French and Riviera News Friday 20th October 2017


Student dies on field trip in Corsica - The University of Sophia Antipolis has announced that one of its students has died during a field trip in Corsica. No details have yet been given of the circumstances of the young man’s death. The university released a statement on Thursday evening confirming the  news and expressed its deep sadness and led a tribute to the “discreet and passionate student appreciated by all his comrades and teachers who was studying a Masters in Science and the environment at the university.

Strike Action - While unions have called for a second day of strike action against the current labour reforms the SNCF has ensured that the majority of its trains will circulate. However traffic on the regional TER network will be affected with 1 out of 2 trains between Cannes, Nice and Ventimiglia. The region’s tram and bus services are also expected to be affected.

Petition at the closure of a pharmaceutical company in Sophia - The employees of the pharmaceutical research and development company Galderma based in Sophia Antipolis have launched a petition against the future closure of the site. The petition has gathered 7,000 signatures as employees argue that the company has received millions of public money as research tax credit, so closing the site is an injustice and a waste. Galderma, established since 1981 on the Côte d'Azur, is expected to remove at least 400 jobs on its Sophia Antipolis site in 2018.

New store for sufferers of breast cancer to open in Nice - A new shop opens in Nice today dedicated to sufferers of breast cancer. “La Maison Dupuyten” offers specialized products adapted to patients and opens its doors during “Pink October” which is breast cancer awareness month. Speaking to local media, the director Jérôme Gilbert said "One in eight women is affected by breast cancer. Here, the aim is offer woman a more attractive and convivial way to help”. Dupuytren is located at 26, rue Lamartine in Nice.

Best hotel restaurant in Europe - The Restaurant Christophe Bacquié of the Hotel & Spa du Castellet has been awarded "best hotel restaurant in Europe". The restaurant located in the Var was given the title by a jury of 24 journalists.


Storms forecast for south western France - Parts of southern France have been placed on alert for with violent storms set to hit the region this afternoon. The south central regions of Herault and Aude were placed on orange alert at 6am this morning by national weather agency Meteo France. The weather agency has called this the "first significant episode of the season", warning of the risk of "violent thunderstorms and sustained rainfall". 

Canadian producer accused of sexual assault - A French television channel has pulled a hit talent show on which Canadian producer Gilbert Rozon is a judge after he was accused of sexual assault and harassment. Rozon reportedly  stepped down as boss of the Just for Laughs comedy festival in Montreal after a comedian publicly accused him of being an "aggressor" following allegations from a number of women.

New anti-terror bill – The French president Emmanuel Macron has ignored the controversy and criticism surrounding France's new anti-terror bill and urged police forces around the country to "fully utilise" their new powers. The French parliament this week, adopted a controversial anti-terror bill that gives the authorities permanent new powers to search homes, shut places of worship and restrict freedom of movement.

French actress Danielle Darrieux dies - French actress and singer Danielle Darrieux has died aged 100. Fondly referred to as the "grande dame" of French cinema, Darrieux had about a 140 films to her name in a career over eight decades. But her decision to continue working during the Nazi occupation of France saw her branded as a collaborator. Born in Bordeaux in 1917, Darrieux started in comedy with a film role on Le Bal at just 14.


The chief executive of Goldman Sachs has hinted that Frankfurt will become a key European base for the bank post-Brexit. Lloyd Blankfein tweeted on Thursday that he’d “just left Frankfurt” and that he’d be “spending a lot more time there” with the hashtag ‘Brexit’. The firm employs 6,600 staff in London and is known to have taken office space in Frankfurt. Banks are extremely worried that the UK and the EU will fail to strike a trade deal resulting in the loss of passporting rights which allow them to sell financial services across borders. Several international banks are preparing to shift parts of their operations from London to the continent in preparation for Britain’s exit from the EU. Frankfurt has emerged as the biggest beneficiary so far.

More than a hundred cities in the United States have expressed an interest in hosting Amazon’s new headquarters. The deadline for proposals to host the new centre which will create up to 50,000 jobs passed on Thursday. The investment by Amazon will also create tens of thousands of other jobs in construction  and in the surrounding community. Amazon says that its new centre will be the “full equal” of its Seattle base which currently houses more than 40,000 staff in 33 buildings. The online retail giant estimates that it invested 38 billion dollars into Seattle’s economy between 2010 and 2016.

And-UK retail sales fell unexpectedly by 0.8 percent in September reversing a jump in August. The Office for National Statistics says that third quarter retail growth slowed to a year-on-year rate of 1.5 percent-its lowest level since the second quarter of 2013. The latest figures come as the Bank of England contemplates its first interest rate rise in a decade. Sterling fell as investors betted that the poor retail numbers would make an imminent rate rise less likely.


Football-Pressure is growing on the Everton manager Ronald Koeman after the team lost 2-1 at home to Lyon in the Europa League last night. Everton remain bottom of Group E and are hovering just above the relegation zone in the English Premier League after having spent 100 million pounds on new players before the start of the season. Arsenal top their Europa League group following a 1-0 away win at Red Star Belgrade while Nice lost 3-1 at home to Lazio Rome.

In the English Premier League this weekend. Tonight West Ham play Brighton and then tomorrow it’s Chelsea against Watford.Huddersfield against Manchester United.Manchester City play Burnley.Newcastle host Crystal Palace.Stoke play Bournemouth.Swansea host Leicester and Southampton play West Brom.

On Sunday Everton play Arsenal and Spurs host Liverpool.

Formula 1-Fernando Alonso has signed a new contract with McLaren which will keep him at the team at least for next season. The 36 year old double-world champion is confident that McLaren’s engine switch to Renault next season will make the car more competitive adding that he feels “at home” at McLaren. First practice for Sunday’s US Grand Prix at Austin takes place at 5pm this afternoon with Lewis Hamilton in with the chance of clinching a 5th world title. Hamilton will win the world championship if he takes the chequered flag at Austin and title rival Sebastien Vettel fails to finish in the top 5. Second practice is at 9pm tonight with qualifying at 11pm tomorrow night and the race at 9pm on Sunday.

Rugby Union-There’s 1 game in the European Champions Cup tonight.Scarlets play Bath in Pool 5. Ties to watch out for over the weekend include Cleremont Auvergne against Northampton in Pool 2 tomorrow and Wasps against Harlequins in Pool 1 on Sunday.


Clear skies with moderate  easterly winds. Top temperatures 23 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 15 degrees on the coast and 13 degrees inland with clear skies.  

The weekend–Clear skies with highs of 21-23 degrees.











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