food wise with our Spanish and other nationality neighbours. 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Bird Scarer Quietened

We have finally managed to identify and cause the noisy bird scarer located between CATS and the Pool Bar area to be silenced. We have finally ascertained that no one in the municipality of Zurgena has a license for such a machine and the person using has been advised that he will be subject to fines should he use it in the future.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Adra Trip Full & Food Day

The Town Hall trip to Adra is now full.

The next event is the Culinary/Cultural Day on Wednesday 25th October and I have been contacted by a few people who will present their dishes on the day (including some more exotic places from where our residents originate). I expect it to be another successful day. As usual if anyone wishes to attend and join in the food and drink it would be appreciated if they would bring along some beer or wine.

I will circulate more details when we have finalised the agenda but I do need to know numbers so we can ensure sufficient food for everyone. So if you would like to come along and join us please let me know.

Those who have agreed to present a dish please let me have a photograph of what it looks like and its description for the publicity.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Post Boxes Cucador Norte & PGOU meeting & BBQs in the country

I have lost my list of persons who would like one of the post boxes serving Cucador Norte, below Bar La Vida and I now have two available.

If you have previously asked for one please let me know.

We are still waiting for further clarification regarding a few points from our technical architect, who is involved with the negotiations, before the Mayor can decide when to call the meeting.

The ban on barbecues and agricultural burns throughout Andalusia, as well as the passage of motor vehicles through forest areas and areas of forest influence in the community - 400 meters around forest areas - was to end on Sunday, October, but the Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning has extended this ban until the end of this month.

The measure, confirmed by ALMERÍA TODAY, has been taken after being requested by the Infoca's own firefighters, as well as by political groups like Equo, due to the exceptional weather conditions that we have been suffering, especially with the drought that plagues the country. The high temperatures and the scarcity of precipitations cause that the water stress of the vegetation is now greater than at the beginning of summer 

In the province of Almería, especially sensitive are recreational areas like the stream of Celín (Dalías), the area of ​​La Piza (Maria) or the most eastern part of the Almerian Alpujarra -Alcolea, Laujar de Andarax, Bayárcal, Paterna del Río-.

From 1 January to 8 October, Infoca has carried out a total of 813 forest interventions on Andalusian soil, 79% were cones, ie less than one hectare of burned land, and the rest are fires. In addition, the Infoca has acted in another 211 claims, 167 in agricultural land and 44 urban fires. Therefore, more than a thousand interventions in Andalusia so far this year.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Water Off Galasa Update 1815 11.10

Just been informed by Galasa that they are to cut off the water supply for most of the areas the village for between 4 and 5 hours due to the work needed on a major pipe fracture. Timed at 1215pm 10th October.

They are now saying that the works is more complicated than first thought and it may be 12 noon tomorrow or even 5.0pm before the water is reconnected.

I have just spoken with the Mayor who was called by Galasa short time ago to say the repair was completed and the water supply should be back to normal as soon as all pumps are fully primed about 1 hour

Saturday, October 7, 2017

IBI Records Update

I have received a few enquiries from people about their properties being photographed either by a drone or by a man with an iPad going street to street.
It is actually a person working for the Diputacion de Almerias´ Catastral Office. They are updating their records and checking that the property records they have are accurate as to what actually exists in reality.  Normally, of course, the Town Hall forward details of any licences for any extension to a property which may mean an increases in the size or the outbuildings on a property. But as the Town Hall have been prohibited from issuing such licences they are trying to update their records by their own means. I imagine that next years bills will reflect any new extensions, pools, garages etc which people may have added to their property without licences, that they have discovered.

Adra Trip

The first of zurgena Town Halls autumn cultural trip has been finalised and is a visit to the town of Adra. The poster below gives details of the itinerary for the day 30th October and the cost (including all guides, translator and lunch) is €13!!

Registration is required with payment prior to the 25th October and is first come first served.
Sorry for some reason cannot enlarge text in pic so it is as below.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Cultural/Culinary Day & Likely Trip Dates (Amendment 9th Oct)

Below is a translation of the circulation to the Spanish community which is also posted on here for other nationalities.

