UK protests over Gibraltar shooting

UK protests over Gibraltar shooting

Don’t panic it’s not as dramatic as it sounds.


The BBC news headline makes it sound as if citizens of the UK are taking to the streets of London, Birmingham and all major cities in defence of Gibraltar.  No such luck, it’s just the Europe Minister David Lidington, but bless him at least he’s speaking up.

If only schools back in the UK had Gibraltar as a large part, or even small of the curriculum then maybe everyone back home would appreciate the issues.  Well we can only hope that maybe one day Gibraltar will become as familiar word as Sussex or Essex to those back in the UK.

In the meantime the BBC reported:

Britain has protested in the “strongest terms” after an “illegal incursion” by a Spanish Guardia Civil vessel into British waters around Gibraltar.

Europe Minister David Lidington said a Spanish officer had fired a weapon during the incident on Sunday.

He said he had sought assurances from Spain that there would be no repeat of the incident.

Spain disputes Gibraltar’s sovereignty, which has been a British colony since 1713.

In a statement, Mr Lidington said: “I spoke today with Spanish minister for the European Union, Inigo Mendez de Vigo, in order to protest in the strongest terms following an incident on 23 June in British Gibraltar Territorial Waters (BGTW).

“During an illegal incursion by a Guardia Civil vessel, a Guardia Civil officer fired a weapon.

“I made clear that the discharge of a weapon in or near Gibraltar is completely unacceptable. I urged Senor Mendez de Vigo to investigate urgently and to take action to ensure that this will not happen again.

“I can also confirm that I have instructed the chargé d’affaires in Madrid to reiterate this protest in person to the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and to request a full explanation.”

In 2012, Gibraltar and Spain clashed over fishing rights around the territory. Gibraltar police boats confronted several Spanish trawlers after they cast their nets near Gibraltar harbour.

Perhaps if the media in the UK could offer the people of Britain a truly gripping insight into real life in Gibraltar then the people back home would understand and appreciate us.  All very well for light hearted programs such as Britain in the Sun, following a handful of privileged cranks who finish work at 2.30pm (unlike the rest of us here in Gib), but Gibraltar has so much more about her than that.  We admit it is a start to raise awareness of our existence, but do we really need ‘The only way is Gib’ because a lot of the issues are no laughing matter.

John Middleton –

World Trade Centre Gibraltar

World Trade Centre Gibraltar

For all the latest developments and news on the new WTC Gibraltar

 A new WTC is to be built here in Gibraltar, and not so far away now.  Gibraltar has made leaps and bounds in the last 12 months, with EU recognition now on the world stage of finance and with major new office development.
World Trade Centre

Companies can come and register in Gibraltar and trade throughout the European Union.  What Gibraltar has lacked, up until now, is physical infrastructure, that physical infrastructure is now becoming a reality and Gibraltar is soon to be the new home of the new World Trade Centre.

Now that’s impressive!

John Middleton –

Gibraltar: Britain in the Sun – review

Gibraltar: Britain in the Sun – review

An eight part fly-on-the-wall, lighthearted documentary on life in Gibraltar.  Visiting varying walks of life, from Dr Eric Shaw, who affectionately looks after the apes, to the friendly Gibraltarian policemen, lifeguards and a particularly cuddly couple of jolly boys.

For those who already know or live on the rock it’s a fascinating watch, but not so sure for those who’ve never been before.  Even with the colourful editing it’s a little slow moving in pace, editorially speaking, with long shots and unnecessarily drawn out story lines, or lack of them.

eric shaw

Eric Shaw is definately the star of the show, an absolute natural in front of the camera, at ease with his animal friends, a man who comes across as relaxed and friendly, no airs and graces, just a plain old down to earth guy.  What’s not to love there?

Then there’s the ‘Jolly Boys’ Shane Athey and Tony Watkins of Dive Charters.  Just a couple of lads messing around on boats.  Running the local dive centre in Gibraltar, these two come across as playful, harmless jokers just soaking up the sun and having a bit of a laugh.  But unlike Eric Shaw, who’s daily routine, out of the oridinary, has a certain interest, there is a lack of understanding of exactly what the point is in hearing about a couple of lads having a good time in the sun.

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Aside from frollicking around on expensive boats and playing with torpedocams, Tony and Shane of Dive Charters are also contracted by local Marina Bay and Ocean Village Gibraltar (soon to house the new Sunborn superyacht floatel), to conduct underwater maintenance on the moorings and keep all the sailors sleeping safe in their bunks.  But does that run anymore smoothly than their boyish Laurel and Hardy antics?  Or is it just another Jolly Boy cock up?  In the words of Tony Watkins, when reviewing his video footage, ‘To be honest I don’t think it could get an awful lot worse.’

Well that’s another story coming soon …

Written by John Middleton –

Smuggling in the Strait of Gibraltar

Smuggling in the Strait of Gibraltar

It happens all the time by high powered speed boats and jet ski’s, one example is the film below which looks more like something out of an action film than reality, but is in actual fact a typical smuggling chase with the police.


