French and Riviera News Wednesday 20th July 2022

News

Forest fires - After several days of fighting the flames in the Gironde southwestern France, authorities noted a “glimmer of hope” on Tuesday evening as the flames appeared to ease. French President Emmanuel Macron is due to visit the region today Wednesday 20th July accompanied by France’s Interior Minister. According to the latest report just over 20,000 hectares of forest land have been destroyed and 34,000 people residents and holidaymakers have been evacuated. However, thanks to the significant land and air resources involved including 2,000 firefighters and 8 Canadairs, the progression of the fires was reportedly limited by Tuesday evening. No serious injuries were reported, but one firefighter was injured. The smell of smoke driven by the wind, were felt overnight from Monday to Tuesday in Bordeaux and further north, as far as Paris in the evening. The man placed in police custody as part of the investigation into the fires, a 39-year-old from the region has had his police custody extended. He is reportedly already known to authorities.

Three violent thefts of luxury watches in Cannes in less than 48 hours - Police in Cannes have warned the public to be extra vigilant following three violent thefts of luxury watches in less than 48 hours. The first was committed on Sunday in the town centre when a Chinese tourist had his watch, valued at 400,000 euros, brutally snatched from his wrist. The second incident occurred on Monday evening at around midnight on the Boulevard Georges-Clemenceau, for a watch estimated to be worth 30,000 euros and a third robbery was carried out on Tuesday evening at around 6.30pm at La Bocca when the owner of an Omega watch worth 5,000 euros was beaten before being robbed. With an increase in the number of incidents occurring in the middle of the street and in some cases, in broad daylight, police have called for caution when wearing precious jewellery in the city.  An investigation is underway no arrests have yet been made.  

Marine pollution alert lifted - A marine pollution alert in Nice implemented as a precaution has been lifted. On Monday authorities evacuated swimmers from the sea in front of two beaches, the Centenaire and the Beau Rivage, following reports of an oil pollution. On Tuesday swimmers were able to return to the water after samples taken proved to be reassuring.

Alpes Maritimes placed on weather warning on Tuesday evening - Following an orange heat wave alert in the Alpes-Maritimes the region found itself placed on a yellow weather alert on Tuesday evening with storms forecast inland. The warning was issued by Météo France after a violent storm hit the hinterland on Monday in the town of Saint-Martin d’Entraunes seeinga dramatic and sudden drop in temperatures. The warning was lifted at 9.30pm on Tuesday.

Sites open to the public in Antibes closed due to dry weather - Meanwhile due to the extremely dry conditions the Villa Eilenroc in Antibes has been closed to the public until August 13th. The villa which is normally open on Wednesdays and Saturdays is one of several sites closed by the city council due to the weather. The Bois de la Garoupe, Fort Carré and Semboules, as well as the Albany park in Juan-les-Pins have all suffered the same fate. However, is should be noted that the nature walks organised in the Bois de la Garoupe on July 21st and 28th and August 2nd will still go ahead as planned as will the storytelling evenings on July 22nd, 29th and August 5th and 12th.

Wild boar spotted in Nice - A wild boar has been spotted in Nice near the Paillon River. The animal spotted outside of its normal surroundings was seen wandering between the Guillaume-Apollinaire high school and the exhibition centre, to the east of the city. It’s not the first time that a wild boar has been spotted in the city previous sightings have also been reported in Cimiez, on the Promenade des Anglais, in Saint-Roch and Parc-Impérial.  Over the past five years, the population of wild boars in France has grown to around two million and they are getting closer and closer to urban areas.

Online restaurant reservation platform offers discounts in a selection of restaurants in Nice - The online restaurant reservation platform “The Fork” has published its list of establishments in Nice where customers can benefit from reductions on the menu of up to -50%. Whether you are visiting or live here the opportunity to eat out without breaking the bank is more than welcome and now if you book through the French platform “The Fork” before September 4th, you can benefit from reductions of -50% on the menu in a selection of restaurants in the Riviera capital.

