French and Riviera News Wednesday 18th April 2018


SNCF Strike - French rail workers have announced strike action today and tomorrow with services set to be disrupted until Friday morning. One TGV train out of three and two out of every five regional trains is expected to be operating and on international services, there will be four Eurostar trains out of five.

Meanwhile with Air France employees continuing their strike action today more than half of flights to and from Nice International Airport are expected to be cancelled.

Local MP calls for tougher security – Local MP Eric Pauget has requested increased security in the Alpes-Maritimes during questions presented to the government on Tuesday. The deputy of the Alpes Maritimes raised concerns that due to understaffing there was an urgent need for additional police officers during the tourist period especially in Antibes, Juan-les-Pins and Golfe-Juan Vallauris.

84 year old run over in Nice City centre - An 84 year old woman has been run over and killed in Nice City centre. Police have launched an inquiry and appealed for witnesses following the accident which occurred shortly after 7pm on Tuesday evening on the Rue Dante.

Police operation in Nice - Traffic was diverted and students at Lycée Masséna in Nice remained confined on Tuesday evening after police cordoned off the area after an armed individual threatened to attack police from his home. The man who is reported to be suffering from depression was later arrested by police.

Hotel La Perouse - A hearing in Marseille this week has seen some 20 offers made for the takeover of the mythical hotel in Nice, La Perouse. The French hotel group has been placed in receivership since the end of September. According to reports both French and US investments are being considered with the future of the hotel being determined at the next hearing on May 15th.

Royal couple to visit the Riviera - It’s been announced that the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall will arrive in Nice on 7th May as part of a short visit to France.  They are expected to pay tribute to the victims of the July 2016 attack and to attend a reception to celebrate the historic links between Nice and the UK.  The couple will then go on to Lyon where they will take part in a ceremony to mark the 73rd anniversary of the end of the Second World War in Europe. 

Red Bull Air Race – Motorists are reminded that diversions will be in place in Cannes this weekend as it prepares to welcome the Red Bull Air Race. For the first time in the history pilots will compete in the skies along the beaches of Cannes from Friday to Sunday.


Face transplant - Frenchman Jerôme Hamon has become the first person in the world to undergo two face transplants.  Hamon, who suffers from a condition which causes disfiguring tumours, underwent his first transplant in 2010, but his body eventually rejected his new face which had to be removed. He is now in a Paris hospital, three months after undergoing an unprecedented second transplant carried out by Laurent Lantieri, the same professor of plastic surgery who carried out the first procedure.

Emmanuel Macron - In his first speech to the European parliament, French president Emmanuel Macron has likened the political divisions in Europe to a civil war and warned against growing illiberalism on the continent. The vast majority of the speech was, about the future of the EU without the UK, and the need for the 27 other member states to be united in opposition to the emergence of the nationalist authoritarian traits of the past.


Asian shares have edged up this morning following Tuesday’s rise on Wall Street but investors are still concerned about trade barriers while the IMF’s latest global growth outlook kept currencies and bonds subdued.
Meanwhile there have been further signs of caution in the latest Bank of America/Merrill Lynch survey of fund managers which has shown that investors are putting more funds away into cash while cutting their equity allocations to an 18 month low.
Only 5 percent of fund managers expected stronger global growth over the next 12 months with most thinking that there is more volatility on the way for equity markets with further headline risks.

The International Monetary Fund has forecast that 2018 will be the strongest year for global growth since 2011.
In a new assessment of the World Economic Outlook,the IMF is predicting growth of 3.9 percent this year and in 2019.
However,it warned that growth would be curtailed by trade barriers and said that the current momentum was not “assured”.
The World Economic Outlook report refers to “waning support for global integration” and says that increased trade barriers,tariffs or other restrictions,could harm sentiment in financial markets,disrupt global supply chains and slow the spread of new technology.
It warned that protectionism would affect consumers by making tradable goods more expensive.

And-Starbucks is to close more than 8,000 branches in the US for an afternoon next month to carry out “racial bias” training.
The company says that the aim is to prevent discrimination at Starbucks with the move coming after the firm had to apologise over last week’s arrest of two black men who were waiting to meet a friend at a store in Philadelphia.
The firm’s chief executive Kevin Johnson has spent the last few days in Philadelphia and has met the two men who were arrested.The men’s lawyer and Starbucks say that the discussions had been “constructive”.



The British number one Kyle Edmund has been beaten by Andreas Seppi in the first round of the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters.

Edmund went down in three sets to the world number 62 who’ll now play Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain.

Elsewhere the 5th seed Dominic Thiem beat Andrey Rublev of Russia 5-7 7-5 7-5 and the 4th seed Grigor Dimitrov survived a scare to beat Pierre-Hugues Herbert of France 3-6 6-2 6-4.

Play on all courts at the Monte Carlo Country Club starts at 11am again this morning.The weather is set fair but there could be some of that infamous Monaco cloud at times this afternoon.

Most of the big guns will be in action today including Marin Cilic,Alexander Zverev and Noval Djokovic.


If you’re driving in for the tennis then use one of the numerous car parks on the Port area at La Condamine,La Digue or Parking des Pecheurs and then take the free bus service from the Port to the Monte Carlo Country Club.Many car parks are offering a 5 euro flat fee for the day on presentation of your tennis ticket.

The most convenient way in though is by train, with the SNCF operating special services throughout the tournament to  the Monte Carlo Country club and calling at all major stations along the line to and from Nice and Cannes.

However,there will be disruption to services today because of strike action today and tomorrow with only one in three scheduled services expected to be operating.

For more information on the tennis go to

Football-Brighton grabbed a valuable point last night as they held Spurs to a 1-1 draw in the English Premier League.

A point each puts Brighton on 36 points-8 clear of the relegation zone while Spurs remain on track for the Champions League next season in 4th place.

There’s 1 game tonight.Bournemouth host Manchester United.

Formula 1-Daniel Ricciardo has said that last weekend’s victory in the Chinese Grand Prix is not enough on its own for him to sign a new contract at Red Bull.

The Australian is out of contract at Red Bull at the end of this season and there could be openings at both Mercedes and Ferrari.

He says that he wants to be with the best car  and a few more wins with Red Bull would make things look very attractive.If not,he said that there are probably other options.


Clear skies  with light variable or winds.

Top temperature 22 degrees Celsius.

Overnight lows of 15 degrees on the coast and 11 degrees inland with clear skies.

Wednesday and Thursday-Clear skies with highs of 21-25 degrees.






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