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Grazalema Information Centre (Sierra de Grazalema, Andalucia)

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Offline Jesus Contreras

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« Reply #20 on: September 22, 2011, 13:33 PM »
 :sign:
« Last Edit: September 22, 2011, 22:35 PM by Jesus Contreras »
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Offline Clive

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« Reply #21 on: September 22, 2011, 16:13 PM »
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Offline nick

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« Reply #22 on: September 22, 2011, 16:38 PM »
Clive and Sue, I am really sorry to hear about this. I can't imagine how infuriating it must feel to find so much work and effort about to be lost despite all your hard work. I can only hope that "ray of hope" is not that and they finally see sense that you are indeed doing a great and in fact an economical job for the local community.

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Offline parthenope

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« Reply #23 on: September 22, 2011, 19:45 PM »
Hi Clive,

As you know Lynn, Adam & I are absolutely gutted about the situation you find yourself in through a lack of support from the various official bodies that represent the community & environs that you are tying so hard to promote. It is an absolute scandal that so many "visitor centres" are being built at colossal costs only to be shut shortly after opening having been given no budget to sustain them. Absolutely ridiculous.

I also find it absolutely incredible that people will go into the centre, pick your brains for the valuable information that you so freely pass on and then leave without even buying a postcard. I know that I have encouraged people to pop in and see you to ask about the area, suggesting that they buy something in return, the fact that they haven't bothered with that last little courtesy makes me feel so embarrassed.

When ever I have called in to see you at the visitor centre I always leave in no doubt that it is one of the best facilities of it's type that I have come across anywhere, a small example being the availability of the best maps for exploring the surrounding, countryside vital if your serious about getting off the beaten track, you just don't get that very often elsewhere in Spain.

I know you have worked incredibly hard to make the place a success, and put together an excellent team to help you achieve that. I hope the people in control of the purse strings wake up to the gem that they have at the heart of the Natural Park before it's too late.

Words are cheap I know, but there are people out here who really do hope there is a way forward for the project

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Offline lisa

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« Reply #24 on: September 23, 2011, 07:39 AM »
Terrible news Clive. Would you have time to collect some signatures around the village and area in favour of keeping the centre open before the guy arrives? It also may be worth letting the EU know how the grants are being spent (through an MEP?) There may be some who care. Recently a delegation from the EU visited water treatment works near us due to complaints about them being funded but still not up and running. Just a thought. Meanwhile I'll get on to writing some words for you.
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Offline Clive

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« Reply #25 on: September 23, 2011, 10:27 AM »
Hi Lisa,

Half the village is for me and the other half don't understand why a guiri should get any help... Most of the businesses have signed an official escrito and formally entered into the ayuntamiento

I have already started the ball rolling at the EU fraud office and the cultur cad fraud is under investigation.  If nothing else it might get something done about this appalling waste of money... For everyone's information here is the link to the fraud office

http://ec.europa.eu/anti_fraud/index_en.html
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Offline Maria

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« Reply #26 on: September 23, 2011, 11:14 AM »
Hey Clive really sorry to hear about this. Spain is sometimes so short sighted its very frustrating. Im afraid I dont know any millionaires but should I come across one I will for sure point them in your direction. I hope when the vice president of the disputation of Cádiz comes to see you he can see what a great thing you are doing for the area, but like you say dont hold your breath, he is probably as corrupt as everyone else and only want to take the money from the "guiri" and not give any money back to help the future  :banghead:

Good luck, I really hope it works out for you.

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Offline timmyd

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« Reply #27 on: September 23, 2011, 12:07 PM »
I'm not familar with your centre or part of spain but if its any consolation I hear about similar things happening here in Galicia, for example the visitor centre in San Cibran de Las, celtic fortified village, never opened despite three years of construction and 100,000s of euro being spent.

Why? Because they could access the funds to build the thing but had no money after the three year period to employ someone to work there. I met the exhibition designer and he went back to service the audio visual stuff and the guy from the town hall said they havent even got the money to change the lightbulbs in the projectors. This happens all over Galicia and thats with very few tourists here and they can still access the money because its educational - I mean are anyones kinds really interested celtic ruins that rise to the grand height of two feet, I dont think so.

