Sunday, 27 July 2014

As most of you know I have been broadcasting on radio and sometimes television over the last 25 years, firstly on Onda Cero helping to pioneer English radio in Spain then launching REM FM (name changed to TRE) and then launching iTalk FM. Most of you will also know that the Junta de Andalusia sent out warnings to ALL English radio stations and many Spanish owned radio stations that unless they rectified their licensing position (which none have, because there are NO licences available, nore will there be in the foreseeable future) they would be fined up to 500,000 Euro. Many of the owners ignored this threat knowing that the administrators of these stations had no assets or those that had, had them cleverly camouflaged. I was exposed I was on high risk as I could lose my family home and much more. The penalty was just too high to justify me carrying on. It was time for a reassessment. I know that these unlicensed radio stations have continued, I do not know what the Junta is going to do in the future but for me the risk was simply too high and with a heavy heart we shut down.

So here I was in my 60’s forced into retirement that I could ill afford. For those that know me also know that there was NO WAY that I would accept this situation, I just couldn't sit at home vegetating or gardening, doing housework etc this was never going to be me! I also knew that this wasn’t going to be easy to resolve, I loved my work as a broadcaster but realistically I knew it was all but finished. I also knew that I HAD to find something to do, so I looked at areas that I had a talent in, marketing was one but who would hire someone in their 60’s? Businesses want young blood and I don’t blame them.
There was one other area I had a passion for and that was real estate. All through my adult life I had bought and sold property very successfully. I had over the years thought about getting involved in Marbella especially through the boom years but I was too busy with night clubs, live shows and of course broadcasting. So why not now? Thankfully I have got to know many of the owners of the top real estate agencies in Marbella as friends so I set up investigating meetings with some of them and to my surprise all asked me would I join them!! I was delighted and very excited, the timing couldn’t have been better as the property marketed was really picking up. In the end I decided on Bromley Estates Marbella one of the coasts most successful agencies and boy am I glad I did. Although I’m just about to complete my third month it’s been a phenomenal experience and thankfully a very successful one (hope it’s not beginners luck!!) I'm meeting such a diversity of clients from countries like China, Canada, Qatar, Netherlands, England, and Ireland. I’m having a blast and love showing my clients some of the stunning properties we have. I just would never have believed that I would ever be able to replace something (broadcasting) I loved with such a passion by something so quickly that I’ve taken to. I believed for many years especially the lean ones I was to set in my ways and could never change, how wrong I was. `
A huge lesson Ive learnt is It’s never too late. So instead of spending the day preparing radio shows, I now spend the time preparing property tours for my clients.

Will I return to broadcasting? If I was asked years ago would I give up broadcasting I would have said never? So I suppose the answer would be ; ‘never say never’. `
How about my charity work? Well only two months ago I hosted Children with Cancer gala which was a great success and have had the usual request to do more especially during this summer but the truth is I’m in the office early mornings and sometimes don’t get back after touring a client until late in the evening, so my work hosting these events will have to be limited.

So now I've 'come out' lets get down to business! Want to buy a stunning property? We have apartments, townhouses, villas we have it all from as little as 100,000 to 6 million euro and more. We cover the areas from Malaga to Sotogrande and beyond.
Have a look at our website: Call me on 646 247 996 if you want your dream home, I have it. Email me on

I'd just like to finish this by offering a huge thank you to those who have so generously supported me over the years both on radio and TV. Thank you all so much.

You'll enjoy the Boland property tour as much as you enjoyed his radio shows.

Hamas Killed 160 Palestinian Children to Build Terror Tunnels
Militant group used child labor to construct underground network in Gaza

|July 25, 2014 10:15 AM|

As the death toll of Operation Protective Edge rises, the deaths of children are firmly in the spotlight—and rightly so. It pains all reasonable people to hear of children dying as the consequence of war. Hamas and its supporters display gruesome pictures of dead and wounded children in order to gain sympathy for their portrait of Israel as the villain intent on killing Palestinians. In response, Israel cites the need to stop Hamas from firing thousands of rockets at its own children, who are being forced to live in bomb shelters, as well as the need to eliminate the tunnels that Hamas dug into Israel in order to carry out terror attacks against Israelis. One tunnel opening was found underneath an Israeli kindergarten.

