Lunchtime News Tuesday 11th January 2022


A woman reported missing found dead after heavy rain hit the region near Toulouse - A woman reported missing on Monday, January 10 near Merville, north of Toulouse, has been found dead in a ditch filled with water, as heavy rains hit the region. The body of the 73-year-old victim was found 200 meters from her home. Her husband had raised the alarm, after she failed to return from a morning walk. During the day a dozen gendarmes and a helicopter had been deployed to search for her, she was found at nightfall. On Sunday evening, the department had been placed on maximum alert for rain and flooding.

Sexual predator handed one year prison sentence – According to local reports British national David Fretwell has been handed a one-year prison sentence after appearing on Monday, January 10 before the criminal court of Toulon by videoconference from the prison of Farlède. Born in 1950 in Chesterfield and known in the United State and Great Britain for sexual assaults on minors Fretwell recently reoffended in a supermarket in La Seyne-sur-mer. At the time already wanted by Interpol he will now serve his prison sentence in the Var.

Nursery school closes in Biot due to covid -  Meanwhile the Saint-Roch nursery school in Biot has closed its doors and suspended school transport. Faced with what it considers as "an unprecedented wave of covid" and "with regard to the positivity rate of teaching and municipal staff", the town council announced the closure of the establishment from  Monday January 10th to Friday January 14 inclusive.

However, local authorities have announced that children whose parents are considered priority workers (medical, para-medical, etc.) will exceptionally be accommodated in the Moulin-Neuf nursery school in Biot.

Petition against bypass project - A collective of associations have launched a petition against the project to bypass the ex-RN7 between Golfe-Juan and Antibes. After a demonstration in mid-December, the collective fighting against the project to bypass the ex-RN7 between Golfe-Juan and Antibes is launching an online petition. On January 9, nearly 2,600 signatures were collected.

Ramatuelle - Like many regional coastal towns, Ramatuelle in the Var will have to establish a projection on the evolution of rising waters over several decades and evolve its urban plan. During a recent council meeting, the elected representatives issued a favourable opinion on the inscription of Ramatuelle on the national list of municipalities "whose action in terms of urban planning and development policy must be adapted to hydro-sedimentary phenomena leading to the erosion of the coast".

Director of "Café de Paris" retires - The director of the legendary "Café de Paris" brasserie here in Monaco Stefano Brancato has retired. Brancato began his career at SBM forty two years ago. A familiar face to customers Stefano provided that little extra something to those that had the pleasure to meet him and will be greatly missed. His departure coincides with the temporary move of the Café de Paris to the Salle Empire whilst it undergoes renovation, planned to return to its iconic location in the spring of 2023.

Flights - The European Union has come under increasing pressure to further ease rules on flights to cut the number of "ghost flights" airlines are running. Airline company's say that the requirement for them to use 50% of their slots, down from 80% in pre-pandemic days, or lose them is forcing them to operate empty or half-empty flights.

Strike action at Brest airport - Strike action has been announced at the airport in Brest ahead of the arrival of 54 European ministers. A strike notice has been launched among air traffic controllers and engineers at Brest airport this Wednesday and Friday as European ministers meet for a summit. 54 European ministers are expected in the city during these two days for a summit on defense and diplomacy under the French presidency of the European Union.

Presidential elections - A survey carried out on 1,500 people by research company OpinionWay has given President Emmanuel Macron 25% of the vote in the first round of the French presidential elections with right wing Republican Valerie Pécresse and far fight National Rally Marine Le Pen both gaining 17%. According to the poll a second round between Macron and Pécresse would then see the president win 57% of the vote.

Meanwhile a new Tinder-style French phone application which matches users with the presidential candidate offering policies most similar to their own views has become the second most popular free app in France. Elyze allows its users to agree or disagree with policies linked to 15 presidential candidates. Based on the users' answers, the app then suggests which three candidates best represent their political beliefs.



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