Volunteers are needed to present a recipe, photos of prep and, if appropriate, a history of the dish (preferably from their home country) which can be prepared for the audience to taste during the event.

The event is to be called Second Culinary/Culture Event by Senior Citizens on 25th October in the Renfe at La Alfoquia.

All interested in participating can register either at the Town Hall with Jim Simpson or at the Guadalinfo office in La Alfoquia. Applications will be accepted until the 20th November.

I am asking that all persons who wish to attend the event to register with me to ensure we can accommodate the numbers and have sufficient food /drink.

On this occasion it will be a case of only those registered may attend. So let me know prior to the 20th if you intend going.

The planned trips now look likely to be held on the following  dates

Adra 30th October

Calasparra 2nd December.

Just need to confirm prices and times and will post again.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Kaths Walks, Gym and Future

Just to remind people that Kath Gaskell has recommenced her weekly walks. They leave from the Pool Bar in La Alfoquia at 10.0am each Wednesday morning.

We have a meeting with a person interested in running the Gymnasium in La Alfoquia this Thursday and hope we can reach an agreement to have it reopened and also to allow June to start her Zumba classes there again.

In addition to the Calasparra trip (in November) we are planning one to Adra which may be arranged for the week commencing 30th October but details of both will be confirmed as soon as agreed.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Road Repairs

At last I can report that the final contracts for the road repairs, which were included in the Provincial Plan for this year, have now been signed (last Tuesday to be exact).

The works should commence on or about the 14th October. This should include Calle Finlandia, Escocia and Dinamarca.

I will try and ensure that if there are any road closures we are made aware of them prior to them taking place!!

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Culinary/Culture Day & Details of a Piki Trip

Following the success of these days earlier this year and last year we are proposing organising another next month. We are looking at Wednesday 25th October.

Those of you who attended at previous events will know the format. What we do is have a few Spanish and from other countries who present a dish from their home country. They do a short verbal presentation about their dish and show how they prepare it (a few pictures showing the process) and afterwards we all sit down to enjoy the food prepared, together with wine and/or beer whatever people bring.

So I am asking that anyone who wishes to volunteer to do a dish at this event to contact me with their idea and what quantity of the dish they would be able to bring to the day. I do hope we can make it as successful as the previous ones. To give you some idea at the last one I prepared Haggis and I explained where and how we catch the wild haggis and how we prepare it for eating!

I will also need numbers for those who wish to attend. So on this occasion we will be registering people who wish to attend. Just let me have your names and telephone number if you wish to attend.

We are also looking at our next trip which will probably be to Calasparra around the 11th November but not confirmed yet. I will post once agreed.

Piki Autobuses, who we use for our Town Hall trips, has details of a trip they are doing in December to the world famous Catholic Pilgrimage Site at Fatima in Portugal. The trip is of 5 days duration pick up locally and the price includes Full Board (inc wine bread and water with each meal) at a hotel in Fatima, entrances to the monasteries and grottos and all transport for a price of €330 per person but with an individual supplement of €130. If anyone is interested I have the full itinerary and details.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Pleno and PGOU Meeting

Tonight we held an ordinary Pleno session meeting of the council.

Amongst other items discussed was the agreement to allow 5% discount on IBI bills when paid by direct debit however, due to paperwork and rules it cannily commence after the 1st December. So no good for this year.

One point I discussed with theMayor was when he could give all the people an update regarding the PGOU and we are looking at organising one in the next fortnight. In order that we can ensure accommodation for all I need to estimate the numbers who may attend.I toldLuis that I thought it would be in excess of 100 persons but in order to confirm this (so we can decide whether to do 1 or 2 meetings can you let me know if you would be attending this meeting. That way we can more accurately calculate what we need.  

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

IBI Bill issues & Church Donations

I have been made aware of an issue with the delivery of the bills for this years IBI.

It would appear that the Diputacion have engaged a company to deliver these bills but that they are not showing much efficiency in doing so. It appears that on occasions they have merely placed all the bills on top of post boxes!

My advice to you all is if you have not yet received your 2017/18 IBI bill yet you call into the Town Hall and ask Andreas to check the system. He has the ability to print off your bills.