But who built those tunnels? The answer is Hamas, of course—using some of the same children who are now trapped under fire in Gaza.

The Institute for Palestine Studies reported on Gaza’s Tunnel Phenomenon in the summer of 2012. It reported that tunnel construction in Gaza has resulted in a large number of child deaths.

At least 160 children have been killed in the tunnels, according to Hamas officials


The author, Nicolas Pelham, explains that Hamas uses child laborers to build their terror tunnels because, “much as in Victorian coal mines, they are prized for their nimble bodies”.

Human rights groups operating in Gaza raised concerns about child labor in the tunnels as far back as 2008. Hamas responded by saying it was “considering curbs.” Following Operation Cast Lead in 2009 Hamas softened its position and the Interior Ministry established the Tunnel Affairs Commission (TAC) which, “In response to public concern at a rising toll of tunnel casualties, particularly of child workers…issued guidelines intended to ensure safe working conditions.” No mention is made in the report of the conditions that would result for both Palestinian and Israeli children from building tunnels that would be used to launch terror attacks.

Nor does it seem that Hamas paid much subsequent attention to ensuring the safety of the child workers that it used to build the tunnels that would wind up endangering the lives of many in Gaza. On a tour of the tunnels in 2011, Pelham noted that, “nothing was done to impede the use of children in the tunnels.”

Not only are Hamas misappropriating much of the humanitarian aid supplied to Gaza—800,000 tons of cement were used to construct the terror tunnels into Israel—they are also directly exploiting and endangering Gaza’s youth in their construction and operation.

Saturday, 26 July 2014

HEADLINES THIS EVENING; HAMAS REFUSE TO INCREASE CEASEFIRE ISRAEL AGREES: Gaza militants fire mortars into Israel as 12-hour ceasefire is extended to 16 amid worldwide protests crying out for an end to the conflict It doesnt take much to realise why: HAMAS DO NOT WANT PEACE!


Watch how Islamic savages behave. Is this really the future you want for our children and grandchildren?

Whilst no Arab nation is willing to help the Palestinians: Despite being under constant rocket attack, Israel sent 778 trucks packed with good into Gaza:

The right wing supports Israel because they believe that the state of Israel is necessary for the start of the Christian apocalypse and second coming, both of which are positions that I find abhorrent. These right wingers don’t really care about Israel (in their mythology, the country is destroyed and all the Jews die once the final conflict begins), are unable to criticize it when it actually does things that are wrong, and have absolutely no compassion for those harmed in the long-standing conflict.
Conversely, the left wingers who support the Palestinians are doing so because they see the very real humanitarian crisis facing the Palestinians and want to make things better. Unfortunately, they have made several extreme mistakes in their thinking which has led them to buy into a false narrative surrounding the situation. To them, Israel is the evil oppressor while the Palestinians are the helpless victims, while, in reality, Israel is the only democracy in the region which is facing constant threat from a bunch of theocrats that are willing to sacrifice their countrymen to create a PR point.
We need a two-state solution, but we also need to look at this situation objectively and not just take the propaganda from Gulf State oil money at face value. Most of the anti-Israel propaganda that is polluting the media is terribly slanted and serves a false narrative. In most cases, this false narrative is created by putting a dramatic headline reporting that Israel has fired missiles into Palestinian land or has started some massive police action that has oppressed hundreds of Palestinians—buried in the story, where skimming individuals are likely to miss, is the fact that those missiles are aimed at missile sites that have been launching dozens of missiles into Israeli cities and those police actions are to eliminate the people firing the missiles.
For example, the International New York Times just ran a headline which read “Israel Presses Air Barrage and Hamas Strikes Back.” In this headline, the fact is lost that Hamas started the bombardment of Israel and that it was Israel which retaliated—yes, Hamas has struck back against this retaliation, but they were the ones who initiated force in the first place and this headline overtly conceals this fact.

Let me make my feelings absolutely clear this war is heart breaking especial for the innocent that are being killed and I understand the worldwide condemnation against it but I don't understand why is the world total ignoring a much bigger humanitarian crisis in Syria today.....

