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It was announced earlier this week by the President of the Tenerife Cabildo, Ricardo Melchior that there are plans for two new direct flights between Tenerife and Senegal and Tenerife and the Cape Verde Islands.

Yesterday the President announced there are also plans in the pipeline, which are expected to be announced next weeks, for a direct air link from Tenerife to Miami.

Once the flights are running there will no longer be a need for Tenerife residents to travel to any of the three destinations via Madrid or London.

The Canarian Health Service telephone appointments system failed yet again yesterday (22nd April) causing chaos.

Callers to the CHS number (012) were unable to get through to book an appointment with their GP or with a specialist.

The crash affected the entire system and was caused by a computer failure, which also prevented medical staff from consulting patient records ahead of the day’s appointments.

Tenerife was worst hit by the server breakdown, although scores of health centres in Gran Canaria were also badly affected.

The Health Service said that a back-up system had partially remedied the problem but disruption was inevitable.

Environmental lobby group Ben Magec complained that there was no access for cars to the beach at Abama Hotel complex. There is no turning point and no parking, which makes it out of bounds to the public.

On investigating the complaint, The department of Coastas decided there is public access to the beach because the Abama Hotel lays on a shuttle bus to ferry people to and from the beach.

A spokesman for the Department of Coasts said all beaches in Spain are public beaches and Abama is no exception.

He also said there was even a large sign pointing out the road, which gives public access, and if any people were denied access, they should complain formally.

The Canarian Department of Tourism has announced that tourism has increased by more than five per cent this quarter, compared to the same period last year, and declares the Canaries top Spanish tourist destination with 2.7 million foreign visitors.

Together, in March, the islands hosted over 1 million foreign visitors, which is a 3.8% increase on March 2007

The minister for Tourism, Rita Martín, is delighted with the first quarter’s results but emphasised the importance of continuous improvements of products and infrastructure available in the Canary Islands.

The islands saw an 80% increase in visitors from Poland in March, followed by the Swiss, 50% up and Austrians, up almost 20%.

Figure announced by The Canarian Department of Tourism

Tenerife, 370,180 tourists in March. 2,638 more than 2007
Gran Canaria had 306,924 visitors in March, up by 21,709 on last year.
Lanzarote had 169,065 over the same period, 5% more than 2007.
In Fuerteventura there was an increase of almost 3%, 142,042 people,
La Palma 14,596 visitors in March, up a disappointing 0.5% on 2007.

Sector leaders have warned, however, that the bumper figures should be treated with caution given that they are not comparable to previous years because Easter fell unusually early this year.

Price falls of between 2% and 6% have been seen, especially in the South.

Value It, the Santa Ursula based publisher of The Tenerife Property Price Guide, today releases the results of its survey of Tenerife property prices, showing falls in prices for the three regions of Tenerife, (the South and South East, the North, and the Metropolitan region).

During the last six months, property prices have fallen by 3,48% in the South and South East (from Candelaria around the coast to Santiago del Teide). In the North, prices have fallen the least, by 2,64%, and in the Metropolitan region (Santa Cruz, La Laguna, El Rosario and Tegueste) prices have fallen by 3,27%. When general inflation is taken into account (2,1% over the last six months) the real falls are 5.6% in the South, 4,7% in the North and 5,4% in the Metropolitan region.

John Gardner of Value It commented: “These are averages for these regions, and are based upon a survey of 6250 properties for sale. Within each region there have been greater falls in some areas and for certain property types, and a few areas are level with inflation or still seeing prices rise.

Puerto de la Cruz has seen falls below the average for example, while the falls in Adeje are consistent with the southern region as a whole. The answer for people looking to buy in Tenerife is thorough research and knowing the pricing trends in the areas and for the property types. There is no substitute if you want to buy well and protect your investment. For those thinking of selling they can work out what would be a good or competitive price to ensure that they attract serious buyers”.

Details have been released by the Government to honour an election promise which gives a €400 tax rebate to every tax payer in Spain.

The plan will give a financial boost to families struggling with higher mortgage payments as well as the ever increasing cost of living.

Tax payers, pensioners and employees, will pay €200 less in July and over the following 6 months will receive the remaining €200 in monthly payments.

People who do not earn enough to pay tax will receive the sum as a credit.

Self employed people will receive the rebate over 3 instalments. A €200 reduction in their retentions in July, plus 2 €100 payments, one in October the second in December.

