….a quick glance at the latest local news with Caroline Manson

Céret school evacuated due to toxic fumes

beau soleil
Beau Soleil, Céret

Emergency services were called to the Beau Soleil agricultural high school in Céret on Friday morning when several students were overcome by the effects of toxic fumes.  They were taking part in a physics/chemistry lesson on the second floor of the building when around 20 of them began coughing and vomiting.  One of them was said to be in a very serious condition when emergency services arrived.  More than 70 firefighters, the SAMU, the Gendarmerie, the Préfecture, the Mayor and a rescue team specialising in chemical emergencies attended the scene and the entire school was evacuated.

Deputy Mayor assaulted

fly tipping

On Saturday afternoon, the first deputy mayor of Latour-de-France spotted two villagers dumping bulky items of furniture in the middle of the street.  When he helpfully pointed out that the déchetterie was actually open that day, he received a barrage of insults and finally a punch in the face.  The official has filed a complaint at the gendarmerie and according to the first elements of the investigation, the abuser had also been abusing alcohol on that day.

Man killed in Trouillas

A 32 year old man was found dead in the middle of a street early on Tuesday morning in the town of Trouillas.  The man had been stabbed several times.  A suspect has been arrested and taken into custody.

Three injured in car accident in Céret


Three people were injured on Thursday when a car and a van had a head on collision on Chemin de Sainte-Marguerite near Chateau d’Aubiry.  Such was the force of the impact that the car ended up on its roof.  The occupants, the 23 year old driver and the 18 year old passenger were able to get out of the vehicle before help arrived, but the young woman was suffering from chest trauma and abdominal pain, requiring that she was immediately transported to hospital.  The accident also destroyed a telegraph pole and underground cables meaning that there were network problems in Céret for several hours.

Prison sentence for drug dealers

andre slatkin

An investigation has shown that two men who were arrested trying to smuggle a kilo of heroin across the border in the boot of their car, are also resellers in France and Spain.  In court, they said that they were just coming to France to visit friends, and that a friend had asked them to transport the package in the car boot (which they thought was an aphrodisiac powder).  Evidence of text messages on their phones, such as ‘I want 25grammes, do you also have coke?’ and also statements from some of their ‘clients’ (including one who had even been asked to join their team), proved to the judge that they were guilty and they will now be spending several years in prison.

Man found dead near Ille-sur-Tet

Ille sur Têt

The mystery persists around the discovery of a lifeless body by walkers near the Orgues of Ille-sur-Tet.  The body appears to match the description of a 57 year old man reported missing by his family when he did not return from a bike ride.  An autopsy and DNA tests should shortly reveal the identity of the victim, but given the state in which the body was found, a murder investigation has been opened.

And finally…

barcelona beach

If you’re planning on spending any time on the beach at Barcelona, either take your cheque book or read this list carefully as the authorities are enforcing new, very strict regulations, with high fines:

  • Smoking – 30€ – All beaches are now non-smoking – smokers have to leave the sand to get to the promenade if they want a cigarette.
  • Sleeping – 500€ – Obviously this doesn’t apply to having a quick nap after lunch but it is to stop people sleeping on the beach overnight.
  • Washing your body – 500€ – A quick rinse-down under the public beach showers is fine, just don’t take your shampoo, body wash etc.  Apparently the same fine applies to people wanting to wash their clothes, whoever these people are!
  • Buying beers or mojitos from beach vendors – 500€ – The same fine that applied to these illegal sellers now also applies to the customers.  
  • Getting tattooed, styled or massaged – 500€ – Same rule as above – if the ‘professionals’ are liable to a fine, so are the clients.
  • Undressing on the beach 300 – 500€ – Apart from the Mar Bella beach, which has a naturist area, bathers are asked not to undress completely on the beach.  I assume that the ‘quick change under a towel’ is still permissible.  It is also forbidden to walk bare-chested or in swimsuits outside the beach areas.
  • Playing – 750€ – Beach volleyball and other sports must only be practiced in the spaces provided.  Hopefully this will put an end to the annoying clack clack sound of people playing with those plastic ping pong sets at the edge of the water!

Caroline Manson is an independent Property Consultant – for advice on buying, selling, renting or renovating, don’t hesitate to contact her at

Leave a Comment