Curtly Richards

Curtly Richards has 354 articles published.

Armed Forces

in Armed Forces

Officers from the Gibraltar Defence Police were awarded their Platinum Jubilee Medals in a recent ceremony held at the Force Headquarters in HMNB.

Officers who have served a minimum of 5 years in the emergency services are entitled to the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Medal.


Youth Outreach

Members of The Royal Gibraltar Regiment’s recruitment team invited The Youth Service to Devil’s Tower Camp to participate in the Royal Gibraltar Regiment Youth Outreach Programme.

Twenty children between the ages of 10 and 17 spent the day learning about the history of the Royal Gibraltar Regiment and what its responsibilities are today.


GDP Passing Out Parade

In a brief ceremony at the Gibraltar Defence Police (GDP) Headquarters in Her Majesty’s Naval Base, GDP’s Chief of Police Rob Allen presented new recruits with their certificates for completion of their initial training, and for the latest recruits their first warrant cards.

Speaking to the new recruits in the presence of family members, the Chief of Police first welcomed Commodore Tom Guy RN, who has recently taken over as Commander British Forces Gibraltar.

Turning to the recruits, Chief of Police, Rob Allen said: “You have achieved an early milestone in your careers, having completed your initial training. You have a unique status as police officers, and you should use your significant legal powers with integrity and humility at all times.

“As police officers, sworn under Gibraltar Law, first and foremost you are here to keep people safe – that is your principal objective.

“The MOD maintains a police force to work with other law enforcement agencies locally to provide the necessary safety and security for the MOD and Her Majesty’s armed forces to carry out their mission in Gibraltar.”

Addressing the recruits following the presentation of their certificates, Commodore Tom Guy said that he was delighted to be in Gibraltar and highlighted the importance of the GDP to British Forces Gibraltar.

The police officers involved were: PC Daubney, PC Prescott, PC Celecia, PC Lombard, PC Avellano, PC Mauro, PC Galliano, PC Gaivizo, PC Benyoussef, PC Stokes.


RG CHANGES

Warrant Officer Class 1 Patrick Canepa has been promoted to Captain after completing three years as the Royal Gibraltar Regiment’s Regimental Sergeant Major (RSM).

During his three years as RSM, he helped steer the Regiment through the COVID-19 Pandemic, administrated the Battalion and planned and executed ceremonial events such as the Royal Gun Salutes and Ceremony of the Keys.

Royal Gibraltar Regiment’s Capt Canepa said, “Becoming RSM has been the pinnacle of my career. I joined the Regiment 22 years ago and never expected to become RSM. To finish of my time as RSM, I had the privilege of planning and executing Public Duties outside the Royal Palaces.

“I was also present as the Regiment received their New Colours at Windsor Castle and was involved with the recent Royal Visit here in Gibraltar.

“I now look forward to my new role as the Planning Officer.”

Warrant Officer Class 1 Dan Henderson has also been appointed as the new RSM. Henderson enlisted in the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers in 1999. 

RSM Henderson added, “It is a great honour and a huge privilege to be appointed RSM of the Royal Gibraltar Regiment.”

Charity swim for four-legged friends

in Features

A charity swim organised by a Royal Gibraltar Police officer last Saturday has raised over £5,000 for the Animals In Need Foundation (AINF).

The event saw 28 police officers and 21 members of the public join forces at the Gasa Indoor Swimming Pool to swim laps of the pool.

Armed with swimming caps and goggles, a relay of fundraisers swam from 9am to 6pm to raise the funds.

In total, the swimmers covered a combined distance of over 35km – which would have taken them from Gibraltar to Morocco and back.

Event organiser and police officer Tania Moreno, who works in the RGP’s Resource Management department, said: “We would like to say a huge thank you to everyone that took part in some way at our second annual sponsored swim event.