The final date for payment of these bills is in early November.

Again we have to thank the congregation of the Church in Los Llanos del Peral for their generous gift of parcels for the less fortunate following their Harvest Festival. These are currently being distributed to local families who will benefit from them. 

Monday, September 25, 2017

Back in the Saddle

Well folks after a lovely long holiday including a road trip round Colorado and visiting family I am back in the saddle.

I apologise for the absence but I needed it!

If you have an issue or issues still outstanding which you think I may be able to help with please contact me at the usual email address.

I will be updating the blog later this week with any events and plans from the Town Hall which I hope will include a meeting about the PGOU which I am getting extremely concerned about the lack of news of. 

Friday, August 25, 2017

Hooray Holidays

Just to inform you that I shall be on holiday from Sunday 27th August until Sunday 24th September.

It does mean I will miss the Zurgena Fiesta!

During my absence I will monitor my emails etc but please bear in mind there may be some delay in responding.

For any matters that require more immediate response or attention please contact Andreas on the help desk or Jose Manuel on his mobile 687531499 (although he will not be in the office he has agreed to provide a telephone service during this period).

I have provided the other councillors with a list of the matters which have been reported to me as outstanding and I have given them the details of the people who need to know any results.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Presentation to June for Aqua Aerobics

Today, on behalf of the people who have been enjoying the Aqua Aerobics, I made a presentation to June Hamilton.

June ran the Aqua Aerobics last year as a self employed individual and was able to charge a small fee for doing so, however, this year due to the complications of being set employed, she was no longer self employed and therefore the Town Hall could no longer allow her to hold her aqua classes.

After discussion the Town Hall discovered that as long as she did not charge any entrance fee she could still  have the aqua classes. June, being June, was quite happy to do that as she said at the time she does not do it for the money but for the pleasure of helping people stay fit and active. Otherwise there would have been no Aqua this year.

Last year she averaged 15 to 20 persons per class but the year it was 40 to 60!!

The attendees so enjoyed the classes that they held a collection for her and it was this, that I was honoured to present to June.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Spanish Classes

Manolo will be restarting the Spanish classes in the 3rd Age room below the Municipal Library in Zurgena from the 4th September.

He will be there in the afternoons from about 4.0pm until 6.0pm but you can also contact him on or after that date on his phone 651 090 728. But registration will take place from 1100am that same day.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Zurgena Fiesta Programme

Please find below the programme for the Fiesta de San Ramon Nonnato between the 26th August and 3rd September 2017.

Saturday 26th August
1730 Basketball in the street
2200 Kalafa Rock band Plaza del Olmo

Sunday 27th August
0900 Petanque tournament

Monday 28th until Thursday 31st
Dominoes Tournament

Tuesday 29th to Sunday 3rd September
2000 x 2230 in the Municipal library Photographic Exhibition entitled "Spaces"

Tuesday 29th August
1700 Sports School Football 7s.

Wednesday 30th to Thursday 31st August
1700 Football 7s for adults.

Wednesday 30th August
Day of the Children
2000 Veterans Football 7s.
0000 Fireworks to signal the start of the fiesta.

Thursday 31st August
0930 Free Chocolate and churros for the 3rd Age
1300 Half Day Fair with municipal bars open.
1900 Celebration of our Patron Saint San Ramon Nonnatto with procession.
0000 Music from Orchestra Kaos 57, Gira Albert Tours and a duet.
0030 Gala crowning the Queen of the Fiesta and the elction of the Infant and juvenile queen, Miss Simpatica, Miss Tourism and Mister 2017.

Friday 1st September
1100 x 1300 Water Games in the Plaza Cinco Martires.
1300 Half day Fair with municipal bars.
1700 Water Slide in Calle Victoriano Lucas.
0000 Music from Orchestra Pentagrama and a duet.

Saturday 2nd September
1300 Half day Fair with municipal bars.
1700 Table Tennis tournament in the floor below the municipal library.
1700 Childrens Run in Parque Gines Parra.
1900 Horse run in the rambla of Rio Almanzora.
0000 Music from Orchestra Pentagrama and the duet.

