The return of Carvalhal ; Table Tennis in focus ; Russian Ballet in town next week

Today’s photo thanks to Tom … "Funchal downtown hidden between two apartment buildings, a nice family of three, parents and baby. Testament of the love for children in Madeira and strong family value here".

madeira news blog 1003 tom statue

Tom also said : Russian Ballet is going to happen in Funchal on April 01 at the Congressional Centre. Tickets are for sale in the tourist info office @ 50 Euros each.

Thanks a lot to Elaine (East) for this web snippet :

Voyages of Christopher Columbus. A detailed account including the discovery of Madeira (excerpt from The Exploration of the World by Jules Verne online at ONLINE).

Many thanks to Paul for the table tennis contributions below :

Table tennis in Madeira. “Table tennis in Madeira, with its headquarters in Funchal, has made notable progress; nowadays there is an annual international tournament, an ITTF Junior Circuit event and Marcos Freitas is the islands leading light.”

Photo : Marcos Freitas, ranked 8th in the world as an under 21 player. Link to Marcos Freitas’ website: HERE

Tribute to Abilio Carvalho da Cruz in Funchal. “Recently, in Madeira Abilio Carvalho da Cruz was recognised for having contributed to no less than 50 years of unstinting work to the sport of table tennis. He has coached throughout the world, especially in Spanish speaking countries; wherever he has visited, his efforts have been appreciated.

He is a former winner of the Boys Singles event at the European Youth Championships; now a formidable force on the ITTF Pro Tour. Table tennis for Abilio da Cruz started at the age of nine as a player in Lisbon, he became the national champion, later the Technical Director and organised a series of programmes for schools and coaches. Later, he became a global traveller; his coaching exploits are a geography lesson.Furthermore, he has no intention of resting on his laurels.”

Planning for a new training centre in Madeira. He is involved with the planning for a new training centre in Madeira and especially is desirous of continuing to help countries in particular in Africa and Latin America. Link to ITTF News article

This weekends football : The big match of the weekend is here tonight, as Marítimo take on Sporting, both teams looking for points to secure a place in Europe next season. One talking point will be the return of Sporting manager, Carlos Carvalhal, who was sacked by Marítimo at the beginning of the current football season. SportTV1 8.15 pm. Nacional play away at Setúbal on Sunday at 4 pm, but it’s not televised. The big game is tomorrow, and that could decide the champions this season as Benfica host Braga.

Many thanks to Elaine once again for yesterday’s top news stories :

DIÁRIO 25/03/2010


Homeless and neglected. There are still people homeless in the high area of Lugar da Serra in the parish of Campanário. In the locality of Terreiros de Baixo, one house has disappeared, another is partially destroyed and the roof of the third has been damaged by a landslide. Two houses are situated below the road that leads to this isolated settlement in the hills. The seven occupants of one of these old houses have lived for more than a month in an annexe to their badly damaged property which is unfit for habitation. There is no water and the electricity supply is precarious as a street lamp has fallen onto the house. The owners of the uninhabited destroyed house live abroad and regularly come to Madeira. The woman living in the house with a damaged roof is frightened to return as she lives alone. They say they are forgotten about and without any support. The council has photographed the damage but has not returned or communicated. The farms have also disappeared. As time passes their hopes fades.

PS present alternative to Jardim’s PEC. The Madeiran socialists want an immediate debate on the PEC (Stability and Growth Programme) of José Sócrates, that Alberto Jardim has approved. They state that Jardim’s government has imposed higher taxes for businesses and households and a lower minimum wage than in other regions of the country. Other measures of the Regional Government are: transport costs are higher therefore penalise the economy and consumption of essential goods; unfair competition in the public / private sector; delays in payments to suppliers; absurd investments at high outlays with inadequate returns and a total absence of measures to promote the diversification of regional economy. They state that the negative measures of PEC need not be applied to Madeira as it is an autonomous region. The Socialist Party agree with some parts of PEC: tax on stock market speculation; tightening public investment; raising taxes on the banking sector and increasing taxes on income above 150,000 Euros.

