French and Riviera News Thursday 12th October 2017


Jail - The founder of the ‘Promenade des Anges’ association, representing victims of the July 14th attack, has been sentenced to 18 months in prison with 6 months suspended for fraud and breach of trust. The decision was announced on Wednesday evening by the court in Nice.

Stade du Ray - Authorities in Nice have started the demolition process of the former home of OGC Nice the “Stade du Ray”. Bulldozers started work on the football stadium, which was built in 1927  at the end of September. It is not yet known what is planned for the site which is located in the north of the city. 

Bomb - A number of students have needed treatment after a suspected tear-gas grenade was let off at a school in St-Martin-du-Var. The school was evacuated on Wednesday after 50 students, playing in the schoolyard, suddenly complained of breathing difficulties. One described how there was suddenly a weird smell and every started coughing. Police are working on the theory that one of the  students launched a smoke or tear gas canister as a joke.

Strike - A new bus strike is set for the Menton and Monaco areas, after drivers served strike notice on Zest Bus in a demand for increased salaries and better working conditions. The five day strike will start next Monday and is planned to last for the entire week.

Picasso - The villa in Grasse, formally owed by the Guinness family, then later by Winston Churchill, and most famously by Picasso, who lived his final years there, has come on the market for €20m. The house is being sold by the former owners creditors who describe the price as a bargain.

Restaurant “Chez Bruno” - The gastronomic restaurant "Chez Bruno" located in Lorgues in the Var has ranked third in the list for best gourmet restaurants in France, according to the Travelers' choice selection on the TripAdvisor website and eleventh at the European level.

Free Flight World Master in Saint Tropez - Saint Tropez is expecting thousands of spectators this week-end as the 7th edition of the Free Flight World Master takes place. The biggest air show in France promises to beat new records this year as well as impress the public with the Mirage 2000 as part of the show.


Paris court - A Paris court has given prison sentences to seven far-left activists associated with the burning of a police car during protests against the previous government's labour reform in 2016. The longest term behind bars was given to a Swiss man who is currently on the run. The attack happened on the fringes of a demonstration by police officers against "anti-cop hatred" during protests against the Socialist government's changes to labour law.

The EU flag - The EU flag is at the centre of a political row in France, with eurosceptics demanding it be removed from parliament and President Emmanuel Macron insisting it will remain. The hard-left France Unbowed party has demanded that the blue-and-yellow flag which has hung alongside the French flag in the lower house National Assembly for the past 10 years be taken down and replaced with the UN flag. The party leader Jean-Luc Melenchon who ran a failed bid for president this year argued that the assembly should ditch the EU banner because "it does not create consensus". The proposal immediately received a thumbs up from the far-right National Front (FN), whose leader Marine Le Pen refused to take part in a television interview during the presidential campaign unless an EU banner on the set was removed.

Fake - A new survey has found that up to a third of online reviews for French hotels and restaurants are fake. The report by DGCCRF found many businesses would give themselves positive reviews, and their competitors negative ones, and also using moderation tools to delete negative comments. New rules are being implemented from January to try and combat the problem.

Cornichons - My “petite cornichon” is very much in the news as French cornichons make a comeback. Over the past 25 years, market forces have shifted production of the cornichon which was  once an all-French affair  almost entirely to growers in South Asia and eastern Europe. But a Franco-Swiss company, Reitzel, has found a way to revive an age-old tradition in France by designing a contract that has enticed a small but a growing number of local farmers. Five farmers have signed up with Reitzel, which this year expects to produce 400,000 jars of made-in-France cornichons under the label Le Jardin d'Orante, compared with 110,000 last year.


Minutes from the last policy meeting of the US Federal Reserve suggest that some members of the Federal Open Markets Committee are concerned about inflation and are questioning whether the slow pick-up in prices may be due to long-term trends and not just short-term factors. Many analysts’ think that the Fed will raise interest rates again before the end of the year but the minutes show that some policymakers are reluctant to take action before they’ve studied incoming data. Recent comments by Fed chair Janet Yellen point towards uncertainty about what’s driving inflation rates. Previously Ms Yellen had suggested that lagging inflation was probably due to temporary factors such as lower prices for a range of consumer goods but more recently she’s pointed to other areas that could include long-term changes to health care prices as well as economic shifts driven by the internet.

