This weeks issue of local news will be dedicated
to the English media that feature Ibiza in their daily, weekly
or monthly publications and broadcasts. This summer, more
than any other, we have witnessed numerous television crews,
reporters and photographers working all over the island.
After the enormous viewing figures reached
by Sky's "Ibiza Uncovered" a few years ago, many
television companies have decided to visit the White Isle
in search of similar success. And so this year, programmes
such as "Reps in Ibiza", "Babes in the Balearics",
etc., etc. have been born.
Last week we have seen everything from all
night television broadcasting from Privilege and Pacha to
a week long broadcast of a world record breaking " Blind
Date" to numerous reports in the English newspapers about
the island, to the most popular British travel programme filming
in Ibiza, to name just a few.
Manchester's famous radio station Piccadilly
Radio, Key 103 FM, along with the Manchester Evening News
and London Weekend Television, have spent over half a million
pounds broadcasting the biggest "Blind Date" in
the world from various locations around the island. The popular
radio station held a competition in the UK to promote their
event. The 160 fortunate winners enjoyed a week's holiday
in the sun as well as getting a chance to meet their perfect
partners. Key 103 FM broadcast daily live from Ibiza to keep
their UK listeners up to date on the progress of the 80 "Blind
Date" couples. The marketing manager of Key 103 FM, Paul
Coleman assured me that the project has been a great success
and they have managed to gain an entry in the "Guinness
Book of Records".
Rapture TV were one of the biggest crews
on the island last week with seven cameras and three truckloads
of equipment. They broadcast a live five-hour programme from
Pacha discotheque last Saturday night 21st July and recorded
an eight-hour programme at Privilege discotheque on Monday
23rd July for transmission on Saturday 28th July.
Some English newspapers had a field day
last week reporting on the uncollected rubbish that accumulated
on the streets in some areas of the island due to the unfortunate
strike action by the employees of the Herbusa company who
are responsible for most of the islands rubbish collection.
Thankfully the strike is now over and normal service has been
resumed. This however will probably not be reported by the
same newspapers that delighted in publishing images of the
piles of rubbish last week.
On the other hand, one of the television
companies (Thames Television) who were filming here last week
will definitely give a positive overview of the island. Judith
Chalmers and her famous travel programme "Wish you were
here...?" has been on the island since Monday 23rd July
making a programme about the Ibiza that we all know and love
and that, unfortunately, the British public have seen or read
very little about in the past few years, as most of the coverage
of Ibiza has either been detrimental to the island or has
only featured the youth market and their famous clubbing scene.
During a break from filming, Judith Chalmers
took time out to speak with me about the island. When I asked
about her views on Ibiza, she said: "In England when
someone says they are going to Ibiza for their holidays, most
people say oh gracious Ibiza! My programme wants to change
that attitude, it starts by saying you might think you know
Ibiza, you might think you have seen all there is to see,
you might think Ibiza is not right for you but you might actually
be wrong. It is not all-endless clubbing and all night parties,
there is another side to the island and that other side is
what we are trying to put across in our programme. We are
staying in Santa Eularia and we are filming mostly the East
Coast of the island with its lovely beaches and Ibiza Old
Town. I think that if people can just realise the beauty of
the island, the countryside, the beaches, etc. and the proximity
to the UK everything should be all right for the future. There
is so much positive side to Ibiza which I am delighted to
Judith Chalmers started her career in broadcasting
at the tender age of 13 with Children's Hour for the BBC in
Manchester. She went on to work for BBC News and reported
on nearly every major event in the UK in the 1970s and 1980s,
for example the royal wedding of Princess Diana and Prince
Charles. In 1973, Thames Television started a holiday programme
called "Wish you were here...?" hosted by Judith
Chalmers and Jim Lloyd.
In the early days, the programme had a viewing
audience of 19 million, and although today those figures have
reduced, her programme is still watched by many millions of
UK viewers and is very influential on their choice of holiday
During our conversation, Judith commented
on the changes she had witnessed since her last visit to Ibiza
in the mid 1980s. "I think that all the building work
is a positive aspect because it shows that Ibiza has grown
up." When I asked her if she thought that "clubbers"
and families could combine on the island she responded: "Yes,
definitely. I have talked to a lot of British people that
are here on holiday, some have been coming here for 20 years
and others for the first time, and they are all surprised
how quiet it is in some parts of the island. I am very glad
that this is still the case and will be able to prove to my
viewers that there is still a quieter side to the island,
away from all the noise, that yes, has its place with the
The new series of "Wish you were here...?"
will be transmitted on ITV from January 2002.
Just a closing note, for the past few years
the clubbers magazines DJ, MIXMAG, etc., among others, have
been commenting on the number of accidents that occur outside
the two main discotheques on the island (Privilege and Amnesia),
and this week the Consell Insular (Island Council) have installed
speed restricting traffic lights outside these two venues.
I wonder if the British media have had any influence on the