“The day was a huge success and we managed to raise some much needed funds for our doggies. It was such a fun event and there are so many people to thank, but a special mention to the Gibraltar Sports and Leisure Authority, the staff at GASA and the helpful and friendly lifeguards on duty.

“A huge thank you to each and every participant and to every person who has kindly contributed and sponsored. A special mention to 11-year-old Charlie Balloqui who raised the most funds – a whopping £600 on his own – thank you for being so kind.

“And of course this could not have been possible without the support of the Animals in Need Foundation Team. A special thanks to my colleagues for going the extra mile for us too.

“We had experienced swimmers, the not so experienced ones, the floaters, the mystery swimmers, the ones who collected money and could not come and the supporters who came in for a chat or to donate.

“Thank you to all on behalf of our dogs.” Tania, who has been volunteering at the Gibraltar-based charity for the past five years, explained that it currently looks after more than 50 abandoned dogs.

The funds will be used for kennel and vets’ fees, medication, dog food and obedience training.

AINF works with shelters, pounds and other charities, both local and international, to save abandoned and unwanted animals.

For more information visit:

www.ainfgib.com

Rugby Visitors

in Features/Sport Insight

A team from the British Army responsible for the Army’s physical fitness has spent a week in Gibraltar.

During their visit, the Royal Army Physical Training Corps (RAPTC) played Gibraltar Select in 15s Rugby Union, winning 52–17, before competing in the Gibraltar 7s Tournament.

Whilst on the Rock the soldiers also helped with a number of tasks at Bruce’s Farm — a residential rehabilitation centre.

A spokesman for the RAPTC, said, “Whilst they were primarily here for the rugby, they also tested their skills at Gunwharf Water Activity Centre with the speed boat and paddle boarding and did the Mediterranean Steps, losing items to the local macaques along the way. The entire team were left in awe during a tour of St Michael’s Cave.”

“We would like to thank British Forces Gibraltar for allowing us the opportunity to visit and we hope to be back in the future.”

The spokesman added that the Corps began life as the Army Gymnastic Staff in 1860 after the Crimean War, but its reputation has since grown due to its key role in developing and maintaining soldiers’ physical readiness for military operations.

Art Revolution

in Event

Ace Art launched on the 7th July 2022 and consist of an online gallery which specialises in the sale and promotion of art works from both local and international artists. The first exhibition,
‘Art Revolution’ introduced Gibraltar to some of the exciting international and local artists Ace Art will be working with.

Ace Art is an idea created by local businessman, John-Paul Bautista, who started his art collection with mainly contemporary and urban street art. With artworks collected from both
Gibraltarian and international artists, the collection started growing and
so did Ace Art’s relationships with the artists. After a few years of research, exhibitions and meetings, Ace Art decided to assist, promote and sell the works of some of their favourite artists and at the same time trade some
artworks in order to aid the growth of its private collection.

Ace Art’s team all come from a business or artistic background with years of experience in retail, wholesale, start ups, management and events. This experience together with a extensive social network and love for art makes Ace Art the perfect place to buy, sell and grow as an artist or collector.

Community Insight

in Community Insight

Bermondsey Project Space

Nine artists will be representing Gibraltar at a special exhibition in Bermondsey Project Space, in London, in September.

The event is organised by Gibraltar Cultural Services on behalf of the Ministry of Culture and is part of the National Week celebrations, aiming to put the Rock on the artistic map and provide a snapshot of what Gibraltar means to the community.

The nine is a mix of established artists and younger up and coming artists, many of whom have recently been recognised by international adjudicators in competitive exhibitions and who have been very active in the local scene over the past year. The exhibition is based on the theme “Gibraltar, Our Sacred Earth, A Sense of Space”.

Lorraine Buhagiar will be submitting two artworks which are inspired by the reminder of the sense of belonging to her ‘homeland and community’. The works evoke previous memories for the artist and comprise mixed media.