The PSD will make available votes if the PS request them. The election of the Vice President of the Legislative Assembly of Madeira failed yesterday. The leader of the Socialist Party, Jacinto Serrão needed 24 votes out of 47. The PSD guaranteed 10 votes in favour as it is committed to a vice president from the opposition to avoid plurality. The opposition parties, mainly socialist, had to return 14 ‘yes’ votes in the election but the outcome was one vote short. This result means there is no-one elected at present, down to the internal politics of the Socialist Party. The Socialist Party must request more votes from the PSD but Jacinto Serrão said they will not do so, he will not be subject to a second vote and has appealed to Cavaco Silva to intervene. Monteiro Diniz, the Representative of the Republic said the Socialist Party must submit another candidate.


New houses will be built in at least two estates in Serra de Água. The Housing Association of Madeira (IHM) has ruled out the idea of building a single neighbourhood of 25 houses to relocate the families displaced by the storm of February 20th. A team of architects, an engineer and the Director of Heritage Services went to the area to assess two or three locations they have in mind. To place 25 houses in one location would have a high impact on the area and there are not many areas in Serra de Água that could support so many houses. Since this neighbourhood was badly battered by the storm, they have to be cautious. The families come from different locations so if they build at least two estates, they may be able to get near to the original areas. In the county of Ribeira Brava, the council hopes to rehouse the 17 homeless families by the end of the week. It is difficult to find accommodation to rent in Serra de Água, especially small units for the elderly.

Casa de Saúde de São João de Deus launches fundraising campaign. The Fundação São João de Deus which manages this hospital in Trapiche, is raising funds for those displaced by the storm who are still residing there. The campaign slogan is ‘Help us to help’ (‘Ajude-nos a ajudar’). Donations can be sent by cheque of postal order or through the Multibanco (Entidade 20952 e Referência 777 777 77) or bank transfer to NIB 0033 0000 4536 7133674 05. The hospital needs the following items delivered, either new or used: games and educational books for adolescents (10 years), blankets, pillows, sheets and towels, clothing and footwear (ladies sizes 36 to 40 and mens sizes 40 to 43). The 20 families temporarily housed in this institution are being helped by the army, Casa do Voluntário da RAM and Caritas. Their situation is managed by Social Security and Funchal Council.

Dog rescued had no chance of survival. The president of SPAD said the dog rescued on the 17th March in the vicinity of Palheiro Golf after about a month buried in debris, has been subject to euthanasia. The dog had lethal serious injuries, fractures to the limbs and lumbar spine, and a humane and dignified death was the only option. Several people were interested in adopting the dog but he would not survive. As a result of this case, there have been serious threats made over the phone to vets working at SPAD. One vet has had to stop working with the association. On the issue of overcrowding, the president said they house 200 animals but being confined in a small cage for a long period of time harms the quality of life. The adoption rate is 40%.


Aggregates pass through tourist area. Last week, for the third time this month, a boat carrying aggregates docked at Porto Moniz and unloaded thousands of cubic metres of sand. Half a dozen lorries were waiting and after loading drove off in the direction of São Vicente. The noise and pollution from unloading and transporting the inerts is affecting tourism. The Administration of the Regional Ports say it is an exceptional situation and the inerts are for the access road between Meia Légua and the tunnel da Encumeada. The town already has a paucity of tourists who are unhappy about this new ‘attraction’. Businessmen complain it is affecting trade and a councillor proposed compensation. The Mayor of Porto Moniz said he had been informed by the Ports Administration that this transport would occur and it is not illegal for lorries to use the roads in the centre of the village. He said it is favourable to the construction companies who are building houses in the northern region, as it is cheaper to transport by sea.


Taiwan gives 10,000 Euros. Taiwan gave a cheque for 10,000 Euros for Madeira to the Assembly of the Republic in Lisbon. It will be forwarded to Madeiran deputies (PSD, PS, CDS) who will then distribute the funds to institutions helping the victims of the storm. This ends a diplomatic embarrassment since Taiwan has no representation in Portugal. Lisbon did not want to upset China, that considers Taiwan as part of its sovereign territory, and did not want to offend the generosity of Taiwan. This solution took several weeks to formulate by the centrist deputy who is the President of the Committee of Foreign Affairs.

