AND HERE IS THE NEWS…
….a quick glance at the latest local news with Caroline Manson
Shopping centres to close
Following Friday’s announcement regarding the latest Covid restrictions, shops in 5 commercial shopping centres in the department will be temporarily closed, from Sunday. These centres are Carrefour Claira and Chateau Roussillon (the outdoor shopping remains open), Leclerc (Polygone Nord and Sud), and Auchan Porte d’Espagne. Only the supermarkets and bakeries/pharmacies can remain open. This is to allow a new health zone of 1 customer per 10m2.
Demonstrations turn into ‘rave’ party
#Covid #Perpignan rave party en plein centre ville de Perpignan. Les teuffeurs défilent et dansent dans la rue pour dénoncer notamment les restrictions imposées par le gouvernement depuis le début de la crise sanitaire pic.twitter.com/O8eGO7qpvC
— Seb Berriot (@SBerriot) January 30, 2021
An authorised manifestation at the foot of Le Castillet in Perpignan soon got out of hand when, after marching through the streets the 200 protestors set up a loud sound system and it turned into what was described as a ‘rave’ party. Despite the fact that there was no effort at social distancing and many were not wearing masks, the police did not intervene, and the group dispersed at 6pm.
Body found in Canet
Agents responsible for mosquito control in the marshes near Pont des Basses made the macabre discovery of a lifeless body. It was said to have been in the water for some considerable time and an investigation is underway to identify the corpse – but it could well be the body of a 78 year old man who had been missing from Canet since the end of 2019.
Hunters fall ill after eating sanglier meat
Two inhabitants of the Vallespir were infected by trichinellosis, a parasitic disease caused by eating undercooked wild boar meat. The symptoms are similar to the onset of flu, but quickly become much more severe. There have only been 30 cases in the last 10 years but according to the ministry of health the infestation seems to be more and more frequent in wild boars in Andorra and Catalonia. Authorities recommend cooking the meat thoroughly – at least at 71°C.
Perpignan water disruptions
Residents may have noticed the presence of air, or discoloured water in the pipes recently – this was due to a major leak in the main supply pipe of the city at the level of the prison. Veolia worked round the clock to isolate the leak and to provide three relief boreholes to continue to supply the city with drinking water, and they say normal service will be resumed as soon as possible.
Wolves escape from EcoZonia park
Four wolves escaped from the new animal park, due to open next month in Cases-de-Pène. Sadly two of them were tracked and killed but 2 others are still missing and it could take several weeks to find them. These wolves, bred in captivity, are considered ‘domesticated’ wolves so while they ‘should not’ attack humans, it is important to ensure that they do not reproduce in the wild and create a mixture between species. The park will not be allowed to open, or introduce any new animals, until an enquiry has taken place.
Cigarette smugglers fail
You really must be ‘desperate for a cigarette’ if you consider it worth crossing the border between Andorra and the P-O in the middle of the night in deep snow, but this is what 25 traffickers tried to do. They were surprised to find customs officers up there so fled, leaving their backpacks, which contained 352 kilos of cigarettes (17,600 packets with a value of €176,000).
Yellow Train derailed
In a rare accident the Yellow Train derailed in full descent at the exit of the tunnel near Fontpédrouse. The train came completely off its tracks before coming to a stop. There were no passengers at the time, just the driver and the controller, who were not injured but the controller had to be transported by fire-fighters to the Saint-Michel clinic in Prades in a state of shock.
Perpignan is in the top 10 in a restaurant ranking website. Unfortunately it is the “2021 Junk Food Ranking”, a study based on the number of fast food restaurants per inhabitant in major cities in France! This year Perpignan has ‘beaten’ Montpellier (14th) and Toulouse (17th) but it is an improvement on last year when we occupied 7th place. The winning slot goes to Bordeaux with an average of one fast-food restaurant per 5,000 inhabitants.