Well if you do come to Gibraltar for some duty free fags or diamonds don’t forget to fuel up the jetski on cheap gas while you’re here.

Good luck

Coming soon … interview with a smuggler

by John Middleton –

Sunborn Gibraltar photos and specifications

Sunborn Gibraltar photos and specifications

All images below of the Sunborn are available on the Gibraltar Government Website information services and are in the public domain, please refer to the link below.

Direct from the Gibraltar development projects planning department – wonder what she looks like inside?  Some answers below:

Red indicates official and exclusive press release from Sunborn:

Is it really the only one in the world?

Sunborn has had yacht hotels in London and Finland, but this is the first self-propelled one of five star status.  Sunborn Gibraltar will, for some time, be the only five star yacht hotel in the world.  However, Sunborn has expansion plans for other iconic cities in the world and more will follow in due course, but not immediately!

This is huge for Gibraltar as this will, for the time being, be the only destination in the world where clients can experience a five star floatel.

Is it accurate that the Sunborn will arrive in Gibraltar in 14 days?

There or thereabouts, maybe slightly earlier, but straight into Gibdock for the commissioning process.

sunborn construction 1

Pictures of the Gibraltar Sunborn super yacht hotel destined for Ocean Village Marina Bay, in the boatyard Malaysia.  Photos presented by Sunborn company for planning application.

Where is it sailing from?

The shipyard that Sunborn owns in Malaysia.

sunborn construction 2

 Is it self propelled?

She can be, she does have engines, but is not designed for cruising as the fuel tanks are small etc

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 And can it’s progress be tracked on the shipping satellites?

No, her radar is not on as she is on a yacht transportation vessel to protect Sunborn Gibraltar throughout the long crossing – and to get her here faster.

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 How soon do you think any tantalising interior photos will be ready? are keeping this one under wraps at the moment so you’ll just have to wait and see …..

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 Is any of the interior decor inspired by any famous designers?

Again, for now are keeping the secrets of Sunborn safe, but we’ve been given some big hotel design names, all to be revealed in due course.  One clue we can give is that some top designers of luxury hotels and royal palaces have been commissioned.

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 Do you have a celebrity lined up for the christening and if so any clues as to who?

Nothing to reveal at this stage.

Guess’s, suggestions, ideas anyone!  Will Sunborn bring an international celeb to Gibraltar for the opening?  Who would you like to see?

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John Middleton –

Sunborn Gibraltar

Sunborn Gibraltar

7th June 2013 – update official photos and specifications of the new Sunborn headed for Gibraltar – Ocean Village / Marina Bay here directly from Gibraltar planning department.

nerves are fraught over the anticipated arrival of the new Sunborn to Gibraltar, not only from the directors and CEO’s of the company

Gibraltar is expectantly waiting for the arrival of the new Sunborn Floatel, a classy five star floater, real James Bond style material, promising a bright new future for young aspiring Gibraltarians.

But where is she in transit?  Where is she coming from?  Where are the photos?

Boasted as a mass employer and boost to Gibraltar’s economy, we all await the arrival of the Sunborn Yacht Fixed Floating Hotel at Ocean Village/ Marina Bay with bated breath.

Sunborn is due to make her debut in Gibraltar in less than 13 days according to official reports, which by our estimates would make her first appearance on Gib shores on or around 19th June 2013, but we are awaiting confimation from CEO’s of the Sunborn project whether she is on schedule or not.

There have been a few contraditions in the media as to whether or not this Sunborn is the only Sunborn in the world.  Some publications have suggested that there are other Sunborns, however have not been able to find satisfactory or substantial, google, yahoo, Bing or Tripadvisor reviews for the Sunborns, as one would expect, even with a modest B&B in Torquay one would expect more than a few reviews from a concept existing since 1998, neither is there an innundation of youtube films, in fact there is little or no mention of the Sunborn except on Gibraltar official PR machine.

Gibraltar Tourism look forward to seeing a new and innovative idea such as the Sunborn, not only to create jobs but also to promote Gibraltar, but there are many, many questions left unanswered, and a great deal of mystery, all very exciting and intriguing:

Where is she coming from?

Which boatyard has been revamping her?

If the ship is brand new then why does she need to dock at Gib naval docks for a lick of paint and some televisions fitting, that sort of thing (quote from Brian Stevendale CEO Sunborn on YGTV interview) who also adds that there is stakeholder from the government of Gibraltar!  Interesting!  The charasmatic Mr Stevendale also goes on to say that Gibraltar is losing out to neighbouring Spain because there are no hotels nearby to offer the same high standards.


Most perplexing is that Gibraltar Toursim can’t seem to find any evidence that any other Sunborn exists anywhere else in the world, so will Gibraltar really have something that cannot be experienced anywhere else in the world?  If so then that in itself is a selling point.

Whatever the case, the workers at Marina Bay need to get a wriggle on if they are to finish their work in the next 14 days, photos of development coming soon on the new dock for Sunborn.

Can’t wait to see it when it arrives…


By John Middleton –