Last week, the militant group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) forced 10,000 Christians living in the Iraqi city of Mosul to pack up their belongings and flee. The mass exodus of Christians comes as the largest forced displacement in the region since the Ottoman Empire drove tens of thousands of Armenians out of modern day Turkey during the nearly 100 years ago.
ISIS has been targeting Christians ever since it first got started. As a militant group fighting against both the forces of President Bashar al-Assad and rebel groups in Syria’s civil war, ISIS wreaked havoc on Syrian Christians, torching churches in the historic Christian city of Maaloula and kidnapping bishops. Still, Mosul’s large Christian population remained determined to remain in the city where their ancestors have lived for 1,600 years.
That all changed when ISIS issued a statement last Thursday ordering the city’s Christians to convert, pay a hefty religious tax, or face execution on Saturday. For the first month of their occupation, ISIS apparently did not carry out attacks with Christians as the main targets, instead focusing on Shiite Muslims. The militants invaded the city, Iraq’s second largest, in early June as part of a lightning advance through Iraq that took the world by surprise and vastly expanded the territory under the group’s control.
According to Ignatius Aphrem II, patriarch of the Syriac Orthodox Church in Antioch and All the East, most Christian families fled to Kurdistan or the surrounding Nineveh Plains, while others wound up in Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. The last 1,500 families to leave Mosul were robbed at ISIS checkpoints as they fled. “If Isis stays, there is no way the Christians can return,” Father Boutrous Moshi told reporters with the Guardian from a Christian area southeast of Mosul.

Thousands of Christians slaughtered and banished from the own country, the largest ethnic cleansing since the second world war and who's responsible? Terrorists brothers in arms with Hamas and every other terrorist organisation. It seems NO ONE CARES!!!

Friday, 25 July 2014


Explain the difference.
Paramilitaries fire a missile which brings down a civilian airliner over Ukraine.
They are widely condemned as murderous gangsters and war criminals who must be hunted down and brought to justice.
Another ruthless gang of paramilitaries fire missiles at a civilian airport in Israel.
They are hailed as heroic ‘resistance fighters’ and receive widespread support in the West.
Let’s just imagine, for a moment, that a rocket fired from Gaza had hit a plane coming in to land at Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv.
What if a British Airways jet had been brought down over Israel, with a similar loss of life to the 298 people who perished on Malaysian flight MH17?
Would it still be considered appropriate to hold yet another march through London this weekend, waving banners proclaiming ‘We are all Hamas now’?
Look, let me make one thing absolutely clear: what’s happening in Gaza is a terrible tragedy, especially the deaths of non-combatants. No one with a shred of humanity can fail to be disturbed by the plight of innocent children caught in the crossfire.
No, what depresses me is the one-sided apportioning of blame, the idea that Israel is the ‘aggressor’ in this conflict.
Everyone says they want an immediate ceasefire. Israel wants a ceasefire. But that will only occur when Hamas stops using Gaza as a launchpad to fire thousands of rockets aimed deliberately at killing Israeli civilians. Hamas has made it clear that isn’t going to happen.
Some people seem to think that because Israel has pretty effective air defences, it should absorb the pain and not retaliate.
Israel shelters behind sophisticated technology. Hamas hides behind women and children, in schools, hospitals and mosques.
Yet, as far as its useful idiots in Britain and Europe are concerned, Israel is the only one guilty of ‘war crimes’, no matter how many precautions it takes to avoid innocent deaths.
Hamas has no regard for human life, on either side. Every death is a propaganda victory, amplified by gullible sympathisers in the Western media.
But there is rarely any condemnation of this cynical campaign of terror, or of its oil-rich sponsors who want to wipe Israel off the face of the earth.
Is Iran going to stop supplying weapons to Hamas? No. Is Qatar going to stop bankrolling terrorism? What do you think?

