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'Saloufest' underway

Tue 12th Apr 2011

The UK and Spanish press are once again covering the start of the annual 'Saloufest'.

Every year since its conception in 2002, the sleepy Catalonian seaside town near Tarragona, has hosted as many as 8'000 students from various British Universities on an 'Easter bender'.

The tour is loosely plugged as a sporting festival, which attracts various male and female football, rugby and hockey teams, however many students admit that the equipment that they bring with never gets used. For one the heat during the day is far in excess of what they are acclimatised to, and for another, they are usually all the worse for wear due to suffering the effects of alcohol the previous night.

In a sleepy seaside town no bigger than Newquay, and where the tourists have not yet begun to arrive for this year's season, 'Saloufest' is a contentious issue for many locals and opinion is widely divided.

The vast majority of the locals are opposed to the event due to the extreme numbers of young Brits who disrespect the town by vomiting and urinating in the streets, and whose behaviour can be quite alarming at all times of day and night. The Police and other town hall officials who are tasked with cleaning up the mess that they leave often have to call on their counterparts in the UK to add to their numbers just to be able to cope.

On the other hand, the town's business leaders welcome the students with open arms. The 8'000 students on a week-long bender can, and often do, spend more in the bars and restaurants in one week, than the same amount of family tourists would do in a month.

With the Spanish economy struggling to fight it's way out of recession, and the tourist season not yet begun, many business owners would be sorry indeed to see the back of Saloufest.

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