Today’s news headlines from the front page of the Diário de Notícias :

Dispute closes the petrol station on Porto Santo during Easter – If the retailer and supplier don’t settle in the meantime, the island will lose the main filling station. The current contract between the company that operates the petrol station, and the fuel supplier Galp, expires on 1st April, with neither party in a position to renew the contract. The dispute involves debt, obsolete and damaged equipment, and irregular opening times amongst other issues.

Today’s main news headline : Reported crime increased 5.4% on Madeira – The ratio for  reported crimes in the Region is 30 to 40 crimes per 1000 inhabitants. The annual report of the Internal Administration puts Madeira in ninth position for the districts with the most increased levels of crime in 2009. Last year nationally there was a decline of 1.2% in reported crime compared to 2008, but Madeira bucked the trend.

Waiting times for consultations wear out patients – On the Nacional Day, users blame the scarcity of family doctors but they praise the physicians and nursing staff.

Grievances : Storm used [as an excuse] to sack. The organisation that represents the trade unions of Madeira has received "many complaints", none yet been formalized, from workers who have lost their jobs since the storm of 20th February. Most cases come from the hotel and commerce sectors.

Party activists choose the 18th leader of the Social democrat Party – Regardless of the winner, President Jardim believes that everything will remain the same. Nearly 90 thousand PSD activists will be able to vote today for the new party leader to replace Manuela Ferreira Leite. There are only really, according to polls, two of the 4 candidates in the running, led by Passos Coelho and followed by Paulo Rangel. "What will happen, whoever wins, is that the party will continue in the same disorganised state of mind that it currently goes around in," considers Jardim.

The main sport headline today : Marítimo and Sporting tonight in atypical match – Carvalhal returns to Funchal in silence and with Izmailov in the entourage.

If anyone else can oblige with the translation of any of the ‘blank’ or sparsely filled headlines, or other news stories, here is the link. All contributions much appreciated. 

For anyone who has the Zon Box HD + DVR : Tobi has ‘had the man around from Zon’ (CaboTV) because his newish Zon box crashed and won’t record. I have had similar problems with mine, but not nearly as bad it seems. Zon are trying to fix the problem through automatic software updates, but the last attempt failed again, so no timescale yet for resolving. The man from Zon showed Tobi a workaround, and Tobi has kindly typed out the instructions for me, but it’s a bit lengthy to put on the blog if no one else has the problem. If anyone wants the ‘temporary fix’ instructions just email me and I will respond. If there are a lot of people with the problem then I will post the solution on the blog.

Don kindly sent in this link: SPAD FACEBOOK however it is mostly in Portuguese … you can follow the discussions about SPAD and the latest issues. Perhaps someone would like to post details about the ongoing story and ask for advice before doing anything too rash?

Top tip for UK folks … thanks to Paul : Top 10 late holiday deal of the week – March 28: Madeira! Head for Madeira and stay at the luxury five-star Madeira Regency Palace in Funchal for 414 pounds pp including seven nights’ b&b and flights from Gatwick leaving April 30.

Photo : A view of Funchal towards east from Pico da Cruz (261 m)

Full article in ‘the Mirror’ UK newspaper


If you can, please contribute something Madeira related. A funny story or good or bad experience, a news item, or a story from a Madeira newspaper, a teaser, news of a bargain flight or item in a supermarket. Please help keep this blog going … without user contributions it won’t survive. Please don’t send in automatic translations (like Google translator) without checking them through and correcting them first, thanks.

You can email [email protected] with any large contributions and other material.


Please use the comments here for general chit-chat, or feel free to ask any questions … someone usually has an answer.

If you post a comment and are not registered on this site (free), your comment will be moderated, so please do not waste time with spam postings.  If you register, your comment will be posted automatically. If you register, your email address will not be passed to any other party … promise!

Please don’t send in copyrighted material.

