Reparing the parasols for the summer season. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter


Storm Juliette made the beach one of the last places you would wish to find yourself. Having passed, she has been substituted by spring-like temperatures that - thanks to the nippy breezes at this time of the year - don’t necessarily make lolling around on the beach overly attractive but which nevertheless offer an anticipation of what is to come. And on Alcudia’s massive beach, the lolling can be on one of 3,800 sunloungers.

Covid times meant that the great stock of loungers and parasols weren’t all required, and so the town hall very kindly leant some to Manacor, who had decided to trial direct management of its beach services. Manacor was that delighted with the results - not having to worry about putting the services out to tender, for instance - that it opted to make the arrangement permanent. There are now two town halls in Mallorca who directly manage beach services; Alcudia was the first.

According to Alcudia, having “100% beach management (not including the balnearios, that is) guarantees quality and excellence”. Rather than contracting services out, maybe it does, but it certainly has advantages, all of them to do with not getting involved with the tendering procedure and then having to manage the contractors anyway.

Direct management implies a loss of potential revenue, but it’s not as if Alcudia can’t afford this, while there are certain employment benefits. Not all the workers for the beach services are taken on just for the season; some are employed the whole year. Each year, around 450 parasols are repaired. The work is by hand and involves disassembling them, removing all the threads and any broken rods, repainting the poles and then remaking the shades with reed. As well as the repair of parasols, a whole load of new sunloungers have been bought - 2,300 of them. And these will all be ready for when the season starts. The first of May will come around soon enough.

Meanwhile, just off the start of the beach in the port area, the Balearic Ports Authority is sticking to the promise made a month or so ago to do something about the bridge to nowhere on the promenade, which at present really does go nowhere, is in poor condition and is a safety risk. This is the ports authority’s responsibility. It was the authority who put it there in the first place. A tender for demolition - estimated value of 297,000 euros - has been raised, and bids have to be in by March 27.

SANTA MARGALIDA. MUSICA. Santa Margalida acoge el primer Festival Joan Ordinas Tous dedicado a su figura. La figura de Joan Ordinas Tous es el centro del festival.
Joan Ordinas was named an illustrious son in 1942.

The classical illustrious sons of Santa Margalida and Muro

There isn’t any new controversy regarding Franco’s banker, Joan March, and his status as an illustrious son of Santa Margalida. There is in fact no controversy, as everyone is happy that a different illustrious son - Joan Ordinas - now has a classical music festival named after him; an opening conference at the auditorium will be on Saturday.

Joan Ordinas was named an illustrious son in 1942 (fourteen years before March) and 43 years after he had died at the age of 59. A classical singer, he was a bass, he attained great fame in Europe; he also sang in the US. He acquired a nickname, ‘The King of Hells’, given the popularity and character of some of the operas he performed.

Santa Margalida therefore now has a music festival named after an illustrious son who was a classical musician, just as neighbours Muro have had one for many years - this year’s Miquel Tortell Festival is the twentieth. Nothing to do with the rivalries between the two municipalities, one trusts.

Plan of the train layout in Alcudia in 2008.

The election train now calling in Alcudia

Last weekend, Francina Armengol’s PSOE announced various things that are expected to be in the party’s election manifesto when it is finalised later this month. Transport, or what one must now refer to as sustainable mobility, featured among the announcement. As well as a promise to run the Palma tram to Calvia, there were other promises for initiatives elsewhere on the island. And guess what, one of them is the rail extension to Alcudia from Sa Pobla.

This will complement achievements thus far, none of them yet a reality except on paper, such as the Manacor to Arta railway, a project which is relatively straightforward given that the route, if not the tracks, already exists. The extension to Alcudia, on the other hand, is anything but straightforward. Had it been in the past, there might now be an extension.

While it is promised, the first step will be for agreement on the route, the lack of agreement having led to the abandonment of the project in 2009. So, good luck with ever getting agreement, Alcudia town hall right now being more inclined to have some sort of shuttle bus service to Sa Pobla instead.

Everyone knows that the obvious route would be by the road from the motorway. So obvious was it in 2009 that Son Fe landowners staged their tractor protest. Meanwhile, another option - by Albufera - is surely completely out of the question. Storm Juliette provoked flooding (again) and the closure of the road (again). Anything in the vicinity of Albufera and the Sant Miquel Torrent would seem to invite trouble.