(Published 31st March, 2020)

We are now on day #16 of lockdown here in Spain. Fortunately, I am in Tenerife which appears to be faring a lot better than the mainland from where the daily updates are quite grim. It’s difficult to make accurate comparisons because different countries measure their deaths differently but, regardless of how they measure, their figures are rising at an alarming rate. The Spanish mainland are clearly having a tough time. The UK appears to be about one week behind Spain and so I find it incredulous that so many people are ignoring the social distancing guidelines in the UK.

As we in Tenerife are a week ahead of you in the UK, here are some things you may well have to look forward to.

Fines in Spain for breaking the curfew are currently between 100 & 600 euros. On person has been jailed for four months. I believe they are increasing this to a fine of up to 4,000 euros and up to five years in prison.

The crime rates are rising. We are informed via local social media pages that Bars are being broken into every night and their stock, audio systems and anything else of value stolen. I would imagine this will only get worse as some people will have ran out of money already so regardless of how much food the shops and supermarkets have (which is plenty), some people won’t have the means to buy it. The government here needs to make sure that no-one without money goes hungry.

There are few if any reports of homes being broken into but of course, they are now occupied by those on lockdown. I would imagine that those with holidays homes and second homes currently unoccupied will almost certainly be in for an unpleasant surprise when lockdown is lifted because inevitably many houses currently unoccupied will not be as they left them.

Back in London we are still busy. Not as busy as normal but busy nonetheless with our teams having moved into the staff quarters of the homes that we normally look after and whose owners are currently elsewhere. The risk of these prestigious homes being broken into has obviously increased however with our teams now resident for the duration, they are even safer than normal.

If you know of anyone who has an office, workshop, warehouse or unoccupied home that would benefit from having staff in there 24/7 during this crisis then please get in touch. We have experienced security staff who could move in to protect the premises virtually immediately.

Our office telephone lines are open 24/7 : +44 207 118 1168

#staysafe #stayinside #keepyourdistance #dontaccidentlykillsomeone #stayhome

Locked down in Spain – Day #10

(Published on 25th March, 2020)

We are now on day #10 of lockdown. Two days ago, the UK effectively got locked down but you have a great privilege, an option not allowed to us in Spain. You can go out for a walk or a jog. After 10 days locked down here I am a bit jealous. I would recommend you use it and hope that you don’t lose it because some idiots abuse it. Really, a long walk will help keep you sane. If I were to try that here I’d be chased back into the house by the police or army (or both), fined or gaoled. There have been over 31,000 fines so far in Spain varying between 100 & 600 euros for breaking the curfew. Yesterday someone was sentenced to 4 months in prison for breaking the curfew. On the news today the government are talking of increasing the fines to up to 4,000 euros and up to five years in prison.

Enjoy your long walks and jogging while you can and remember to #keepyourdistance

And when you’re not exercising #stayinside

Locked down in Spain – Day #5

(Published on 20th March)

As I write this I am currently locked down in Spain (Tenerife). The lockdown started at 08:00 on Monday 16th March and was initially to be for 15 days. That has since been extended to 30 days i.e. 15th April.

You are only allowed to leave your home to either buy food, for medical reasons or to take your dog for a short walk to ‘empty’ it.

All the restaurants, bars, gyms and non-food shops apart from Chemists are closed and by Wednesday 25th April, every hotel in Spain will be closed. Imagine that, a country so reliant on tourism closing down every single hotel.

There are police and military patrolling the streets chasing people back to their homes and hotels and fining those who break the curfew. Their interpretation of minimum use of force differs from the police in the UK and are so they are enforcing the curfew robustly and with enthusiasm. Whilst the situation is being referred to as a Lockdown, I think had we been in say Venezuela the media might have referred to it as being under martial law.

Supermarkets are seeing never ending queues longer than those normally reserved for Christmas eve in the UK. The police and military are there too so as to maintain order. Only one person from the house is allowed to go to buy food. Fines of 600 euros if you break that rule.
Whilst the Police are patrolling the streets to ‘maintain order and to prevent looting etc.’ I’m told that petty crime is on the increase. It’s understandable really because Spain’s social security system doesn’t offer a safety net anything near as good as the UK and also because not everyone has money to buy food especially as so many of the population here work in tourism. To their credit the government have topped up the food banks. A bit ironic as food banks only exist because of government failures but, tactically, very clever to get food to the most needy.

We are lucky in that we have a house here and everything we need for a comfortable quarantine. I have always mocked my wife asking her if she is preparing for a nuclear winter however those cupboards full of food look like they’re going to come in handy. (She was stockpiling before it was fashionable)

I am resigned to being here for at least two months. In reality, it may be three or four months or even longer because right now, we don’t know what we’re dealing with. Whilst Mrs M. and I agree that we probably will contract the virus at some point, our objective is to delay that event as long as we possibly can by which time the health services will understand the virus so much better and will be so much wiser as to treatments and medicines etc. I was quite amused to hear someone say that they didn’t care if they contracted the virus because they were sure that they’d be in the 80% who just got a sore throat. When I asked them if they would fly if every fifth aircraft crash landed, they didn’t really have a reply. Whilst I don’t claim to be a Doctor, you certainly don’t want this virus until Boris has his 30,000 new ventilators in position so please, keep yourself safe.

Finally, for the time being, it’s business as normal. I am working from the office in the house here and our senior managers are in London running operations for the duration. If you have any security questions or concerns then please get in touch. If you need us to visit you and assuming London isn’t locked down, then we’ll do everything we can to come to you.

Regardless of lockdown or not, we are always at the end of the telephone to advise on security matters as necessary. 0207 118 1168.

Good luck and stay safe.