Anyway, I hope it works out - maybe if you have to close the doors you might get a bigger reaction and help from the community, local authority etc?
 Good luck, Tim.

Offline lucy

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« Reply #28 on: September 23, 2011, 13:10 PM »
Hi Clive and Sue,  Whatever happens you can at least feel proud to have created something of real value, however transitory it might turn out to be. From the comments I've read it sounds like you created a benchmark for Visitors Centres everywhere. The fact your team are ready to work for nothing says it all.  I can't believe people in charge of funds can be so short-sighted as to let your project go.  There seems to be a shocking inability to seriously invest in the future.

Let's keep hoping for a miracle.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2011, 17:48 PM by lucy »

Offline andyj

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« Reply #29 on: September 24, 2011, 11:49 AM »
Not much more I can add but just to register my sincere sorrow at this. It happens far too often with grant funding as there is plenty of cash for set up capital works but none for on going costs for the difficult first few years. I see too many projects collapse after the main project period is over. Trouble is the grant funders have hit there Target of X centres built or Y hectares of land in favourable management that they are not bothered about the project once the project had ended. there needs to be a different culture on how funding for large projects operate and pots of money available for continuation and maintenance. I have literally seen millions squandered. Anyway, ranting does not help anyone. Best of luck to you clive. Andy.

Offline Clive

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« Reply #30 on: September 24, 2011, 12:31 PM »
Thanks Andy and all....

keep those emails of protest coming please..... English or Spanish or German or whatever... The language is not important but the pile of letters I can slap on the town halls desk will help me a lot...

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Offline mick

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« Reply #31 on: September 26, 2011, 20:53 PM »
Hi Clive and Sue.

I  am very sorry to hear this bad news, I have obviously been aware that things have been difficult but always expected that at some point in the future the Town Hall and other organisations would pull their fingers out and sort the promised funding. I have been in to the centre on several occasions and found it to be an indispensable source of up to date information, books, local guides (with out which I would not have found many of the fantastic places in the area) and local artisan products (which Jayne liked very much).
I do not understand the mentality of the local Town Hall, businesses and people in not giving you all the support they can as up until the time you opened the centre there had been a woeful lack of information about one of the most fantastic areas in the whole of Andalucía. The old visitors centre on the main road was a waste of time, when it was open it had very little local information which was hard to access.
You not only provide the services in the centre but run several very professional web sites which pull people in from all over the world, what more do these people want.
I do hope that someone gives someone in the right place a good kick up the backside and that things start to sort themselves out very quickly for you both because the centre and your knowledge of the area will be greatly missed.

Mick and Jayne Richardson.

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Offline boosue

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« Reply #32 on: September 26, 2011, 21:01 PM »
Hi Clive and Sue


I am so sorry to hear about the information centre.  It would indeed be a great loss to everyone who visits Grazalema.  It is rare to find such a wealth of knowledge about the wildlife as you both have provided and worked on for so many years.  If there is any formal document to protest that requires my signature, I and JK would both be more than happy to sign it.

Offline Dave

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« Reply #33 on: September 27, 2011, 19:19 PM »
Hi Clive and Sue
I know I have not visited, but I too am very sorry to hear about the closure, especially after all you hard work and money.
All the best for the future
Regards
Dave

Offline Clive

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« Reply #34 on: November 04, 2011, 17:51 PM »
Hanging in there.......

Who is the "someone"............ Sounds intriguing.......

I'll post more news when i have it
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Offline Clive

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« Reply #35 on: December 04, 2011, 12:17 PM »
Hi Brenda, for the next exhibition launch, Saturday the 10th we will be open all day from 10 am to 7pm... The launch starts at 12pm and there will be a choir singing at 12.30 pm for about an hour.... The rest of the time (all year) we are open from 10am to 2pm then 3.30 pm until 7pm

I am unaware of any website of mine that has those hours 2pm till 5pm closed so i guess you have looked at some outdated site that ignore our updates.

Clive
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Offline Sue

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« Reply #36 on: December 04, 2011, 17:04 PM »
 it will be a good day out
:santa_afro:
« Last Edit: December 04, 2011, 17:09 PM by Sue »
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