Bill Webb has three full articulated lorries parked up at his Calvia depot waiting for the disruption in the Port of Calais to die down.
The removal industry has seen the strong pound turn its market on its head with some firms fully booked until August.Bill Webb, who owns Webbs International Removals said that business is “banging” although on going chaos and disruptions in the Port of Calais is not helping.
“I’ve got three articulated lorries parked up at the Majorcan depot which are running 24 hours behind schedule because of the lock down in Calais.
“I don’t want my lorries any where near Calais under these circumstances, I’d rather have the lads working here,” he said yesterday as news broke of another 48 hours of disruption being planned to begin tomorrow at midday.
“I don’t care, the boys will set off tomorrow, we always use the night ferries out of Calais, so I think we should be all right,” he added.
“But, with France now on official holiday mode, lorries weighing over 3.5 tons are not allowed on the roads on Saturday, so we need to get into port and on a ferry Friday night,” Bill explained.
Nevertheless, it is not the UK bound business which is “banging” this year, it is very much in the opposite direction.
“We are fully booked until August with clients still calling. With the pound being so strong against the euro and little signs of it losing any significant value at the moment, we have witnessed a surge in demand for Majorcan properties this year.
“Mid recession, a lot of Britons were returning to the UK or moving elsewhere in Europe, even the mainland because of the cost of living, but now, those who can, it appears that there are plenty of Britons who can, are cashing in on the weak euro and buying up properties in Majorca.
“And, the majority, are relocating to the island as opposed to buying holiday homes,” Bill added.
“What is more, Britons are buying all over the island. Obviously Calvia continues to be popular but we’ve noticed a significant demand for properties in the Port of Soller, Soller town and Deya, for example, but they are buying up all over the island,” Bill added.
“On the flip side, there are also those who have been hit hard by the weak euro and are having to move back to the UK, but the vast majority of our business this year is moving people out to Majorca and I can’t see any let up in the near future.
“What we are taking back, however, are Spanish goods bought on line with UK credit cards.
“It’s ironic a few years ago, people living here were buying their furniture and domestic items on line in the UK for us to ship out, now it is the other way round, people really are making the most of the financial situation, coming into Majorca from the UK, people are 30 percent better off,” Bill said.
“People are even buying water sports equipment and the likes....
“But, right now we’re having to try and get through Calais with the minimum of delay and disruption but it is not easy.
“We’re 24 hours behind schedule as it is and all the delays are going to have a knock on effect, so, my drivers will have to make the most of the situation when they get to Calais. But he was not best pleased by yesterday’s news.Ferry workers will disrupt traffic through the sub-sea Channel tunnel between France and Britain for 48 hours from midday tomorrow, a union official said.
“We will pursue our actions to make the French government budge,” said union official Eric Vercoutre, speaking at the French Calais port town where the tunnel entrance is located.
“From midday Thursday we will carry out actions disrupting the tunnel,” he said, adding that action should last 48 hours.
Workers at ferry service MyFerryLink are trying to prevent job cuts after their company was sold to a Danish firm earlier this month.