The headline news & other snippets reviewed here on the blog are mainly from the Diário de Notícias of Madeira, although news from any source is used and welcome.

The blogs in the ‘uncategorised’ category come from the old madeira4u blog.


Madeira News Blog © 2007 – 2010 All Rights Reserved

10 thoughts on “The return of Carvalhal ; Table Tennis in focus ; Russian Ballet in town next week”

  1. Re the neglected dog at Garajau, I have received another e-mail from Connie in UK to say that for five days up to yesterday her English friends next door report that no owner has been present and there has been no water, food or “social contact” other than what they themselves have provided. They are very concerned as to what will happen to the dog after today when they return to U.K. Tobi, do you know the exact address where the dog is? If so, perhaps the name of the owner is on the letter-box.
    Do you have a Portuguese-speaking friend who could ring Santa Cruz Police to find out what they are doing? In a case like this, there is no time to get court orders in order to break into this (empty?) flat. The dog will be dead long before legal procedures can be completed. Debs, even climbing over a wall to get onto premises is classed as “breaking in” – at least under British law. No actual force needs to be used. Perhaps the dog may be “lively” at times because the English visitors next door have been giving it some food and water. After today, they will not be there ….

  2. I will check again today sheila, and see if i can get someone to call police, i dont know exact address as the back of the apartments are on an alley way and this is where you can see it, the apartment next door has a dog so i will try and see if i can get people to come out and see if they know anything, and get the address.

  3. Remarkable efforts team, well done – just hope that you can get the “powers to be” to repond asap.
    Has anyone considered informing the “Diario”? Publicity and “press pressure” etc?
    Will ‘phone you shortly Sheila…

  4. Try that SPAD facebook link I have just posted at the bottom of today’s blog … maybe someone could advice?

    I have made a change in the posting requirements for comments, and a name and email (not published) are essential for posting. Neither has to be genuine if for some reason someone doesn’t want to known, but clearly I don’t divulge such info to others anyway. Best thing to do is be registered on the site. I need to do something to block the spam postings which are on the rise at the moment.

  5. One of Connie’s earlier e-mails about the dog at Garajau. The English visitors made their complaint at Santa Cruz Police Station on Tuesday this week.

    I am pleased to confirm that my friends have indeed contacted the police. They went to the police station in Santa Cruz today. They showed them some photographs and the police came with them to Garajau, saw the situation and told them they were going to interview some people. Language is a difficulty. So we don’t know what is going to happen next.

    So the police have seen the situation for themselves. Perhaps it would help, if your contact were willing to contact the police in Santa Cruz to find out what is going to happen next.

  6. The dog had lethal serious injuries, fractures to the limbs and lumbar spine, and a humane and dignified death was the only option.
    Oh well that’s OK then. If it had been a person with similar injuries then they would have been been put to sleep to eh? And how in this world is that dignified?

    As for the other dog in the garden. Stop talking about it and get round there a rescue the poor bugger. Climb over the wall get the dog and take it to SPAD. If it was a child nobody would think twice. What’s worse a dead dog or a ticking off by the police? Breaking in or gross neglect?

  7. Re “Dog rescued had no chance of survival”, it probably had broken back legs. Would it be able to half sit up with a broken spine? It probably was a quick decision by one of the vets as orthopaedic operations are complicated. There may not even be the expertise. Just to keep all the different size titanium screws and bits needed for the different size dogs would be extremely expensive and there are healty dogs coming in all the time and have to be put down because of lack of space and resources.

    But why not be honest about hese things? Why do we get these fairy tales? Why not tell the truth and stop people abandoning their dogs? Instead it is “only sick animals are euthanased. 40 % are adopted., etc. In 2008 of the 3247 animals that entered SPAD, 2114 were killed, 795 were adopted taking into account the ones that were returned. (Diário figures of 14. 1. 2009) Where is the arithmetic?

    Re the Garajau dog, once an official complaint form has been filled in, the police might act upon it. They will take it to SPAD. SPAD has to keep it until a court has decided whether it can go back to the owner, which it might until its starts all over again.


Leave a comment

Translate »