Redheads in the UK have been offered free access to the movies - In the United Kingdom, redheads have been able to go to the cinema for free to better withstand the heat wave. Impossible to escape, the heat wave is in full swing, and not only in France. To cope with this intense heat wave, the Showcase cinema chain in the United Kingdom offered on Monday July 18 and Tuesday July 19, a cinema ticket to redheaded customers. The Showcase cinema chain says it relied on a study that showed that redheads are more sensitive to heat.

EuroMillions jackpot won in the UK  - Finally the EuroMillions jackpot of 230 million euros has been won in the UK. The winning numbers for Tuesday nights draw were: 6, 23, 27, 40 and 41. And the lucky numbers: 2 and 12.

Business

An American judge has set the start of Twitter's trial against Elon Musk in October for five days, granting the social network's request for a quick procedure. The platform launched lawsuits last week against the boss of Tesla and SpaceX, to force him to honour his commitment to acquire Twitter for 44 billion dollars. Twitter had requested an accelerated procedure, from September, so as not to prolong the period of uncertainty which partially paralyzes the company.

The Carrefour retail group has signed an agreement to sell its business in Taiwan to Uni-President, its "long-time partner and co-shareholder" on the Asian island. This sale of 60% of Carrefour Taiwan, which must "be effective by mid-2023", values ​​the entity "on the basis of an enterprise value of 2 billion euros". Carrefour says it has achieved in Taiwan in 2021 a turnover excluding tax of 2.5 billion euros. The operation should generate a capital gain for Carrefour of approximately 0.9 billion euros. Previously present in China since 1995, Carrefour arrived in Taiwan in 1987 through a joint venture with Uni-Président.

Netflix lost almost 1m subscribers between April and July, as the number of people quitting the service accelerated. The company reported its first subscriber loss since 2011 in April, news that was followed by hundreds of job cuts. Rivals are challenging its dominance, while price hikes have taken a toll.

According to the specialized media CoinDesk the French bank BNP Paribas, through its asset custody subsidiary BNP Paribas Securities Services has partnered with the Swiss cryptocurrency custody specialist Metaco which specialises in the conversion of cryptocurrencies. CoinDesk claims the bank should offer a cryptocurrency custody service, a service made possible thanks to the partnership with the Swiss company. At this stage, neither BNP Paribas nor Metaco have published an official press release on this subject. According to French media reports BNP Paribas Securities Services will communicate on the partnership later today.

Sport

Athletics - Britain's Jake Wightman produced a stunning run to take 1500m gold at the World Championships in Oregon. The 28-year-old clinched the title in three minutes 29.23. Wightman looked stunned as he crossed the line in a world-leading time. He is the first British man to win the world 1500m title since Steve Cram in 1983.

Cricket - Ben Stokes' final one-day international ended in another England defeat as South Africa won a sweltering series opener by 62 runs. Stokes, who announced on Monday that this match on his home ground would be his last 50-over international, was out lbw for five. Victory gives South Africa a 1-0 series lead going into the second match on Friday at Emirates Old Trafford.

Tour de France - Canada's Hugo Houle claimed his first Tour de France stage win with a brilliant solo ride to victory in Foix. The 31-year-old Israel-Premier Tech rider became the first Canadian to win on the Tour since Steve Bauer in 1988.

Tennis - Russian tennis player Daria Kasatkina has criticised her country's attitude to homosexuality after coming out as gay and also called for an end to the war in Ukraine. Kasatkina, the world number 12, reached the French Open semi-finals last month.

Weather

Mostly sunny and very warm with highs of 32 degrees in the Alpes Maritimes. 34 degrees in the Var with a gentle breeze. This evening going down to 24 degrees with clear skies.

Outlook for Thursday and Friday fine highs of between 32-34 degrees.

Sea temperature     22 degrees       UV level   9

Sunrise              06.06hr                       Sunset      21.06hr

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