Shane Dalmedo’s sculptures depict her memories, a place she, “…yearned for, held, remembered…”. Her works feature mixed media sculptures, and a figure, one of which is titled “Llévame Donde Naci”.

Naomi Duarte will exhibit six scannographic photographs. Naomi comments that “Gibraltar has an ephemeral quality … timeless beauty and culture.”

Leslie Gaduzo will be exhibiting three of his paintings, two of which are of Gibraltar in times gone by. The artist commented, “… despite time, we inhabit the same spaces, same streets and feel the intensity of the sun falling as they did then.”

Alan Perez will be submitting a video installation piece which was a collaborative project with Stephane Dominicy and Aaron Yeandle one of the 2019 Island Games residency contributors.

The piece features, and is inspired by, The Queen’s Cinema.

Monica Popham, in her works, reflects Gibraltar and its densely packed architecture and recognisable features. On each wooden tile, the artist depicts a fragment of sunlight falling on Gibraltar’s urban landscape.

Sebastian Rodriguez will be submitting four artworks which convey the sacred and sense of space. Most of his works have been painted from life, including Trafalgar Cemetery, his personal place for respite.

Karl Ullger will be submitting five artworks, commenting that “wherever you stand in Gibraltar, you will be showered with cultural diversity”.

Zulaika Vallance will be exhibiting both a painting and video. Her piece “Surreal Childhood” won first prize in 2021 at The Young Artist competition. Gibraltar, she says has always been inspiration for her work, it is where she learnt to draw, paint and think creatively.

GCS believes the experience will be important in promoting Gibraltarian artists abroad. Bermondsey Project Space is a flagship venue for both emerging and established artists. Exhibiting at this key cultural venue in London will be beneficial to the artists, raising their artistic profile and showcasing the Rock’s high standard of artistic work.


NATIONAL HONOURS CALL FOR NOMINATIONS

The Gibraltar Honours Board (GHB), under the Chairmanship of the Governor, will meet in October to consider nominations for the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2023 and the Gibraltar Award, which is awarded by the Governor on behalf of the GHB and announced at the same time as the New Year Honours List 2023.

Nominations should be submitted to recognise those people, from any section of the Gibraltarian Community, who have made an exceptional contribution or given exceptional service in the progression of either the well-being, achievement or reputation of Gibraltar.

Nominations should be submitted no later than Friday 30th September on a Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) Nomination Form for the attention of the GHB Secretary, Office of the Governor, The Convent, Main Street, Gibraltar GX11 1AA.

Nominations can be submitted by anyone.

A copy of the FCDO Nomination Form, along with detailed guidance on its completion, can be obtained from The Convent entrance on Main Street or from the GHB Secretary at enquiry.gibraltar@fcdo.gov.uk

Please note that the nomination form has been amended for this round and all nominations must be submitted on the new form.

Up to two letters of endorsement from those with a personal knowledge of the nominee’s contribution or service should support nominations.

Nominations will be considered by the GHB for the following Honours:

Companion of Saint Michael and Saint George (CMG) and Commander of the British Empire (CBE). Awarded for having a prominent national role, a conspicuous leading role in regional affairs through achievement or service to the community, or a distinguished and innovative contribution to his or her area of activity.

Officer of the British Empire (OBE). Awarded for a distinguished regional or national role in any field, through achievement or service to the community including notable practitioners known locally.

Member of the British Empire (MBE). Awarded for achievement or service in and to the community which is outstanding in its field and has delivered sustained and real impact which stands out as an example to others.

British Empire Medal (BEM). Awarded for achievement or contribution of a very hands-on service to the local community. This might take the form of sustained commitment in support of a local charitable and/or voluntary activity, or innovative work that has delivered real impact but that is relatively short (three to four years) in duration.

Gibraltar Award (GA). Awarded to residents of Gibraltar who have served and contributed to the interests of Gibraltar and its people in an exceptional manner that is particularly worthy of special recognition.


