Update 14 December: AquíSur is reporting tonight that the opening of the new Rastro San Miguel (former Guaza car boot market) has had to be postponed for a week. The new market, behind Lidl in Las Chafiras, was supposed to open tomorrow but it appears that it will now be inaugurated on Sunday 22 instead. The problem appears to be a minor administrative one.
Update 8 December: Guaza market has not only left Guaza. It has now given up on Arona and left the municipality altogether. As AquiSur has reported, it has taken refuge in in Las Chafiras, in San Miguel de Abona, where the Ayuntamiento has achieved in just a few weeks what Arona failed to do in a year, namely formally authorize its activity.
According to leaflets distributed this morning, the new market will be behind Lidl from 15 December, and will open Saturdays and Sundays between 7am and 2pm. From now on, although it will probably be called “the old Guaza market”, its formal name will be Rastro San Miguel, and it will be a proper market, offering new goods as well as second-hand items. There will also be a cafe bar and toilet facilities.
Update 6pm: Arona has announced that it has managed to arrange for the Guaza market to be held next Sunday, though on a different site in the town. At present, this still lacks Guardia Civil approval and an agreement between the organizers and the owners of the proposed site. There will be further information later.
Update 23 September: Some 200 traders are set to camp outside Arona town hall in protest at the loss of part of their livelihood with the closure of the car boot sale. Arona Ayuntamiento, however, says that in the face of police threats of denuncias to the Courts it had no choice but to withdraw the “verbal permission” it had given for twelve years for the site to be used. Some would argue that the traders who are now protesting shouldn’t have had a “livelihood” from it to lose because it was not supposed to be a formal market, where stallholders should have trading licences and pay stall fees. Some 150 out of the 200 traders are said to be “regulars”.
The police argument is not just that it was an illegal market however. A large part of the problem is police exasperation with following up the many denuncias they received about thieving from sellers and public alike – the market was notorious for the problem – and for the number of stolen goods that were cleared through the site. Police also say that in the case of a major denuncia against the “market”, they themselves would be partly responsible in law because they would not have carried out necessary policing, but that in such an illegal situation normal policing is impossible.
Under such police pressure, Arona Ayuntamiento didn’t have much choice other than to close the market. The last thing the council needs right now is another denuncia for anything!! But why didn’t the council take the alternative route of granting a licence? At root of it all, it appears to be yet another example of Arona’s chaotic and inept management, because it transpires that there is a complete lack of regulatory bylaws in Arona concerning markets. To be fair, Adeje only arranged theirs a fortnight ago, and right now Arona Ayuntamiento has its hands full with umpteen legal procedures against the ruling group for corruption which could yet see even the top of the tree in prison for several years. The next worry, however, apart from Guaza, will be Los Cristianos market – because that is therefore also completely illegal. How long before the council closes that?
Original post 22 September: Arona’s Mayor Niño has ordered the closure of Guaza car boot sale from today, which was the last sale. I have no further information other than it was as a result of repeated pressure from the Guardia Civil concerning the illegality of the market and the lack of municipal licence.