Details of the work done by the British Consulate in Alicante, Spain, to help expats are revealed in a new television show to be broadcast in the next few weeks.
The Our Man In … series gives a glimpse of the life of an expat including British residents at an outreach event in Torrevieja, shoppers meeting consular staff in Iceland supermarket and Brits caught up in a forest fire.
The job of the eight strong consular team in the region is to provide assistance to an estimated 330,000 British residents in the Alicante district, plus 3.5 million British holidaymakers who visit the area every year.
‘The programme shows some of the expats we are here to help. Our pro active visits to the community are designed to listen to the concerns of British residents and help them with issues ranging from property to pensions,’ explained Consul Paul Rodwell.
‘We’re also very keen to get the message across that residents can do simple things to help themselves and their friends,’ he added.
Also Consul Paul Rodwell is given a hard time by expats angry about having their properties threatened with demolition.
As well as helping British expats caught up in a forest fire, the programme shows consular staff working with Spanish police to manage an invasion of tartan clad football fans for a Spain Scotland game in Alicante, and dealing with a fatal road traffic accident in Benidorm.
The first of the three part series on the UK’s Channel 4 is aired tonight and features the Balearics, next week is Alicante and the final part a week later features Tenerife and Barcelona.
On the party island of Ibiza the consulate deals with the fall out from a new drug invading the club scene called pink pill. One young tourist is found lost, nearly naked, and unable to recall anything but his name. And then the Brit dealers who supply the pills also need help after they’re arrested.
Over in Mallorca, staff deal with a young Brit who’s been tasered by overzealous police. A holidaymaker from Essex has been run over by a drunk driver, and lies seriously injured in hospital. And a Lancashire couple’s holiday is transformed by the arrival, nine weeks early, of their tiny baby son.
The series was filmed mainly in August and September last year and is produced by Screenchannel Television, a London based independent production company.