Golf Marathon Challenge Tournament Fundraising Presentations

Golf Marathon Man David Steele, well known in Gibraltar and along the Costa del Sol, presented cheques to the two charities that benefited from the Golf Marathon Challenge that took place at the San Roque Club in July when David undertook to play six rounds of marathon speed golf, the idea being that teams should not take more than two and a half hours per round. 

“I’m thrilled with the results of this fundraising tournament and it is astonishing how well everybody who took part did considering this speed marathon format challenge hasn’t been attempted at the San Roque Club before,” David says.

David smashed his fundraising goal of €10,000, with the final total raised being just over €20,000 for two very worthy charities: Cancer Research Spain and Centro Contigo in La Linea, a charity for disadvantaged children and their families.

David is pictured below with representatives from both charities


Fingers on the Pulse

As part of their Continuous Professional Training, two of the RGP’s Crime Scene Investigators have improved their ability to match fingerprints against databases of stored prints.

PCs Caitriana Parker and Amandine Vallee successfully passed a one-week training course run by Ladislav Brenvasser of Thales Group, the manufacturer of the RGP’s fingerprinting equipment.


A Visit to the RGP

Three youngsters were given a tour of the RGP’s Traffic Compound by PC Julian Cruz this morning.

Ashleigh, Amelia and Oliver tried on police uniforms and sat in some of the police vehicles are part of their visit.

An RGP spokesman said: “Judging by their smiles, it looks like they had a great time. Visits like this are a good way to introduce our police officers to children from a young age, so that they know we are here to help them.”

Business Insight

in Business Insight

EV Delivery vehicles

Spanish company Scoobic has met with HMGoG to show how its last-mile electric vehicles could revolutionise door-to-door deliveries on the Rock.

In a meeting organised jointly by the Ministries of Transport and Commerce, there were real-world tests to demonstrate the capabilities of its electric vehicles.

It utilises a similar technology to the Starship vehicles in use in the UK and US.

Scoobic Light, a light tricycle, formed the mainstay of the trials. This vehicle has a load capacity of 250Kg and a range of 100km, more than enough to distribute through the Gibraltarian territory that has an area of 6 km long. This vehicle is already being used in delivery fleets in Naples, a city that is also characterized by narrow streets and overwhelming traffic. 

Also on show to HMGoG was the Eezon three-wheeled motorcycle, and the Scoobic eBox, a scooter that, thanks to its dual functionality, can be driven like any scooter or used to walk in a manner similar to an assisted trolley.


Net Zero Delivery Body

The first meeting of the Gibraltar Net Zero Delivery Body (NZDB), chaired by the Deputy Chief Minister Dr Joseph Garcia, was held and followed the publication of the Climate Change Strategy at the end of last year.

The group approved the draft regulations establishing the NZDB and individual members responded to the recommendations made by the Climate Change Committee for their respective organisations – including central government, represented by the Chief Secretary, the Ministry of Finance, the Department of the Environment and Climate Change, Town Planning, Technical Services, the GEA, the Port, the Ministry of Transport, the GHA, Public Health and Statistics. 

The NZDB also agreed to establish three priority working groups which will cover electric vehicle infrastructure development, cross-government data and reporting processes, and renewable energy generation.

Working groups will be set definite targets to be achieved by specific dates in order to ensure progress towards the overall decarbonisation agenda. 

Other work streams identified include a public engagement strategy, green finance, and climate adaptation and resilience.


NEW GREEN MORTGAGE

NatWest has announced a new mortgage product specifically targeted as making Gibraltar, and other jurisdictions, greener.

It’s available to over 18s resident in the Channel Islands, Isle of Man or Gibraltar on selected products for Gibraltar properties with a valid energy performance certificate (EPC) rating of A or B.

Green Mortgages are designed to reward customers for purchasing an energy efficient property in Gibraltar, offering a reduced rate on selected mortgage products for a fixed period of two years.