James Murdoch will be forced to defend his position as Sky chairman at the company’s annual shareholder meeting today. Three advisory firms have called on Sky shareholders to rebel against Mr Murdoch who’s also the chief executive of 21st Century Fox. One of the firms,Royal London ,which owns 44 million pounds in Sky shares has criticised Mr Muroch’s dual position as “inappropriate” amid Fox’s attempted bid to take over the UK satellite broadcaster. More than 28 percent of Sky shareholders voted against Mr Murdoch returning as Sky chairman last year,four years after he stood down in the wake of the phone-hacking scandal at the News of the World newspaper. Fox’s bid to buy the 61 percent of Sky that it doesn’t already own is the subject of a UK Competition and Markets Authority investigation.

And-Delta Airlines has announced that it will refuse to pay a 300 percent US tariff on Candian built CSeries Bombardier jets,raising doubts about its purchase of 75 of the new aircraft at a list price of more than 5 billion dollars. Delta’s chief executive Ed Bastian said that the firm “was not going to pay the tariffs or anything of that ilk”. Delta is the only major US carrier to buy the CSeries so far and the firm has called the Commerce Department’s decision to impose anti-dumping tariffs on the jets as “nonsensical”. The proposed new duties would not take effect unless confirmed by the US International Trade Commission early next year.


Cricket-The troubled England all-rounder Ben Stokes has lost his sponsorship with the sportswear brand New Balance. The 26 year old was arrested on the 26th of September on suspicion of causing actual bodily harm following an incident outside a Bristol nightclub. Since then,the England and Wales Cricket Board has ruled that Stokes will not travel to Australia with the rest of the Ashes squad on the 28th of October pending further police investigations. New Balance says that it does not condone behaviour that doesn’t match its brand culture and values.

Formula 1-Rober Kubica has completed the first of his tests for Williams as the team assesses whether he can make a comeback. The 32 year old Pole,who was seriously injured in a rally crash in 2011 drove a 2014 Williams car at Silverstone on Wednesday and was reported to have had a “successful day”. He’s due to test again at the Hungaroring sometime before the US Grand Prix although the date has not been confirmed.

Football-The former England and Manchester United star Paul Scholes has been interviewed for the vacant manager’s job at League One side Oldham Athletic. Scholes,who’s 42 has no managerial experience but was a boyhood Oldham fan. Oldham have been without a manager since John Sheridan left in September with the team bottom of the table.

Rugby Union-England’s Jack Nowell could miss the autumn internationals after suffering a fractured cheek bone while playing for Exeter Chiefs last weekend. The 24 year old may now need surgery and could be out for 8 weeks. England play Argentina.Australia and Samoa in successive weeks starting on the 11th of November.

Tennis-The Italian world number 8 Fabio Fognini has been fined 96,000 dollars and given a suspended Grand Slam ban for abusing an umpire at the US Open last month. The 30 year old used foul and insulting language towards the umpire during his first round defeat by Stefano Travaglia. Fognini said that he accepted and understood the punishment and would not be appealing.


Mainly fine with light variable   winds. Top temperatures 22-25 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 15 degrees in coastal areas and 12 degrees inland with clear skies.  

Friday and the start of the weekend–Mainly fine with highs of 21-24 degrees


Leamington Spa has been named the happiest place to live in Great Britain, knocking Leigh-on-Sea off the top spot. The Warwickshire town scored the highest in Rightmove's annual Happy at Home study, which asked over 17,000 people across 159 areas of the country how happy they are where they live.

The results were based on how they ranked 12 factors ranging from community spirit and safety to green spaces and local amenities.

Leamington Spa was rated by locals as a friendly place with a strong sense of belonging where residents feel they can be themselves.









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