Santa Cruz square – reopening delayed yet again

Posted by dolly diver on April 24, 2008
Posted in News about Tenerife  | Tagged With: , ,

Once again construction work on the new main square in Santa Cruz has been delayed.

The local Cabildo admitted that the deadline of 30th April has had to be put back yet again, after more delays in the completion of the project.

The Cabildo, back in February, announced that the renovation of the Plaza de España would be finished by 17 March, although it immediately rectified and changed the date to 30 April.

It now looks as if the square, which has a giant lake in the middle, will not be opened to the public until late June or early July.

The corporation has also admitted a cost overrun of €4 million, 25% of the original cost.

Los Cristianos bay will be bracing itself for the arrival of a fleet of bulldozers if the collective might of the authorities gets its way – and all the signs are that it will.

Last week Arona’s mayor, José Alberto González Reverón said: “The expropriation of property in this area and its subsequent demolition are necessary steps to total recuperation.”

It is no secret that the town council has been involved in many meetings with Costas and the regional government with a view to establishing the precise framework within which the restoration of the bay can be achieved.

The estimated budget for the compulsory purchase of affected properties is in the region of €35 million.

“We understand the position of the owners, but we are asking an effort to be made to transform Los Cristianos into a truly first class tourist destination,” said the mayor. “The compensation we will offer will be fair and dignified.”

The total number of doomed properties are “eight or nine”, he said, “although we recognize that some of the buildings contain many apartments in which case a large number of people will be affected.”

The plan is to give the land recovered over to public space and a promenade.

€21 million will be invested by the Canarian Department of Employment and Industry to create jobs for the unemployed in social and community projects.

Over 300 local council projects will benefit from the investment. The scheme aims to get as many people as possible off the dole and create permanent job opportunities.

Memorial service for Clifford Morgan

Posted by dolly diver on April 18, 2008
Posted in Local News 

This article has been printed at the request of the The Tenerife Sun – They apologise to their readers as the date given in the paper for the memorial service is not correct.

ONE of the founders of the west coast’s Los Gigantes will be remembered at a
memorial service in the centre of the village on THURSDAY April 24th. 12.00 (NOT SUNDAY as printed in The Tenerife sun).

William Clifford Morgan died, aged 91, at a nursing home near his birthplace of Haverford West, South Wales, on February 15.

His daughter, Jane Fenton-May, arranged the noon memorial service at the
Espiritu Santo Church, LosGigantes, for his many friends and admirers to recognise the prominent part he played in the development of the popular holiday resort.

Clifford, as he was known, came to live permanently in Los Gigantes with his second wife, Tricia, on his retirement in 1981.

They had holidayed there together for many years before that and, on settling in the emerging village, Clifford threw his considerable energies into its development.

He was president of the residents’ association when the mayor of Santiago del Teide,
unprepared and under-resourced for the influx of foreign residents, delegated authority to them to develop key municipal services out of their own pockets.

For his leadership during this time Clifford was honoured on his 80th birthday by being presented with a key to the municipality.

A linguist with a scientific bent that he exploited to the full throughout his army career, he was also a keen animal lover and one of the prime movers in development
of the village’s Friends of the Animals charity.

Physically fitter than many 20years younger, he was regularly seen walking his beloved boxer, Becky, after Tricia’s death from cancer in 1991, and continued to take a keen interest in the preservation of Los Gigantes as a peaceful holiday and residential centre.

With German neighbours he fought all the way to the Madrid High Court in 2000 to have a Scandinavian-owned apart hotel returned to its original use as a block of individual apartments.

Sadly, Clifford’s once keen intellect became impaired in his early 80s and his daughter brought him back to her home in Pembrokeshire, where he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2003.

But his memory lives on in the minds and affections of many older residents in Los Gigantes and the little church is expected to be filled for the memorial service to be conducted by Fr Keith Gordon.

After the service open house has been declared at the nearby CK’s Restaurant for Clifford’s many friends and admirers to exchange memories of his life and exploits.

Note from Dolly Diver.
It’s sad to print the news of another very respected member of the community passing away. I remember Clifford very well for the time I spent with him as a volunteer of Friends of the Animals, and Paul has many good memories of the times Clifford spend assisting in the work of the Lions – Santiago del Teide Branch.
Condolences to his family from the team