So where are the demonstrations against Iran and Qatar? Come to that, where are the marches against Islamist slaughter in Syria and kidnapped schoolgirls in Africa?
Or, for that matter, the mass protests against Russia’s annexation of Crimea or Putin’s sponsorship of terrorism in Ukraine?
The Stop The War crowd are myopically selective in their indignation.
They’ll overlook all manner of atrocities in the Muslim world and in the former Soviet bloc, but become incandescent with fury when Israel exercises its inalienable right to self-defence.
Underlying all this is a nasty streak of anti-semitism, the unholy alliance between the self-styled ‘liberal’ Left and stone-age Muslim headbangers, which I exposed in a Channel 4 documentary a few years ago.
Fortunately, it hasn’t manifested itself as violently in this country as it has on the Continent, where it is never far from the surface — especially in France.
The Israeli ambassador in Berlin has compared the level of anti-Semitism to 1938.
But indiscriminate anti-Jewish sentiment is rising in Britain.
Security has been stepped up at Jewish schools and synagogues.
A shop in Manchester, for instance, is targeted by pro-Hamas demonstrators every day because it sells some goods made in Israel.
Again, though, this is knee-jerk stuff. There’s no consistency.
Protesters call for a boycott of Israel, but they’re not prepared to throw away their mobile phones, laptops and satellite set-top boxes which would be useless without Israeli technology.
They’re like the ‘anti-globalisation’ crowd, kitted out in Nike trainers, sipping skinny lattes from Starbucks and organising riots on iPhones. The absurd contradictions are lost on them.
Most of this is mindless posturing, unthinking exhibitionism, part of the modern curse of everyone living in their own movie. They all want to be in on the act, complete with fetching intifada scarf as fashion accessory.
There’s no calm analysis, no sober examination of the facts, just an incontinent outpouring of sentiment and emotion.
They can twist anything to suit their warped world view. We’ve even had a sitting Lib Dem MP, David Ward, announcing that he’d be firing rockets if he lived in Gaza.
Perhaps he’d like to do us all a favour and move there.
I keep wondering if we could ever win a conventional war these days.
You can just imagine the ‘We Are All Hamas Now’ crowd in 1944, marching on Downing Street.
Even as the doodlebugs were raining down on London, they’d be screaming that the D-Day invasion was ‘a disproportionate use of force’, wringing their hands over civilian casualties in Berlin and demanding that Churchill was prosecuted for war crimes.
Yet among the gormless rent-a-mob, there are dangerous people who wish not just Israel but all of us serious harm.
They’re the same hardliners who cheered as the planes hit the Twin Towers, who justified the London Transport bombings and want to impose Sharia law in Britain.
Israel is in the frontline of global jihad, but we’re on the list, too.
It’s all very well to lament that Israel is losing the battle for world opinion.
But Israel is fighting a real war, not a propaganda war, one that it can’t afford to lose.
And what if a rocket fired at Ben Gurion airport had hit a British Airways plane, killing all the passengers on board?
Does anyone seriously believe that Hamas would have genuinely regretted the innocent loss of civilian life, despite the widespread support it receives in Britain?
Of course not. We are all infidels now.

Many of this same protesters were seen in a protest against a new runway planned at Heathrow. So what does that tell you?


Spot the differences? No, I thought not!

Sunday, 20 July 2014


As you can imagine I have been asked many times over the weeks about my views on the tragedy that’s unfolding on the Israel, Gaza crises and have avoided opening a debate on my Facebook as I know whatever I say I will, understandably, be accused as being biased, why? Simply because I’m a Jew. But as the situation worsens I feel that I should air some of my thoughts.

Firstly death of innocent people no matter if they are Muslim, Christian or Jewish is a tragedy and its heartbreaking to see what’s happening in Gaza and Israel especially where young children are involved.
One question a get asked constantly is ‘Isn't Israel response disproportionate?' On the face of it, it certainly looks that way, that is until I heard a university professor on terrorism explain: “ If you’re in your home and a emotionally disturbed person starts banging at you door screaming he's going to come and kill you and your family and starts firing gun shots. Do you honestly believe the police should respond with ONE police officer, which of course would be proportioned, Or should they use all the resources they have at their disposal to respond?" Think about it. Another simple example would be; how many police officers would be sent to a shopping center if there was one crazed gunman? Please remember: THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS PROPORTIONED RESPONSE TO TERRORISM!

