French and Riviera News Monday 5th August 2019


Missing person – Police in the Var have launched an appeal following the worrying disappearance of 70-year-old Denis Bouton. Bouton has not been seen since leaving his holiday home in Bormes les Mimosas on Saturday morning shortly after 7.30am. Currently on holiday in the region he was last seen wearing grey cropped trousers, a white polo shirt and a beige cap. Police are asking anyone who may have any information to contact them on

Nice Attack – In an interview with the French newspaper La Journal du Dimanche, published at the weekend, the President of the terrorism analysis centre, Jean Charles Brisard has claimed that for the first time since the terror attack in Nice on July 14th 2016, which claimed 86 lives, a “definite link has been found between Lahouaieji Bouhlel who carried out the attack and the Islamic State”. According to the report key information, discovered in June, could “prove to have important consequences for the families of the victims ahead of the trial”, which is due to be held at the end of 2020.

Fire - The mayor of Peille Jean Marc Rancurel has claimed that the fire which broke out on Sunday afternoon between the village of Peille and Peillon, located in the hills behind Nice was started “deliberately”. Firefighters were quick to arrive at the scene on Sunday lunchtime and soon managed to control the blaze. Meanwhile a second intervention was underway by firefighters in the region on Sunday evening after a homeowner in La Riolan near Gréolières raised the alarm after a blaze broke out a few metres from his home. Little damage was reported and the fire was soon under control. The Prefecture of the Alpes Maritimes has reminded the public that the region is on a high alert due to the risk of fire caused by the dry weather.

Tribute to Steve – Clashes have broken out between police and protesters in Nantes during a rally held on Saturday in tribute to a man who drowned in the River Loire. Several hundred people took to the streets to protest the death of 24-year-old concert-goer Steve Maia Caniço. Meanwhile in Nice the fountain at Place Masséna was tinted in red as a tribute to “Steve”. 250 people gathered on Saturday evening in Nice in protest, against what they consider to be “the lack of action by police into the investigation of his death carried out one month later”.  Protestors later threw white roses into the sea from the Promenade des Anglais.


12 year old French boy in critical condition - A 12-year-old French boy has suffered serious head injuries after being hit by a dustbin, from a height of 20 meters on the beach in northern Italy. The incident happened while the boy was sleeping in a tent with his family. Police have called for any witnesses saying it was a “criminal act and that they hope the culprits will be found”. The family, originally from Haute-Savoie, according to Italian media, have two other children aged 14 and 15 who were also sleeping on the beach of Bergeggi, not far from Savona, in Liguria.

Man charged with importing firearms - British authorities have charged a man with illegally importing firearms in the country after 60 guns were found in his car upon his arrival to Dover from Calais. The UK National Crime Agency said the find is believed to be the "largest seizure of lethal weapons at a UK port." The guns were found by Border Force officers in a Volkswagen Passat arriving at the port of Dover from Calais on Friday.

First ever Channel crossing on a jet-powered flyboard - French inventor Franky Zapata has made the first-ever successful Channel crossing on a jet-powered flyboard. 40-year-old Zapata, 40, took off from Sangatte, near Calais on Sunday and landed in St Margaret's Bay in Dover. The invention made the 22-mile (35.4-km) journey in 22 minutes. Mr Zapata, a former jet-ski champion, had failed in his first attempt to cross the Channel on 25 July after complications with refueling.


A strike planned by Heathrow Airport workers today, has been called off, as talks continue to stop a further walkout on Tuesday. Some 2,500 workers had planned to strike on both days in a row over pay. Britain's busiest airport cancelled 177 flights - roughly one in seven departures - after the Unite union rejected a pay offer.

The chief executive of HSBC has stepped down after the bank said it needed a change in leadership to address a "challenging global environment". John Flint is giving up the role he has held for a year and a half "by mutual agreement with the board".

The entertainment giant that owns Candy Crush Saga, one of the world’s most addictive mobile games at more than 2.7bn downloads, is being investigated by HM Revenue & Customs over tax avoidance.

And figures published have shown that the number of tourists visiting the UK from China has risen by almost a fifth this summer.  Travel data firm ForwardKeys said that summer flight bookings from long-haul markets were also 6% higher than in the same period last year. It credited the weakness of the pound for boosting tourists' spending power.


Cricket - England have got a battle on their hands to save the first Ashes Test, having been set 398 to win after a second Steve Smith century in the match on day four on Sunday. Today action in day five of the first Ashes Test starts at 11am French time.

Football - Manchester City won the Community Shield with a 5-4 penalty shootout victory over title-rivals Liverpool after a 1-1 draw at Wembley. Here’s more from BBC sport

Formula One – A delighted Lewis Hamilton said there is "no better feeling" than beating a "great driver" like Max Verstappen at the Hungarian Grand Prix, and hopes to have plenty more exciting wheel-to-wheel battles with the Dutchman. Hamilton and Verstappen, were locked in an epic duel throughout Sunday's captivating Budapest race.

Cycling - Italian Elia Viviani timed his sprint finish to perfection to capture the RideLondon-Surrey Classic at The Mall. Irish national champion Sam Bennett finished second, with Viviani's Danish team-mate Michael Morkov third.

Rugby Union - Former New Zealand captain and World Cup-winning coach Sir Brian Lochore has died aged 78, two months after being diagnosed with bowel cancer. An All Blacks player between 1964 and 1971, he made 68 appearances and captained his country on 46 occasions. A number eight and lock forward, he was knighted in 1999 and inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame.


Clear skies across the region with a moderate south westerly wind. Highs of 30 degrees in Antibes and Menton, 28 degrees in Nice and reaching up to 32 degrees inland in the Alpes Maritimes. For Saint Tropez highs of 31 degrees and 32 degrees in Rayol Canadel.

This evening going down to 16 degrees in the Var and 20 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes with clear skies.

The outlook for Tuesday temperatures remaining much the same some passing cloud in the morning with the possibility of some scattered showers inland in the Alpes Maritimes clearing by the afternoon.


An 11-year-old boy who hates video games and instead spends 20 hours a week playing with his chickens has triumphed at the world hen racing championships for the sixth year in a row.

Jack Allsop-Smith has been dubbed the “Lewis Hamilton of hen racing” after his bird “Cooked It” beat 50 others, including a hen belonging to his brother Joe, 4, to take the top spot.

Jack, who will start at secondary school next month, was egged on by about 600 spectators at the Barley Mow pub in Derbyshire at the weekend.

He steadied Cooked It, aged 5, on the start line before his grandfather John, who stood at the other end of the 70ft gravel track, coaxed her along by singing, “Chick chick chick chick…"

The world hen racing championship has taken place every august since 1992 but locals say the tradition dates back more than 100 years when farmers in the village would bet a penny and race their hens past a bucket.



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