Sunday 3rd September
1300 Half day Fair with municipal bars.
1800 Foam party in the sports area next to the rambla.
1930 Dog Show with dogs exhibiting skills such as substance searching etc.
0000 Music with the group Brisa.
0100 Fireworks at the castle to signal end of the fiesta.

Felice fiestas!

Friday, August 18, 2017

For all you Rockers out there

The Town Hall has organised a rock concert for Saturday 26th August as part of the Zurgena Fiesta weeks activities. Admission is free and it starts in the Plaza del Olmo at 2200.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Trip and Walk

Firstly there is a trip to the Balneario (spa baths) in Archena on Thursday 14th September.

The price for the coach, food and entrance to the Spa Baths is €25 and registration is required in the Town Hall prior to the 7th September.

Ignore the entry for the walk that was on here the date was totally wrong. My apologies for any inconvenience.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

National Holiday Tuesday 15th

Just tomato you all aware that the Assumption of Mary National Holiday will be held on Tuesday 15th August. As this is a national holiday it is a bank holiday.

We are however pleased to say that the Municipal Pool will be open that day for the usual activities including the Aqua Aerobics.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Annual Integration Fiesta and Blocked Drains

I thought it worthwhile to post on here the telephone number for reporting blocked drains as we have had a few of these lately. In the first place if the blockage is between your property and its connection to the main drain then the responsibility and cost falls on the homeowner. If it beyond that point it is the responsibility of Galasa. 
Galasa have a 24 hour telephone number for reporting such blockages and it is 950 916 738. 
Two companies who provide the drain cleaning service that I know of are Sepserve 675 838 808 and Blocked Drains r us 950 091 109 or 648 768 587 both have english speaking receptionists. I am not making recommendations merely putting the numbers out.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Rubbish Reminder

Just a simple reminder to people to please be thoughtful about disposing of your waste. The basura system here, I think, is very good and people should help suppport it by ensuring the correct waste is put in the correct bins and not leave general rubbish at the side of the bin attracting vermin etc.

Remember there are two days a month when the Consorciuo will collect larger items which can be left at the side of the basuras and that is the 12th and 27th. So if you have any larger item please place it by the basura the previous evening for collection.  

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Zurgena Fiesta

Now that La Alfoquia´s fiesta is over we are preparing for the Fiesta for Zurgena which is over the week ended 3rd September.

In preparation for this fiesta we will include any and all social events which are being organised by the expat communities.

So two things, firstly if you have any events (social or sport) during this week please let me know for inclusion in the programme and secondly if you are a proprietor of a business and wish to have an advert in the Fiesta magazine please also contact me.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Temporary Suspension of Free Doctors Interpreters Service & IBI Discounts

Unfortunately, and due to anti corruption legislation, we have to suspend the free doctors interpreters Service for a couple of months. This is to allow the bidding process for the contract to be completed.

We anticipate the service will be restarted in October but I will post on here once the new contracts are agreed.

Regarding the process for receiving a discount on IBI when paying by direct debit, we have now passed this in Pleno. For the process to be applied to your individual IBI accounts it is necessary to complete a solicitude in the Town Hall. The paperwork for this will be available from 1st October until the 31st December but can only apply from the next financial year. No matter what your current payment method is if you wish to avail yourself of the discount you will need to call in to the Town Hall to complete the form between early October and 31st December and it will apply to the following years.

The process for using CATS for your doctors appointments continues. It is just that you will be required to pay them for the services of the interpreter.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Dogs Fines

For information the Polizia Local have issued a total of 6 fines, in the past few weeks, to dog owners for allowing their dogs on the public ways without a lead. 

Charity Walk in Cantoria

On Saturday the 29th July there is an organised walk in aid of Association Duchenne Parent Project which is raising funds to help tackle Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

There is a timed run with microchips for runners. This run is for anyone over 16 years and is of 8.5kms and starts at 8.0pm. Registration for this event (ONLY) online at www.

There is also a walk (for those non competitive types!) over 8.8kms on the Route Peñon del Lugar Viejo which starts at 7.0pm from the Plaza de la Constitucion in Cantoria. Entrance for all events is €10. This includes a backpack, shirt and sweatband. To register for the walk go to a branch of Unicaja and pay your €10 into the  account Unicaja ES02 2103 5270 65 0030005139 against your name and event.