Please Do not be fooled that this latest war is based on the Palestinians conflict with Israel over settlements issue, this is so far from the truth. Hamas, as all experts know, is in a lot of difficulty since it lost its support and friendship from the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. An Israeli attack is about the only thing that could once again unite the people of Gaza under Hamas’s banner. Israeli bombing and shelling of Gaza is exactly what Hamas wants. And Hamas are succeeding in gathering world sympathy even after publishing pictures of the dead that were in fact photographed in Syria

Remember that Hamas is a whole owned subsidiary of Iran, who’s mandate is “To wipe Israel off the face of the earth
A peace deal worked out by the Egyptian government and accepted by Israel in return for Hamas rockets falling silent but was turned down by Hamas who would only accept any deal as long as it was for 10 years and include many impossible conditions (so ridicules were thees conditions that it was said they wanted 10 years of free tickets to Lady GaGa concerts!!!) Hamas knew they would never be met! When the British government agreed talks with the then terrorist organisation the IRA it was with the condition that they decommissioned its arms, which they did. Hamas are an Islamic fundamentalist organisation and like their fellow brothers in arms Al-Qaeda and Hezbollah etc, who only want to see the destruction of the western world as we know it, hanging gay people, stoning to death innocent young girls because THEY have been raped etc. Israel know Hamas will never talk peace by simply cutting off their tail , they need to cut off their heads to rid the Palestinians living in Gaza of these savages

Do Hamas really care about the Palestinians and if they did why would they put up their rocket launchers on top of civilian buildings and densely populated areas of Gaza, using innocent families including children as human shields? I, of course, understand the worldwide condemnation of Israel etc but where I get slightly confused is where are the humanitarians and all of you on Facebook, blogs and other social media when it comes to a much more serious humanitarian situation that is happening right now in the village of Yarmouke where 25,000 Palestinians are being starved to death??? Syrian forces loyal to President Bashar Assad have committed war crimes by deliberately starving to death civilian inhabitants of a Palestinian refugee camp during their bloody three-year war against an armed uprising, a leading human rights group says In total, two-thirds of Syria's Palestinian refugees - who numbered 530,000 before the country's civil war - have been displaced!!! Tens of thousands being dispersed to other countries. I have posted this tragedy many times on my Facebook and the response has almost been zero, Why? Is it because Israel is not involved? Why aren't you posting this on social media as well condemning the Syrians , why are we not seeing thousands marching the streets of London, Paris and Rome demanding help for these 530,000 Palestinians or does the world only care when Israel is involved?

This is a photograph of the thousands of Palestinians that are being starved to death in the city of Yarmouk

Israel is fighting a terrorist organisation, a terrorist organisation like those who murdered 295 innocent people the other day on board the Malaysian airline taken down by the terrorist rockets. Should terrorists be allowed to continue to use rockets, bombs and bullets to terrorise the world that we our children and grandchildren live in? Be assured They will continue to bring terror to our doorsteps if we keep sympathizing with them!!!

Let me conclude where I started; no matter what I say I will be accused of being biased and whatever facts I put on the table will be met a by a barrage of complaints about me being wearing blinkers etc but nothing could be further from the truth. I wish and pray this present conflict never happened, the death toll no matter on whatever side is tragic. My hope is that Hamas will be weakened to the point that the Palestinians in Gaza can get rid of them and deservedly have a truly democratic government who genuinely care for their people and who can sit down and work out a peaceful solution to this horrendous situation.

Thousands of Hamas rockets arrive daily into Israel, and thankfully because of Israel technology by introducing the iron dome to protect it’s people many in Israeli's would now be dead. WHAT WOULD YOU EXPECT YOUR GOVERNMENT TO DO IF HUNDREDS OF ROCKETS WERE FIRED DAILY INTO YOUR COUNTRY? Would you say DO NOT RESPOND? Think about it.

"Am I pro Israel?" That is not the question I should be asked now. My answer is "I am pro peace!" End ofF



There is a comment section at the bottom of this for your comments. Not ON MY Facebook as no one will know what your referring to unless they have read my blog

Thursday, 10 July 2014


It would be fair to say that Christmas 2007 was not a very happy time for me, the radio station was in deep financial trouble, my partners had all be disappeared leaving me to sort the mess out
, but it was imperative that I keep the spirits of my staff up and keep from them the severity of the situation we were in, why ruin their Christmas at least I still managed to keep paying the wages but it meant that I had a year of no salary again. One of the upsides that in many ways disguised the truth behind our financial situation was the success of yet another Telethon and early in January 2008 I presented yet another cheque to Cudeca this time for 72,000 Euro.

