Former Huddersfield gymnast and pub landlord Brian Hayhurst and his wife Elaine are ex-pats who have lived just outside Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol for 20 years. He writes a regular blog for Huddersfield Hub.

The unprecedented and unexpected Easter deluge boosted reservoir levels, reducing the risk of severe drought on the Costa del Sol – for the time being.

All regions of Spain are asked not to be complacent and conserve water where they can. The ever vocal Greenpeace is suggesting that 75% of the country could be at risk of desertification if there is not a reversal of climate change effects!

Well, whatever happens, people continue to flood to this beautiful country in greater numbers, although there are many tourists asking whether pools at their chosen holiday spot will be open for use.

As I write, the situation – which changes almost daily – is that hotels and some public pools will be available, but the use of pools at private villas and within communities are still being decided. The Andalusian government is leaving that decision to each local authority, causing much confusion.

I do hear that some families are considering alternative destinations if the advertised venue pools are not available.

And there have been many lively demonstrations by workers saying: “Without pools and gardens we are going to be ruined.”

I think governing bodies have to make quick but difficult decisions which will help families decide their holiday destinations and bear in mind that this coast relies heavily upon tourism.

As the temperatures are soaring now with beaches filling up, many restaurants have queues of people awaiting a table.

But there is uproar in Benalmadena with businesses calling for the town halls to fine people who purchase goods from illegal street vendors – so-called Looky Looky Men – who invade some eateries and sell to customers.

These business and shop owners say that they pay taxes and should have protection from these invaders who are often part of organised criminal gangs.

The abandoned Hipodromo racecourse

I have mentioned previously about the fate of the once much loved and enjoyed Hippodrome racecourse in Mijas.

This once vibrant recreation, sporting and entertainment complex with bars, restaurants and, of course, the racing attracted up to 7,000 punters into the early hours.

It has been closed for 10 years. There was a hope last year that it might be revived but now, although back in council ownership after bankruptcy, it’s future is most uncertain as vandals and looters have wrecked it.  The council says it will cost millions just to partially restore it.

The much-discussed rail link between Fuengirola and Marbella and beyond has been put on hold – again. The transport minister announced in Parliament that this rail link, although it could be a massive boost to the local economy, is “too expensive and complicated.” This is despite €600,000 having been pumped into various studies over the past five years.

READ MORE: Catch up on Brian back catalogue of blogs HERE

The golden visa has now ceased. This much sought after residential shortcut for foreigners, particularly wealthy property seekers with €500,000 to invest, has been halted.

There has been concern from estate agents, especially in places like Marbella, that the visa has pushed up house and villa prices out of reach of local people.

But there are still lots of people eager to purchase top level properties, although we have friends in the property sector who say there is a definite shortage of properties in all price ranges.

There are complaints from locals in such as Barcelona, Seville and parts of Mallorca who say too many people have come in from overseas and enough is enough.


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