French and Riviera News Wednesday 5th June 2019


Missing person - Police have appealed for any witnesses to come forward following the mysterious disappearance of the owner of a large shipyard in Cavalaire sur mer in the Var. The family alerted the authorities on Tuesday. Anyone with any information is invited to contact the police.

Fire fighters – Fire fighters of the Alpes de Haute Provence have requested urgent action to increase the number of professional firefighters in order to provide the service required. The union states that while the number of interventions have increased by 62% in the region there has been no increase in the number of staff and the current situation is putting citizens at risk.

Traffic jams - A recent survey has revealed that motorists in the region lost almost 6 days stuck in traffic jams in Nice in 2018. Nice is ranked 4th behind Paris, Marseille and Bordeaux for its level of congestion reaching 31%. Figures show that motorists lost 17 minutes stuck in traffic in the morning and 21 minutes in the evening with the worst level recorded on Tuesdays and Thursday at 8am and 5pm.

Meanwhile a new control system the FVA introduced on Tuesday will now allow police to identify motorists without insurance from their number plate. 700,000 French motorists take to the wheel without insurance. In 2018 30,873 people were involved in an accident involving a driver who was not covered by insurance.

No internet - Thousands of people have been left without any internet in the Var following a fire. The breakdown lasted for several hours on Tuesday evening with twenty technicians from the operator Orange being mobilized to repair the line.

Burglary network - Police in Marseille have dismantled a large burglary network. The local prosecutor said that the gang, from Eastern Europe, stole cash and jewellery throughout a wide area of the Mediterranean. 

Train network - Trains are due to be disrupted this weekend once again because of engineering works.  No trains will run between Aubagne and Cannes La Bocca from this coming Saturday at 1.20pm until next Monday afternoon at 2pm. Trains will run between Cannes and Ventimiglia and will also run between Marseille and Aubagne. You can get more details at local stations or at

Meanwhile hundreds of passengers travelling to Barcelona have been stuck in a tunnel for nearly six hours. The incident occurred on Tuesday in the Val de Marne region just outside Paris. According to reports a brief power cut paralysed five TGV’s in the area leaving one blocked in the tunnel. Despite several attempts to restart the train some 315 passengers found themselves deprived of electricity for up to six hours.

For sale - A villa which once belonged to the guitarist of Irish group U2 Adam Clayton has gone on the market. The house located in Grasse boasts a pool, guest house and large landscape garden. It was owned by Clayton for nearly eight years.

Wedding balloon - A retired couple from Draguignan had a pleasant surprise after discovering a wedding balloon which had come all the way from north eastern Switzerland. Eveline and Pierre spotted the white balloon as they opened their shutters in the morning.


Gérard Depardieu - French prosecutors have dropped an investigation into rape allegations made against French actor Gérard Depardieu. The 70-year-old had always denied the accusations, made by a young French actress last year. Mr Depardieu is one of France's most recognisable actors, and has starred in films such as Cyrano de Bergerac and Jean de Florette.

Crackdown - French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has announced a crackdown on the destruction of unsold or returned consumer products, a move that will affect luxury goods brands and online retailers such as Amazon. Edouard Philippe said a ban on destroying non-food goods – including clothes, electrical items, hygiene products and cosmetics – would come into force within the next four years. According to the Prime Minister’s office more than €650m worth of new consumer products were thrown away or destroyed every year in France.

Notre Dame - In Paris, pregnant women and children living near Notre-Dame cathedral have been advised to take blood tests over fears of lead contamination. The warning has been issued after tests showed a child from the Île de la Cité area of Paris had been exposed to lead. Authorities say that the blaze that broke out at the cathedral on April 15 released toxic substances into the air.

Football – French President Emmanuel Macron has welcomed the French men's football team and 2018 world champion’s to the Elysee Palace. The players were each given the Legion of Honor on Tuesday as Macron paid tribute to the work of the President of the French Football Federation, Noël Le Graët and the players.


The Chairman of the US Federal Reserve has said that the central bank will act “appropriately” to keep the economy growing.

Speaking on Tuesday ,Jerome Powell said that the Fed would be keeping a close watch on the fallout from a deepening set of disputes between the US and its largest trading partners.

Markets have interpreted the comments as a signal that Mr Powell is ready to cut interest rates if necessary.

Mr Powell was speaking in Chicago where he said that on “trade negotiations and other matters” “we do not know how or when these issues will be resolved”.

He said that the Fed was clearly monitoring the implications of these developments for the US economic outlook and would act appropriately to sustain development.


One of the City’s favourite fund managers is under increasing pressure after he took a decision to block investors from pulling cash from his flagship product.

Shares in Neil Woodford’s listed fund fell by as much as 20 percent in early London trading before recovering to close 7.2 percent lower at 71p per share.

Investors were spooked by the news on Monday that Mr Woodford had gated his Equity Income Fund,barring thousands of shareholders from pulling out their cash for at least 28 days.

He was forced to temporarily close the fund after a steady flow of investors pulling out cash turned into a flood.In May ,withdrawals topped 187 million pounds.

The size of the fund shrank to 3.7 billion pounds last month ,compared with a peak of 10.2 billion in May 2017.

The UK Financial Conduct Authority said that it was aware of the suspension and was in contact with Mr Woodford’s firm but declined to comment further.


And-Sir Philip Green has won the backing of the UK Pension Protection Fund for his plan to rescue the Arcadia Group ahead of a key vote today.

Sir Philip has struck a 385 million pound deal to secure Arcadia’s pension schemes which includes a 100 million pound from his wife Lady Christina Green who is the group’s largest shareholder.

The Pension Protection Fund has said that it will now vote in support of the restructuring plan.

The plan ,which still requires the approval of landlords would result in the closure of some 50 stores across the UK and would be carried out under a Company Voluntary Arrangement.


Tennis-Johanna Konta has become the first British woman to reach the last 4 of the French Open since Jo Durie in 1983.

The 28 year old made the semi-finals after beating Sloane Stephens 6-1 6-4 on Tuesday.She’ll now play Marketa Vondrousova for a place in the final.

In the men’s event Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal will meet in the semi finals.

Federer beat fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka in four sets while Nadal  beat Kei Nishikori in straight sets.

Cricket-Sri Lanka have beaten Afghanistan by 34 runs under the Duckworth Lewis Method in a rain affected World Cup match in Cardiff.

It’s the first match in the tournament to be affected by rain so far.

Today,India play South Africa  at The Oval.Play starts at 11.30 with South Africa in desperate need of a win having lost their opening two games.

Later ,New Zealand play Bangladesh in Southampton.Play starts at 2.30 this afternoon.

Football-The first semi-final in the Nations League is being played tonight.Portugal play Switzerland.

England play the Netherlands in the second-semi final tomorrow.

Boxing-Promoter Barry Hearn says that a rematch between Anthony Joshua and Andy Ruiz Jr will take place in either November or December.

Joshua lost his heavyweight crowns in a shock defeat to Ruiz in New York on Saturday night but a rematch had been written into the contract.

The venue for the fight is yet to be confirmed but it’s thought that Cardiff or Wembley are the most likely destinations.Hearn said that he couldn’t rule out the fight taking place somewhere outside the UK.


Clear skies with a moderate to strong easterly wind developing across the regin with gusts of up to 60 km/h .

Top temperatures 23-26 degrees.

Overnight lows of 18 degrees on the coast and 16 degrees inland with the chance of some scattered showers in the Alpes-Maritimes.

Thursday and Friday –Mainly  fine in coastal areas tomorrow,some showers inland.Partially cloudy across the region on Friday.Highs of 22-25 degrees.















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