I had no idea what I was going to do as I flew off to London to host a charity night for the WJR. This was a brilliantly organised event which I swore at the time that I would do in Marbella but regretfully never got around to it. It was based on the phenomenally successful BBC TV program Strictly Come Dancing and my part was the host i.e the Bruce Forsyth’s job. There was six couples made up of six professional dancers and six very successful business personalities. The three women and three men had spent the last 4 months getting up every morning at about 4am to go into a London dance studio to learn from the professionals and practice their chosen routines. There was a huge demand for dinner tables made up of flag waving supporters for each of the dancers. Approx 600 attended the gala and raised a phenomenal £200,000!!

I stayed on in London for a few days to try to get some space between me and the radio station knowing a solution had to be found and had to be found quickly. I knew the banks wouldn’t lend without a thorough investigation and presides not having a licence I knew that the financial records left by Roberts accountants wouldn’t stack up. I decided on two courses of action. 1 I would approach a friend of mine, a wealthy business man, to see if he’d be interested in investing and 2 I needed to sell my 2 year old convertible Mercedes to at least make an effort to get some money into the tax office hoping that would allow some breathing space.

It was on New Years Day 2008 that the news broke that a 15 year old Irish girl, Amy Fitzpatrick had gone missing. It was shocking news for the expat communities especially around the Mijas area were the family lived and where she went missing. She had gone to a friend’s house just across the field from where she lived to keep her company on New Year’s Eve whilst she babysat her young brother. Later that evening she left to go home and hasn't been seen since. Her mother Audrey and her partner Dave Mahon made a plea on my radio show for her daughters safe return.

The Mirror reported:
It was reported that a shocking letter predicting Amy Fitzpatrick would go missing was sent to authorities before she disappeared.

The message appealing for help was sent in 2005, nearly three years before the 15-year-old vanished from her home in Spain.

The letter, written by the mum of Amy’s pal, was sent to the Irish embassy in Madrid and claims she wanted to move back to Ireland.

It reads: “It is probable she will disappear. Amie [sic] is scared for her safety.

The letter detailed how unhappy the 15-year-old schoolgirl was living in Spain.

The Sunday World reported:

Bombshell claims have surfaced about the whereabouts of Amy’s mobile phone at the time she disappeared, which could prove vital in the investigation.

The Sunday World can disclose that Debbie Rose and her daughter Ashley - whose house Amy left to walk home from and was never seen again - maintain the 15-year-old had her pink mobile phone with her when she left their Spanish pad on New Year’s Day 2008.

Five months later, Audrey produced the same phone during an interview on RTE’s Late Late Show.

She said she found it in their apartment,” says an insider.

How did that phone simply turn up when the last person to have it was Amy on the night she wet missing? Draw your own conclusions.

Another report on the missing Amy read:

Friends and relatives of Amy say the teen was constantly having fights with Mahon.

In one extract in her diary, on January, 19, 2006, Amy writes: “Dave is being a dick as normal, accusing me of taking money. WTF wud I do dat. He has no fuckin rite 2 say I tuk it da stupid, bald, ugly WANKER!

In another entry she says: “I stayed at Lisa’s last night cuz Davey wuz being a d**k as normal.”

(Photo: Mahon with Audrey Fitzpatrick)

The disappearance of Amy has always intrigued me, nothing ever added up, 2 and 2 always came to 5!. Interviewing Audrey and Dave, which I have done on many occasions in the preceding years after Amy's disappearance, always left me feeling uneasy,the I’s weren’t dotted and the T’s were never crossed. Mahon always gave me the creeps, I felt Audrey was hiding something but was to frightened to say anything.

Any Fitzpatrick's aunt Christine Kenny had been a guest on my radio show on a number of occasion quoting from Amy's Diary which, she says, reports about her living in a cardboard box with an arrow pointing to bins where she gets her food.
I smell of dog s**t and I haven’t had a shower in 2 years and I moved into my new house 2 day (sic) and it’s quite small and it’s not been painted.

