French and Riviera News Monday 23rd May 2022


Severe weather - Several departments in France have been hit by severe weather this Sunday. In Châteauroux, central France, there was significant damage and several vehicles were hit by hail. Météo France lifted the orange alert for thunderstorms overnight from Sunday to Monday in the 21 departments concerned. However, 86 departments remain on a yellow weather alert until 4pm this afternoon. This weekend, new heat records for the month of May were recorded, particularly in the Massif Central and the Alps.

Fatal road accident - A 30-year-old motorcyclist has died in a collision in Evenos in the Var. The accident occurred at around 3.30pm on Sunday afternoon at the exit of the village when the two-wheeler collided with a car. Emergency services intervened and the traffic was diverted in the area. Police have opened an investigation to determine the exact circumstances.

Two people die in apartment fire - Police in Toulon have opened an investigation into the cause of an apartment fire in Six Fours at the weekend, in which two people died. The fire reportedly ravaged the second-floor apartment on avenue Joseph-Raynaud. A 51-year-old man died of his injuries. His partner, 48, also died.

Individual placed in police custody - An individual has been placed in police custody after a road accident in La Croix-Valmer in the Var. Following a collision between a motorcycle and a car on Sunday morning, the motorist was found and placed in police custody. The incident occurred at around 7am on the chemin de Saunier Vieux.

New minister accused of rape - Newly appointed minister of Solidarity Damien Abad, has been accused of rape by two women for facts dating back to 2010 and 2011. Since the publication of an article by Mediapart on Saturday Abad has contested and strongly denied the accusations.

Cannes Film Festival - A huge banner with the names of the victims of feminicides in France has been displayed on the red carpet of the 75th Cannes Film Festival on Sunday May 22nd. The names of the 129 victims were displayed by members of a feminist collective “les Colleuses” ahead of the screening of their documentary "Riposte féministe", which follows the group of activists sticking, often at night, messages on the walls of cities to denounce violence, sexual assault, and harassment.

Antibes Rally - Yoann Bonato has won the 57th Antibes-Côte d’Azur Rally. After several unsuccessful attempts, the quadruple French rally champion entered the winners of the Antibes round this Sunday. A timely victory keeping him in the race for the 2022 title.


One of the UK's biggest energy suppliers has warned that up to 40% of its customers will be in fuel poverty by October as it called on the government to help struggling homes. A household is considered to be in fuel poverty if it has to spend 10% or more of its disposable income on energy.

Meanwhile Russia has halted its gas supply to Finland in the latest escalation of an energy payments row with the West. Russia's gas giant Gazprom confirmed it had completely halted exports to Finland. Finland said all the deliveries had stopped but added there would be no disruption to customers. Helsinki has been refusing to pay for its supplies in roubles. But the cut-off also follows an announcement that Finland will apply for Nato membership.

The Spanish brand Zara which has been established in France since 1990 has decided to charge its customers for returning orders placed on the internet. Since April 28th, 2022, there is a charge of 1 euro 95 deducted from the amount reimbursed. Zara counts 2,000 stores worldwide and in 2021, the brand generated 19.6 billion euros in turnover.


Football - Manchester City have won the Premier League by a point over challengers Liverpool with a stunning 3-2 comeback win against Aston Villa. City were 2-0 down to Villa with 15 minutes left before a sensational five-minute comeback. Had they not won, Liverpool would have been champions.

Meanwhile Kylian Mbappe has "sincerely thanked" Real Madrid after rejecting them to stay at Paris St-Germain. The France World Cup winner had agreed a financial package with Real months ago for a potential switch to Spain. On Saturday, PSG announced Mbappe, 23, had signed a lucrative new three-year deal to stay with PSG.

Formula One – Max Verstappen has taken the title lead for the first time in 2022 after winning what was a thrilling Grand Prix in Spain at the weekend. Verstappen finished ahead of Mercedes George Russell and Charles Leclerc after he was forced to retire.

Tennis - Spanish sensation Carlos Alcaraz began his French Open bid with a straight-set win over Argentina's Juan Ignacio Londero on the opening day in Paris. 19-year-old Alcaraz, is among the favourites for the men's singles title after a stunning start to 2022.


Some light cloud to begin with becoming increasingly cloudy by this afternoon, with light winds. Highs of 23 degrees in Monaco, Nice and Cannes this evening going down to 16 degrees with clear skies. In Saint Tropez and the Var, sunny intervals with a moderate breeze and highs of 25 degrees.

Outlook for tomorrow and Wednesday - Sunny intervals highs of 24-25 degrees.

And Finally

According to scientists gardening is 'good for the soul'. They claim that it improves happiness and emotional wellbeing as much as cycling, walking or eating out.

The new study by Princeton University researchers found getting outdoors and gardening was particularly beneficial for women in low income households.

While running or sports may provide more physical exertions, gardening works better as an emotional pick-me-up than other activities.


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