There is also a timed run with microchips for runners. This run is for anyone over 16 years and is of 8.5kms and starts at 8.0pm. Registration for this event (ONLY) online at

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Work Offer & Johnson

A friend of mine is looking to find a temporary replacement for her at her place of work due to maternity leave for a period of 4 month which could be extendable.

The work is in an Estate Agents office and is for 20 to 30 hours per week. It involves admin work in the office. The work entails writing contracts, checking paperwork, organising signing at Notary offices etc. Must have sufficient Spanish to have basic conversations.

If you or anyone you know is interested just email me or call.

Does anyone know of contact details for a Dennis Roy Johnson or his wife Amanda Gillian Johnson. This couple are the owners of 1, Calle Finlandia and we need to contact them. We have no contact details in the Town Hall and it would be in their interests to make contact. If you know of this couple or anyone else who may know them please pass the message on.

New Roundabout

I have had many people question me as to what the new roundabout is going to look like. Questions such as is it an advert for a new MacDonalds? is it going to have a fountain? etc.

The plan for the roundabout is to replicate one of the double arch railway bridges in the area.

We are still looking for something to erect on the top. Originally it was hoped we could get some old railway machinery but the prices for such were astronomical €30,000 for one so we are still looking at other options. One suggestion below!!!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Complaints regarding Electricity Cuts

I am grateful to Ron Tims for the below response (from Fenie Energy) regarding a complaint about electricity supply cuts. Interesting

In relation to your previous e-mail, we inform you that we are only responsible for billing you, the company that is in charge of the electric network in the area is your distributor (ENDESA DISTRIBUCIÓN).

If there is a scheduled cut, they usually warn you through posters on the street or in your building.

If a breakdown occurs, it is not possible to notify customers so that they have to wait until it is resolved.

In any case we recommend that when you do not have electricity, always call 900.215.470.

Then, we send you the ways to complain:

1- Claim through your insurance. We will send you a breakdown locator code (data provided by your distributor company) to identify the incident date / time and then compensate for it.

2- Claim directly to your zone distributor. In this case, we will send you a document to fill in all the damage data and the damage produced. Once it is returned we will process the complaint. This process is the slowest since the distributor could take months to give us an answer.

Finally, we inform you that if it was a scheduled cut, the distributor could qualify the claim as improper as it has been warned by posters in the area or in the local press.

Albox Recycling Centre

This was posted on Facebook today and is of interest to many of you who have been asking about where and how you can get rid of stuff.

Lamps, wood, sofas, remains of work, oils, batteries all kinds of bulky goods, computer equipment ... We remind you that very close to the fire station all the neighbours have at their disposal the clean point of Albox with free delivery. For our health and cleanliness of Albox, do not deposit these products in another place other than the clean point. All kinds of information call Miguel 649 902 502

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

La Alfoquia Fiesta Programme

Sorry I thought I had already posted this.

Wednesday 12th July Exhibition in the Renfe until Sunday 16th 8.30pm until 11.0pm
                                   1800 Bowling Tournament
                                    1900 Football 7 tournament daily until 16th July
                                   2100 Music Renfe from 2100 with Charlie and others
                                    All day Childrens Day
Thursday 13th July     0000 Fireworks
                                    2200 Flamenco by Ria Pita
                                     2300 Music by Cuarteto Tucan
                                     2359 Election of Infant and Youth Queen. (Mister fiesta Miss Simpatia y
                                      Mr Turismo)
Friday 14th July           1130 Workshop in the Renfe
                                      Free entrance to the municipal swimming pool in the afternoon.
                                      1700 Games in the swimming pool
                                      2300 Popular Orchestra music Renfe from Maximus Show
Saturday 15th July        0930 Free Churros for 3rd Age
                                      1600 Table Tennis Tournament Renfe
                                      1900 Foam Party in the Sports area.
                                       2300 Music from Orchestra Carousel Show and Duo Musical a Contraluz
Sunday 16th July           2030 Celebration of the Saint in honour of La Virgen del Carmen
                                       2100 Solemn Procession accompanied by the village band.
                                       2300 Music from Kaos 57

Felice Fiestas.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017


As most of you who have lived here for any length of time will know we are reaching that period of limited bureaucratic activity.

