Christmas lights. More seafront work?

Christmas lights turned on

Christmas lights in FunchalThe Christmas lights have been going up in Funchal over the last few weeks and were duly turned on last night to welcome the many visitors expected over the festive period. A total of €3.2 million will be spent in Funchal this year with the Christmas lights costing €1.5 million and €800,000 being spent on the New Year’s Eve firework display. In total the  spend is down €500,000 on last year. The Christmas lights, with more than 600,000 light-bulbs being illuminated, will remain in place until January 8th.

Poor weather continues

The unusually indifferent weather continues, with more wind and rain overnight, including some spectacular sheet lightning out towards the Desertas around 7.00 this morning. A weather warning has been issued by the Port of Funchal for most of today, with waves much stronger than usual. The Portuguese Met Office reported that overnight almost 35 litres of rain fell per square metre in an hour at the weather station at Pico do Areeiro.

Further seafront development investigated

Funchal seafront

Last Sunday’s Diario led with the story that €7.5 million will be spent over the next three years on investigating the possibility of further developing the port and seafront in Funchal. A series of reports are expected to emerge, presumably including the possibility of further extending the main docking “arm” to provide further protection for the new facilities completed last year including the controversial “Pier 8” which has encountered problems since being commissioned – previous posts

TAP office move

Old TAP office in FunchalYesterday saw the offices of TAP in Funchal move about 500 metres from their high-profile seafront location to Rua da Alfândega. Not much news on TAP nowadays after their problems were reportedly resolved by the buy-out last year -, but this looks like a bit of a cost-cutting exercise, although one questions the need for plush offices when most bookings will be on-line.

Big day for Europe

Italian referendum headline from Independent

Sunday is decision day in Italy, with Prime Minister Matteo Renzi threatening to resign if his constitutional reforms are not accepted. Rejection would lead to a new election with a “populist” vote possibly backing a party in favour of a referendum on EU membership. This would really spook the markets as, with €360 billion of bad debt on their books, Italian banks could be in serious trouble – they hold 40% of the total EU bad debt, and capital is leaving the country at  an alarming rate. The repercussions for all of Europe could be considerable, even though the majority of Italians are believed to be pro-European. Opinion polls showed a close-call before a blackout prior to the vote.

English Church Christmas Fair

English Charch in Funchal

The English Church are holding a Christmas Fair tomorrow (Sat) 10.30 – 15.00. Free admission.

Update: World’s Leading Island Destination – again!

Tonight saw the Madeira Islands voted the World’s Leading Island Destination for the second consecutive year.

leading-island-destination

13 thoughts on “Christmas lights. More seafront work?”

  1. There was discussion some time ago about the potential for the ferry service from Portugal to return to Madeira. Is there any further information available about this service?

    We have an Apartment in Madeira and we have recently bought a Motorhome in the UK, we would love to travel through Europe and then bring it for an extended stay in Madeira, Any information would be much appreciated.

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  2. I have problems in posting anything on this blog it accepts it but I never see my comments printed. The main issue is the closure of the Regency Palace and I have suggested that our local UK MEP’s might like to earn their keep by being asked to investigate this fraud which seems to be supported by the Madeira Legal system.

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  3. Mary – the President on his election, promised that he would do his best to reintroduce the ferry but talks broke down, I understand because of those who operate the harbour areas. It is a real shame but it is not likely as things stand at the moment.

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  4. “35 litres of rain fell per square metre in an hour at the weather station at Pico do Areeiro”

    It seems that someone has exagerated or mistranslated here.

    Friday (yesterday) night the Diário reports even heavier rain : “Ontem à noite, entre as 20 e as 24 horas, a quantidade de precipitação na estacão do Pico Areeiro voltou a atingir níveis de aviso vermelho – 61 litros por m2 em apenas 4 horas”

    Same place, but 61 litres per square metre in 4 hours … and that exceeds the limit for a red warning.

    The reason that the ferry situation has not been resolved is because the central government does not want to pay the subsidy necessary to make a ferry a viable operation.

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  5. Thanks Joanne and Jorge for your response to my query, Hopefully common sense will prevail in the end and Madeira will have all the transportation links it deserves.

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  6. Jorge gives a very positive feel to the responsability of the local government. That government plays in the same league as the Sousas who operate the container transport facilities in Canico. And its the Sousas that finance greatly the political party of….. yes… Alberquerque ! Also due to preposterous harbour fees, who’se operators are also in the pocket of the same Sousas, it is not profitable to operate a ferry anymore as we had in the days of Armas. It is all about monopolism, money and power. And they don’t give a fig about the inhabitants of Madeira, and their need to have a reasonable payable possibilitie to get on the mainland by car, or have loads of cooler container food in the supermarkets. They also do not want to miss the 20 something container-ships full of Madeira bananas shipped to the mainland. Oh no…….
    If you want to follow the discussions on the web about this matter there’s a Facebook group that gathers a lot of information: https://www.facebook.com/groups/342217922562133/

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  7. I guess most people don’t know the real reason why suddenly Madeira is picking up “best island” awards like never before.

    Page 7 in Sunday´s Diário gives what is clearly the true reason, so sorry to shatter the illusion of the above bloggers. I will just quote one sentence from the article …..

    “The request to vote (for Madeira) on the facebook page of the player reached 39 million people in 5 months”

    No need to mention names I guess.

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  8. With thanks in advance:
    I shall be grateful if anyone can advise the details of the Santa Cruz ‘ St Amaro’ festival this January as it is an occasion we have been lucky enough to be on for our annual visits in the past but can’t find much about so far this year

    Reply

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