French and Riviera News Monday 19th August 2019


Emmanuel Macron to meet with Vladimir Putin in the Var - French President Emmanuel Macron will be meeting later today with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin at his holiday retreat Fort Brégançon in Bormes les Mimosas in the Var. Macron is expected to revive EU attempts to persuade Vladimir Putin to help resolve international crises over Ukraine and Iran. Macron has invited Mr Putin to Brégançon ahead of the Group of Seven nations’ summit, which begins in France later in the week.

Weather warning in Eastern France - Eastern France has been hit by violent hailstorms. Meteo France had on Sunday, placed twelve departments from the Loire to Alsace on an orange weather alert. Heavy rain along with hailstone and strong winds hit the region as images were shared on social media. The Rhone experienced more than 7,000 lightning bolts in two hours. The warning is expected to be lifted this morning.

Rugby player found dead in hotel room - A twenty-year-old rugby league player from the UK has been found dead in his hotel room in Toulouse. Archie Bruce (20), was found in the early morning of Sunday, having had his debut match against Toulouse on Saturday evening. Expected to return to England on Sunday, his teammates and club leaders remained in Toulouse for the needs of the investigation which has been opened by police.

Firefighters – There have been two assaults carried out on firefighters in France over the weekend once again bringing attention to an ongoing problem. Firefighters in France have been on strike in 90 departments since June in protest against “the government's mismanagement of these escalating attacks,". On Saturday afternoon, just outside of Paris, a 15-year-old boy attacked two firefighters who came to rescue him after a suicide attempt and on Sunday morning in Calvi, Haute Corse, a man assaulted and injured a firefighter who came to his aid. In 2018, in Paris, 300 firefighters were attacked, an increase of 60%. Unions are planning to meet on August 27 to decide what action to take next.

French couple arrested in Sardinia - A French couple have been arrested in Sardinia for attempting to bring home some 40 kilos of sand. The two tourists were arrested when boarding a ferry from Porto Torres to Toulon. The grains of sand were taken from the beach of Chia, located south of the Italian island. The two Frenchmen tried to justify themselves, saying that they wanted to take a souvenir of the island and that in no case were they aware that it could constitute a crime. They are now being prosecuted for "aggravating circumstance". The penalty for this type of crime can range from 1 to 6 years of imprisonment. Sardinia has been plagued for some years by theft of "natural memories" such as sand, pebbles and shells. A real illegal business exists on the Internet.

Church bells are going missing in the Var –Police in the Var have appealed to the public as part of an ongoing investigation into the mysterious disappearance of church bells in the region. In the space of just one month four chapels have been targeted. A situation which is worrying the residents of several local villages and town halls in the region.


Hiker found dead - Simon Gautier, the French hiker who has been missing in Italy since 9th August, has been found dead. Italian media confirmed on Sunday that the 27-year-old had been found at the bottom of a ravine by alpine rescue workers.

Waiter shot - A waiter near Paris has been shot dead by a customer who was reportedly angry because his sandwich was not prepared quickly enough. Police say a murder investigation has been launched after the incident in the eastern suburb of the city. The suspect fled the scene and has not been caught. Emergency services tried to save the 28-year-old waiter, who had been shot in the shoulder, but he died at the scene.


Argentina's economy minister has resigned amid a financial crisis following the president's defeat in a primary poll. The country's peso shed 20% of its value against the US dollar after the President suffered the resounding loss last Sunday.

U.S. President Donald Trump and top White House officials have dismissed concerns that economic growth may be faltering, saying on Sunday they saw little risk of recession despite a volatile week on global bond markets, and insisting their trade war with China was doing no damage to the United States.

And - In the UK a secret government report warning of food, fuel and drug shortages under a no-deal Brexit is out of date, according to Michael Gove. The cabinet minister in charge of co-ordinating Whitehall preparations for Britain to leave the EU on 31 October insisted it was an "old document" that only looked at "what the very, very worst situation would be". He admitted there "will be some bumps in the road, some element of disruption in the event of no-deal" but added since it was first published preparations have been stepped up.


Cricket - England had to settle for a draw in the second Ashes Test, on a gripping final day at Lord's. Having to bat 48 overs to save the game, Australia were 132-3 in the 36th over, only to lose three wickets for 17 runs in the next five. Australia will retain the Ashes if they win the third Test at Headingley, which begins on Thursday.

Football - Frank Lampard said managing Chelsea at Stamford Bridge for the first time was the "stuff of dreams", despite a second-half header earning Leicester City a deserved point. Tonight, in the Premier League Wolverhampton play Manchester United. Kickoff is at 9pm French time.

Rugby Union – England’s head coach Eddie Jones says Wales are "favourites to win the World Cup" after they secured their rise to the top of the world rankings by beating his side 13-6 in Cardiff. George North's try helped Wales to a victory that will see them become world number one for the first time. England won 33-19 against Warren Gatland's side in their first World Cup warm-up, but faltered away from home.

Golf – American Justin Thomas claimed the BMW Championship by three shots. Overnight leader Thomas, who set a new course record with a third-round 61, closed with a 68 to finish 25 under. Tiger Woods finished on seven under and will not defend his title at next week's season-ending Tour Championship after missing out on the 30-man field.


Partially cloudy across the region with showers expected inland. Highs of 29 degrees in Nice, Antibes, Vence, Cannes. 31 degrees in Saint Tropez and Cavalaire. Light south westerly wind. This evening going down to 20 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes and 16 degrees in the Var with clear skies.

The outlook for Tuesday similar to today with highs of 32 degrees.  


A survey suggests that Glaswegians are the most generous tippers abroad.

Only 3.5 per cent of the city’s residents say they never tip in taxis and one in ten never do so in bars overseas, against around 30 per cent from Brighton, Plymouth or Southampton.

The research also puts Edinburgh fifth among the most generous cities while Bristol is bottom – with nearly a fifth of Bristolians never tipping taxis or housekeepers.

Cities were ranked as most to least generous, with London (13th) and Birmingham (15th) both outside the top ten.

People from Sheffield were the second most generous tippers, followed by Liverpudlians and residents of Belfast.

The research found nearly a third (32.1 per cent) of people from Liverpool always tip taxi drivers overseas, while nearly half (46.7 per cent) of people from Belfast always tip in restaurants, as do two-fifths (40 per cent) of people from Cardiff. 

Nearly a fifth will add a tip if the service has been exceptional while 12.6 per cent leave tips because it is expected – but do not like doing it

Most generous cities: 1. Glasgow; 2. Sheffield; 3. Liverpool; 4. Belfast; 5. Edinburgh; 6. Manchester; 7. Norwich; 8. Southampton; 9. Cardiff; 10. Brighton. 




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