A Gibraltar property requires to have a valid Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of A or B to be eligible for this offer.

The Department of the Environment and Climate Change (DECC) is the competent authority for Energy Performance Legislation in Gibraltar. To find out more, visit the Gibraltar Government website.

EPC certificates are valid for 10 years from the date the report is produced. 

Adopt don’t Shop

in Animals & Pets

Please consider adopting one of these babies. They have been waiting a long time for a forever home.

Adopt don’t Shop

in Animals & Pets

Please consider adopting one of these babies. They have been waiting a long time for a forever home.

That’s a Wrap – End of term for PACS

in PACS

Our sessions have now come to an end for summer 2022. Many of our children will begin their next adventure by starting school in September. We will miss those little faces who regularly come to play and readily sing along, joyfully showing us their dance moves at song time or the creative skills at Cooking and Craft Club. It has been a pleasure to watch the children grow and progress through our playgroups, from babes in arms at our Bumps and Babies session, to the energetic and inquisitive pre-schoolers they have become. Good luck to parents and children as they start school in September.

Attending playgroup is an excellent way to prepare for school. Children & parents alike form friendships at playgroup, so much so that the children can often recognise a familiar face on that first day at school. Playgroup prepares a child to feel confident being in new settings, explore different play, & learn to share and take turns.   

As we come to the end of term at PACS we can reflect on the year. We returned in September 2021 with a full timetable…something we were unsure would happen after the last few years! 

Our ever popular Totally Toddlers and of course the Firm Favourite, Diddy Discoverers took off with a flying start. We saw an increase in new Mum’s at Bumps & Babies, all of whom wanted to talk about their experiences of having babies during lockdown. This group provides such valued support to new parents. It’s really lovely to watch new friendships grow as mothers support mothers.  

Cooking Club also returned and proved to be as popular as ever. Our little cooks have enjoyed making lots of amazing things and we’ve been amazed by how skilled they’ve become.   

Last May, we introduced a new play session to the PACS family. Sensory Stories, which runs every Thursday from 1-2, at the Methodist church, catering for children 18 months and above. The popularity of this group has increased week on week and it’s been a joy to see how much the children love books! 

But as many of our parents know, we’re always trying to find new ways to keep the children entertained. From September we introduced our monthly Craft Club. This gave the children a chance to use their creative skills and of course create the kind of mess parents prefer not to have at home! 

One of our proudest achievements this year is the fact that we have been able to offer two Positive Parenting Courses working in conjunction with Childline. The parents definitely benefitted from the course and we were able to look after their little one’s whilst Ines from Childline delivered the course. 

And last but by no means least…after a lot of work and planning we have been delighted to offer a new group on a Tuesday morning at The Family Centre called “Play Sense.” It had come to our attention that some of the children find our sessions too overwhelming and loud. Play Sense is a Sensory Friendly playgroup session which is smaller, less structured and much quieter than our other sessions. To ensure this we restrict numbers and have a booking system in place. So far the feedback we have received from parents has been very positive and we’re so pleased to be able to offer such a valuable session.  

So, as you can see, PACS has had a very busy 2021 / 2022.. New sessions, old favourites and a lot of fun! Planning for September has already taken place and we’ve got lots of exciting things planned for our Autunm Term. We pride ourselves on being able to offer our sessions to the whole community. Apart from Cooking & Craft Club, we work purely on a donation basis. We are also run solely by volunteers, without whom we wouldn’t be able to operate. Come join us in September to see what we are about. And of course, if you’d like to volunteer we’d love to hear from you! 

What Inspires us to Travel

in Features

Travel takes us out of our comfort zone and inspires us to see, taste and try new things. It constantly challenges us, not only to adapt to and explore new surroundings but also to engage with different people, to embrace adventures as they come and to share new and meaningful experiences with friends and loved ones.

