French and Riviera News Monday 16th May 2022


Obligation to wear a mask lifted from today - From today Monday 16th May, wearing a mask on public transport will no longer be an obligation in France. The obligation will also be lifted at airports and onboard planes throughout the European Union. However, be careful of different health instructions in other countries if you are traveling outside of the EU. Latest figures show that the number of daily covid cases on average stands at 32,000 and that there are 20,000 patients currently hospitalised with covid in France. The mask will still be an obligation in places of healthcare, as specified on the government site such as hospitals, laboratories and at a doctor’s surgery.

Monaco two new cases of covid - Meanwhile it was on Friday that Monaco lifted the obligation to wear a mask indoors with it no longer being compulsory, both for staff and for visitors, in shops and other closed places open to the public in the Principality. On Sunday two new cases of covid were identified in Monaco bringing the total number f residents affected to 12,006. Seven people are in hospital and 48 are being followed by the home monitoring Centre.

Prefect announces that he will challenge the authorisation of the burkini in public swimming pools - The prefect of Isère has announced that he is ready to challenge the authorization of the burkini in swimming pools. Today the municipal council of Grenoble could modify the regulations of its swimming pools in order to authorize swimming in a Burkini. However, Laurent Prevost announced on Sunday evening in a press release that plans to ask the administrative court to cancel the authorization. The Grenoble city council is preparing to modify the swimming pool regulations on Monday to lift the current restrictive dress requirements. For the ecologist mayor Éric Piolle, it is a question of "ensuring equal access to public services and the freedom to dress or undress, while respecting hygiene and safety". In Rennes, the city changed its regulations in 2018 and the burkini has since been authorized in swimming pools.

Road accident - Three people have been injured one seriously, following a road accident in the Var on Sunday. The accident occurred shortly before midday in Cotignac on the RD13 when two cars collided head on. Police have opened an investigation and called for any witnesses to come forward in order to determine the exact cause of the collision.

Left in the dark in Saint-Tropez - Several restaurants and shops have been left in the dark in Saint-Tropez following a power cut on Sunday evening. The incident occurred on the Quai de L’Epi at around 7.15pm after a transformer caught fire at a restaurant. Firefighters intervened containing the flames. Enedis agents were on site to try and ensure that the power is restored before the opening of shops and restaurants this Monday morning.  

Why has the alcohol content in French wines risen? - Finally, why has the alcohol content in wines, from Bordeaux to Burgundy risen? According to recent research the phenomenon which concerns all of France is not just a matter of climate change. Over recent years the degree of alcohol has increased significantly on labels and it’s now common to drink a wine with 13% or even 14% alcohol. While the first factor is indeed climate change (sun and heat increase the sugar level in grapes, particularly true in the south of France). The second factor would be that it is also due to viticultural practices that have evolved over time.


Damage from lockdowns has seen Asian share markets struggle to sustain even a minor rally on Monday after shockingly weak data from China. Meanwhile China’s April property sales by value fell at its fastest pace in at lease 12 years.

Following India’s ban on the export of staple cereal the price of wheat has jumped on international markets. The benchmark wheat index rose as much as 5.9% in Chicago, the highest it has been in two months. The export ban comes as a heatwave has hit India's wheat crops, taking domestic prices to a record high. Government officials also said the ban was not permanent and could be revised.

Milk producers in France are calling for emergency measures as they fear a shortage. The drought, which has affected France for several weeks is a real threat to the dairy industry. Professionals in the industry warn that if the drought continues, breeders would be forced to send cows to the slaughterhouse earlier than planned.

As the airline company EasyJet battles to retain and recruit staff it has announced plans to offer new and existing cabin crew a £1,000 bonus at the end of the summer holiday season. The airline said the payments would acknowledge crews' contributions to what it expects to be a busy summer, with travel at near pre-Covid levels. The aviation industry shed thousands of jobs during the pandemic and airports and airlines have been racing to recruit staff for months, as they plan for a bumper summer. However, some have struggled to hire new staff quickly enough.


Cricket - Former Australia cricketer Andrew Symonds has died aged 46 after being involved in a car crash. The all-rounder played 26 Tests, 198 one-day internationals and 14 Twenty20s for Australia between 1998 and 2009. Symonds was part of two 50-over World Cup wins and Australia's Ashes victory over England in 2006-07. Cricket Australia said it was "shocked and saddened by the news".

Tennis - World number one Novak Djokovic boosted his preparations for next week's French Open by winning his first title of the year at the Italian Open in Rome. Djokovic will be one of the favourites as he chases a record-equalling 21st Grand Slam at the French Open, which starts next Sunday in Paris.

Football – In the FA Cup at the weekend the Reds got their hands back on the trophy for the first time in 16 years by beating Chelsea 6-5 on penalties following a goalless draw in the 2022 final at Wembley on Saturday afternoon.

Meanwhile there are just 15 games left in the Premier League title race with matches today, Tuesday and Thursday before the final day next Sunday. Manchester City are still in control of the title race despite Sunday's 2-2 draw at West Ham, and know that if they win their remaining game, they will be champions for a fourth time in five seasons.

They could win the league on Tuesday if Liverpool lose to Southampton. Meanwhile Liverpool realistically needs to win both their games - and hope Manchester City do not beat Aston Villa on the final day - if they are to win the title and keep their quadruple dream alive. If the Reds draw either of their games, they would need a seven-goal swing on goal difference to catch City. Later today Newcastle play Arsenal kick off is at 9pm French time.

Cycling - Simon Yates' hopes at the Giro d'Italia look to be over after the Briton endured a difficult day on a gruelling ninth stage. Yates, who injured his knee in a crash in the fourth stage, was dropped by his main rivals on the steep final climb and crossed 11 minutes 15 seconds back. The race takes a rest day on Monday.

Formula One – Charles Leclerc’s misfortune on his home track continued on Sunday as he crashed three-time Formula One champion Niki Lauda's 1974 Ferrari during a demonstration lap at the Monaco Historic Grand Prix. Leclerc was testing out Lauda's iconic Ferrari, but he lost control towards the end of his stint in the car due to struggling with a braking issue and went into the barriers. He posted his reaction to the incident on social media afterwards writing on Twitter “When you thought you already had all the bad luck of the world in Monaco and you lose the brakes into rascasse with one of the most iconic historical Ferrari Formula 1 car”.


Cloudy patches to start, improving during the day. Sunny in the afternoon with light winds. Highs of 21 degrees in Nice, 23 in Cannes and 27 in Saint Tropez. 30 degrees inland in the Var at Draguignan. This evening going down to 13 degrees in the Var and 14 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes with clear skies.

Outlook for Tuesday and Wednesday - Sunny with highs of between 23-24 degrees. Possibility of showers inland by Wednesday evening.

And Finally

From "Yeezy" to "Air Max", via "Air Force One" or even "Jordan", 200 iconic sneaker models were auctioned yesterday in Paris. The sale totaled around 120,000 euros, with a record 16,120 euros for a pair of Nike Air Jordan 1.


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