We are still working hard on things like projects and the PGOU but the administrative staff will be taking holidays over the next few weeks and this week of course is the La Alfoquia Fiesta so the Town Hall will be closed on Monday 17th (sorry just changed that from Friday my mistake). The Town Hall will not be closed for any extended time during the summer but there will be very limited staff.

Jose Manuel will not be in the office very much either as he is taking time off.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Aqua Aerobics and Walking Football

Just a few pics of todays first Aqua aerobics class (of the summer) and walking football.

Ian and June run both these classes voluntarily both are on Tuesdays and Thursdays 1000 x1045 at the municipal pool and adjacent pitch. Any enquiries to me or to Ian or June on 634320636.

Provincial Plan Works

Many of you I know are awaiting (and have been for a few years now!) the work to repair the roads Calle Finlandia, Calle Escocia, Calle Dinamarca and Calle Irlanda amongst other.

These works were agreed to be financed by the Diputacion within the Provincial Plan for 2017. I have been constantly pushing for this work to get going. The contracts were put out to tender in the first 3 month of this year and the winning bids have now, I understand, been accepted by the Diputacion and the work should start in September. Will keep my fingers crossed and also keep pressuring to get them started.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Spanish Lessons for September start

For those interested in registering for the Spanish lessons (held in the room by the library) for the coming year, registration will take place at this location from 1100 on the 4th September.

The identity of the tutor will not be known until nearer the day.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Aqua Aerobics and Walking Football

Final definitive arrangements for the above;

June will be doing her aqua aerobics at the municipal swimming pool from 1000 x 1045 each Tuesday and Thursday from next Tuesday the 4th July and the classes will be free. They will continue throughout the summer. Only restriction will be numbers.

Ian Hamiltons´ walking football will be on the same days and times but will have to start charging €2 pre person to use the artificial pitch. Apparently some have complained that other groups have to pay and it is only fair that all do.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Pleno and Walking Football

This evening at 8.0pm we had our 3 monthly Plenary session of the council. The attendance was rather disappointing with all the administering councillors in attendance but not one of the opposition councillors!

Our mayor recorded his disappointment in the recording of the meeting. The upside was that, with no opposition present, the meeting was over in a little over 35 minutes! I think a record in the past 10 years.

We passed a total of 6 items and these included the IBI discount (once formalised will post details)  and approval for a new petrol station.

Iam Hamilton who takes the walking football on Tuesday morning is starting to also have a Thursday morning session (due to the popularity) and tomorrow will be his first Thursday one starting at 1000 hours.

Stray Dogs and Cats

It seems that problems with animals pose more of an issue across the world than almost anything else!

40 years ago as a uniform sergeant I had to represent the Police and the Council of Wakefield at an annual meeting at which residents were encouraged to raise their community issues and concerns, such as crime, antisocial behaviour etc. Rather surprisingly to me the issues raised were all about dogs and cats! Now here I am 40 years later and guess what - same things.

Over the past 2 weeks we have received a number of complaints particularly about stray dogs in 3 separate areas. It would appear that in some cases individuals are feeding these dogs which of course encourages them to stay in the area they are being fed in, which is residential. This can and does seem to give rise to complaints.

The process for the Town Hall is that when we receive a complaint we send the Police to try and check if the animals are microchipped (which is why we bought them a microchip reader) in which case the owner can be traced and made responsible. If the dog is not chipped then the Police can seize it or we can call in the pound staff to seize it. Of course this can be expensive for such a small town as if they cannot find or catch the dog we still get charged. On the last 3 occasions we have despatched the Police to check stray dogs twice they have been unable to check if microchipped and only once managed to seize 2 alsatians.

May we ask that people desist from feeding stray dogs in residential areas please.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Photos of the Legion Safety Exercise Day

I have today received a selection of photographs released by the Legion of our safety day exercise last month.