Even if the entry into the dairy isn't 100% accurate it does allow us to have an insight into this poor young girls state of mind.

After the first interview with Kenny I received a threatening phone call from Mahon more or less telling me that I shouldn't have interviewed her. I told Mahon that it was none of his business who I interviewed, so don't dare call me in a threatening tone again!

The rest I'll leave it up to you to draw your own conclusions on the missing Amy Fitzpatrick.....

(Amy Fitzpatrick has never been found and in 2014 Audrey partner Dave Mahon was arrested and charged with the murder of Amy’s brother Dean which occurred in Dublin 2013).

Another highlight of the early part of 2008 was a surprise award that was made to me whilst broadcasting on St Patricks Day live from the Miramar Center sponsored by Guinness.
Tony Bell, president of The Irish Association of Spain made a surprise presentation of a certificate on behalf of the IAS bearing a ‘Seal of Excellence for his service to Irish People'. The papers reported that I was speechless as the crowed watching the show broke into spontaneous applause. Although this award did nothing to relive my financial woes, it certainly helped to lift my spirits even if it was only momentarily.

The Mercedes thankfully sold quickly for around 50K which was no sooner in my hand than it was winging its way over to the tax office! Breathing space I thought.
But the financial pressure was relentless, so I had no choice but to call a meeting with my wealthy friend. I explained the situation to him and of course, as an investor, he would need to know that REM FM hadn’t got or probably would never get a licence to broadcast. Meaning in short we could be shut at any time. Amazingly he agreed to help. Firstly to give Frank the 50,000 Euro he and Robert wanted to sever all ties with the radio station. Secondly to bankrupt the company and start a fresh leaving the depts behind. Maybe I was being naive at the time but I feared this solution would still leave me personally responsible for the huge tax depts as I was the administrator of the company. I also believed a simple name change to disguise my responsibility would be a bad move (little did I know then this was going to be a situation I was going to be forced into in the future!) It was a take it or leave it offer I just felt I couldn’t take the risk and turned the offer down.

I suppose word was out on the street that I was looking for an investor when I was approached by an acquaintance of mine Martin Nathan, Martin also a successful business man with a long association to the coast, in fact one of his children Josh Nathan was one of the stars of the defunct BBC soap Eldorado which was filmed here on the coast. Martin had approached me in the past to see if he could buy into H! Magazine but for some reason that hadn’t worked out. I don’t think he ever told me why he wanted to invest in the magazine and now the radio station but I assumed like a lot of successful business men who were spending most of their time in Marbella he was bored and wanted an interest. He agreed to buy out Robert and Franks 75% interest in REM and pay off the tax dept. This was the deal I needed which still left me with my 25% interest. His agreement was to pay off the depts of the company and oversee the financial administration and I would remain as MD in charge of staff, programming etc. To say I was relived would have been an understatement. I felt safe at last with a partner I believed I could trust.

I remember driving through Marbella’s main street with Martin in the car, he had just finished with the lawyers completing the deal to purchase the radio station, In fact we were driving back to the studio so I could officially welcome Martin into the business and introduce him to the staff . We were chatting away when I asked him what sort a role he would like to take up in the station. He said he wanted to be very much in the back ground. I suggested half jokingly that he should be the Chairman, after all chairman is usually to chair a board of directors as there was only the two of us I thought he wouldn’t have taken me seriously but I was wrong from then on he was going to be ‘The Chairman’ of REM FM!!! as crazy as that sounds but he was after all the man who saved the day and if he wanted to be referred to as Popeye The Sailor Man who was I to argue.

The summer of 2008 was more or less uneventful except more very stylish beach clubs were being opened hoping to follow the trend set by the arrival of the world famous Nikki Beach to Marbella.
(Photo: It's interesting to note; that in this picture beach goers were spending hundreds of Euros on expensive champagne and instead of drinking it they would spray it over each over!!!)
The financial markets were still struggling and property sales had more or less ground to a halt. The Costa del Sol and Costa Blanca were still attracting large numbers of tourists from UK, Ireland, Germany etc. Hotels booking were only slightly down on previous good years, so all in all the Costas was holding up.