Challenging yourself

You might feel like you are stuck in a rut in your daily life or perhaps craving new experiences and challenges. Travel is the ideal place to test yourself. It pushes people to their limits and pushes them outside their comfort zone. A person discovers how resourceful they are when exposed to new places, people and experiences. 

Perhaps it is navigating your way around a busy city or ordering food when you don’t speak the language. You will feel pride when you finish your trip successfully. Overcoming challenges will bring you joy and energy for future tests. You will understand how capable you are and build your confidence.

Learning

Learning is a significant reason why people love to travel.  We want to experience something unfamiliar and leave with new skills or knowledge. Travel is a masterclass in discovering how the rest of the world actually lives, in all senses.

Every destination has something unique to teach visitors. Immersing ourselves in a completely different world is a potent learning experience.

Individuals often travel to learn something specific: a new language, a different cuisine, aspects of a different culture or a deeper appreciation of spirituality. By actually experiencing this learning in real life, not reading it in a textbook, it will remains with you for a long time. 

Expanding your perspective

Meeting people from other places will show you that your world view is not the same as everyone else’s.

You cannot imagine how different life is in another place until you personally experience it. A different environment will help you discover and consider fresh ideas you have not previously thought of.

We can return home with different notions and possibilities. By being exposed to new places, people and cultures, you will develop a wider world view. This will create a well rounded, global citizen. This is a wonderful reward and pivotal reason why people love to travel.

Building and strengthening relationships

The shared experience of travel brings people together. A family getaway, a romantic trip or long weekend with friends can strengthen important bonds. With the demands of today’s lifestyle, and relatives spread across the country and world, families have precious little time together.

Whatever your travel experience looks like, it is an opportunity to connect with each other. It may even smooth over any family niggles and create happier relationships. Couples, too, need to bond with each other away from home and work demands. Sharing travel experiences can ignite fresh sparks that last long after the couple returns home.

Travel is a special way to deepen friendships as well. Whether it is a ski break with friends or a week-long beach getaway with your family, travel will remind you why you became friends in the first place and how rewarding it is to spend focused time together.

Travel is also a great opportunity to make new friends – either fellow travellers or locals. 

Escaping

Whether it is a demanding job, a bad breakup or a bereavement, travel can be a huge relief from the stress and unhappiness that come along with those situations. People desire from their travels what they don’t have back home: fabulous weather, breathtaking scenery and the freedom to do exactly what they want. Experiences they cannot normally have, at a slower, relaxing pace. 

Stepping away from the workplace is good for you both mentally and physically. When you return, you will have had the mental space to look at issues with a fresh perspective. Travel has the power to let you not only escape but also heal. A new location with fun distractions can work wonders. You will return home more at peace and restored, prepared for future challenging situations.

Relaxing and rejuvenating

Even if not escaping problems, everyone can benefit from a break from our usual regime of all work and no play. You may not realise how much you need to disconnect from the ever-present pressure of being available by phone, email or social media. Travel is exactly what you need to rejuvenate yourself. 

A relaxing natural setting and good weather are common ingredients for the R&R-focused trip. But everyone’s idea of the perfect rejuvenating vacation is different. One person might want to trek through a rainforest. Another may want to lie poolside at a Mexican resort. 

What should you do when you’re there? Nothing, really. Relax and be present in the moment. Let sensations like the lapping water and the warmth of the sun, along with the sound of waves, recharge your batteries. 

Celebrating

There is always a wonderful reason to take a trip. A special occasion is made even more special by celebrating away from the hectic pace of life at home. It’s also a good way to gather family and friends from distant corners to mark the milestone. Celebration holidays provide a lasting benefit as well – shared memories for a lifetime.

Value your life

When you feel somewhat stuck in your daily life, it is easy to lose sight of what you have and forget or not recognise what is special about our own homes.

Travelling, exploring and creating experiences in other locations can highlight what is positive and meaningful about our own homes.  Absorbing other cultures can create a deeper appreciation for our everyday lives.

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