French and Riviera News Friday 6th October 2023


France’s tallest mountain is shrinking - According to researchers the tallest mountain in France, the Mont Blanc, has shrunk over the last two years. Specialist Jean des Garets said the shrinking could have been caused by less rain this summer.  The mountain in southeast France is measured every two years, to try and track the impact of climate change on the Alps. 

Man drowns on the Promenade in Nice - A sixty-year-old man has drowned on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice. The incident occurred at around 5.30pm on Thursday. The victim is believed to have suffered a heart attack and died at the scene. Police are investigating.

University will remain open following meeting - Following a meeting with management and a vote amongst staff, the Aix-Marseille University site, in the city of Marseille, which had announced its closure for a week due to drug trafficking in the area, will remain open. The site which is part of the Aix-Marseille University sites was initially scheduled to close from today October 6, for one week. However, national police personnel will be permanently present on the site to ensure the security of the various access points in an attempt to create a “safer and more engaging environment”.

Marine Le Pen is visiting the Var - The president of the National Rally far-right political party in France, Marine Le Pen is currently in the Var on a two-day visit.  Marine Le Pen arrived on Thursday to coincide with Carer’s Day, with a visit to a day care reception centre in the region. Speaking to journalists Marine Le Pen reaffirmed her ambitions for 2027. The Var has seven RN MPs out of eight and the city of Toulon was led by the National Front from 1995 to 2001.

Security exercise - A civil security exercise is scheduled to take place off Bastia in Corsica today Friday 6th October. The exercise will test the emergency response to an aircraft crashing into the sea. The Maritime Prefect said that many aircraft and boats will operate in the area all day. It has issued regulations regarding navigation, anchoring, scuba diving and swimming off the coast of the department of Haute-Corse during the exercise.

Road diversions in the Var - Traffic disruptions are expected in eastern areas of the Var over the next few days because of the Roc d'Azur cycle race. Thousands of participants are expected for the event which has been taking place since the 1980's. Roads which will be especially affected include the RD7, the RD8 and the RD559.

New decree on quantity of tobacco - The Council of State in France has ordered the Prime Minister to issue "within six months" a decree which could increase the quantities of tobacco that an individual is authorized to bring back to France from another country of the European Union. Since July 2020, a measure had set the limit to 200 cigarettes or 1 carton. However, a decision by the Council of State could soon force France to align itself with European law which allows up to 800 cigarettes, or 4 cartons. Behind the change is Sami Gam, a 22-year-old student at Sciences-Po who claims not to be a big smoker but who out of principle brought the case in a lawsuit against the French state.


US financial regulators are suing Elon Musk after the billionaire said he would no longer cooperate with its investigation into his purchase of Twitter, now known as X.  The lawsuit is the latest feud between the SEC and Mr Musk, who once declared on national television that he had "no respect" for the regulator. The SEC launched its investigation of Mr Musk's $44bn purchase of X last year.

Shares in Metro Bank have plunged after reports it is seeking to raise millions to bolster its finances. The bank's shares sank by as much as a third after newspapers reported it needed to raise up to £600m. Metro Bank sought to reassure investors about its financial position on Thursday. The bank has stressed that its finances remain strong, and it continues to meet all regulatory requirements.

And - Investors and analysts have said that before sandal company Birkenstock lists itself on the New York Stock Exchange next week. It needs to sell more clogs and boots and boost sales from its own website and boutiques to attract new shoppers amid a cost-of-living crisis. Birkenstock is the latest high-profile listing to put investor focus on the initial public offering (IPO) market, which is gradually reopening after two relatively quiet years and a burst of activity in September.


Rugby World Cup – New Zealand have thrashed Uruguay 73-0 seeing them take a place in the World Cup quarter-finals. New Zealand will finish second in Pool A if France avoids defeat against Italy this evening to top the group. The All Blacks will play Ireland or Scotland, who meet on Saturday in Paris, or defending champions South Africa in the last eight.

Football - England manager Gareth Southgate has criticised the video assistant referee system for the negative impact it has on match-going fans. His comments come after VAR officials failed to change the decision when Liverpool had a goal wrongly flagged for offside in a 2-1 defeat at Tottenham last Saturday. Since Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has called for the game to be replayed.

In the Premier League at the weekend. Tomorrow Luton town are at home to Tottenham in the lunchtime game with a 1.30pm kick off French time. Afternoon matches will see Burnley face Chelsea, Everton play Bournemouth, Fulham are at home to Sheffield United, Manchester United play Brentford and Crystal Place face Nottingham Forest. On Sunday Brighton are at home to Liverpool, West Ham play Newcastle, Wolverhampton face Aston Villa and Arsenal are at home to Manchester City.

Four players from Paris St-Germain have received suspended one-match bans for offensive chanting. The French league (LFP) disciplinary committee acted after the players were filmed singing an insulting song towards Marseille fans following PSG's 4-0 win against their rivals on 24 September.

Golf - An investigation is currently under way after a fire broke out at a golf club in Rome, almost a week after the Ryder Cup was held there. In a statement, Ryder Cup Europe said the fire was in a "temporary hospitality structure" and that no-one had been injured.

Formula One - Lewis Hamilton has praised Max Verstappen for doing "an exceptional job". Verstappen stands on the brink of a third consecutive title. Hamilton said: "Max has been faultless and no-one can take that away from him."He has done an amazing job with the package he has."


Fine with a gentle breeze. Highs of 25 degrees in Nice, Monaco and Cannes. 26 degrees in Saint-Tropez. This evening going down to 16 degrees in Nice and 14 degrees in Toulon with clear skies.

The outlook for the weekend remaining fine and sunny with highs of 26 degrees.

Sunrise       07.33am

Sunset        07.03pm


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