MAY I in this space applaud the excellent documentary Paradise Lost on ITV this week. Many programmes have been made in recent years about Britons moving to Spain and their trials and tribulations. Usually, my sympathy level is relatively low. If you buy a bar or restaurant with little experience and without reading the small print then you are bound to have problems. But Paradise Lost highlighted the fate of a 14 British couples who had bought homes in Andalucia only to find that their new dwelling was illegal. The luxury houses had been built on rural land without planning permission (a practice common in Spain) but now the Junta of Andalucia had decided that the houses had to be demolished because they were illegal. Their owners had all the necessary paperwork and as far as they were concerned their houses were totally legal. The government of Andalucia was offering no compensation. They were told to find the builder and take legal action. No easy task. These were British people who had moved to Spain for a better life with their life savings only to find that they had been caught up in the Spanish property crash. Basically, there had no way to go. A disgraceful state of affairs and my heart goes out to these people. Simply scandalous.
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