Although I could relax a little now that I had got my investor and new partner there was a lot of work to be done to make sure the radio station could now recover financially and new incentives to attract advertisers were being offered. I needed to find something new something fresh to attract new income into the radio station and I found that with an idea I called 50/50 Friday. The thinking behind this was that every Friday morning from 10am to 12pm we would offer 50 vouchers at 50% discount to be used on restaurants, hotels , boutiques, hairdressers etc. This is how it works: we approach a country hotel and ask them if they would like a free weeks advertising on the radio in return for giving us 50, 50% discount vouchers i.e the hotel would give us the vouchers with a value of 200 Euro we would offer it at 100€ and in return for the free weeks advertising we would keep the entire 100€. It was simply a win, win for both the radio station the advertiser and the listener leaving us with a clear profit of around 5,000€ in a few short hours. I remember the first Friday we tried this and sold out all 50 vouchers in the first hour. This we believed was a winner but unfortunately after a couple of months our listeners tired of the idea and we stopped it.

The 2008 WOW Factor photo Presenters Maurice Boland and Hannah Murray with the judges including Tony Cowell and Jason Gardner

Being in the depth of the economic crises I was beginning to worry about the end of the years Cudeca Telethon and needed to come up with something new, something refreshing to keep the interest of our listeners and general public alike. For a while I had been thinking of running a charity talent competition, I had done this successfully over the years going back to Rudys in the early 90’s with Entertainer Of The Year Show, then on Radio with Pop Idol The Challengers and Reach for The Stars, but if I was going to do this I wanted to do it bigger and better than before after all the days of programs like Opportunity Knocks have well gone and been replaced by X Factor, American Idol etc so based on that I came up with the idea of The WOW Factor.

I have always believed that my shows, whether on radio, television or live on stage should be of international standard, with that in mind this is how I wanted the WOW Factor to be. Firstly I needed a venue of international standard, I remembered how impressed I was when I hosted Club La Costa's 10th Anniversary celebrations at the Hotel Torrequebrada’s casino theater, its the closest thing we had to a Las Vegas theater and also had the feel of a large TV theater studio with seating up 500 for dinner. It was perfect and before long I had booked it. I then put a small committee together to help look after ticket sales, table layouts, programs etc etc, added to that the very best of sound and lighting engineers and set designers and choreographers, make up and hair stylists, finally I hired Steve Shappell an expert at musical theater production to direct the show and to help turn the stage into something close to the UK televisions X Factor set. Now I needed judges, I wanted famous names to help me sell all 500 tickets.

I knew I couldn’t get Simon Cowell but I also knew he had a brother Tony Cowell(see photo) also in the entertainment business, a phone call or two a touch of Irish charm and I secured a Cowell!
Next on my hit list I needed a 'mister nasty' because that's what I belive makes the X Factor so successful. The person I felt sure would fit that role would be Jason Gardner the nasty judge from televisions hugely successful show Dancing on Ice, using the name Cowell as leverage I persuaded Jason to come. I needed a local judge and that was the stunning Laura Kryer who along with her husband ran a very successful music production company. in fact it was her husband Paul Sedkowski who recorded the WOW Factor jingles, stabs etc. and finally my good friend and the WOW Factor sponsor Bassem Hadar, the man I turned down in favor of Nathan to invest into REM FM, who filled the role as chairman of the judging panel . It was now time to start running a series of ads on the radio announcing various audition venues and before long the whole Costa was into a WOW Factor mood, it seemed everyone was talking about the WOW Factor. After months of auditions meeting hundreds of singers on the way, it all came down to the final 10 who made it to the live show at the Torrequebrada Casino Theatre.

Martin Woods was in charge of all the video production and like the X Factor in UK I wanted each contestant filmed in a 30 second segment to be shown on the giant screen on the stage prior to them coming out. When Martin first brought the videos for me to see I rejected one after another saying I needed tears and sad stories I wanted to be as close to the original X Factor as possible, Martin went away and as usual did a superbly professional job on each of the finalist’s videos, tears and all!!!
I chose REM’s Hannah Murray to co-host the show with me , a young girl that I gave a job as an assistant to Mary Harbo on the radio on occasions allowing her to read the weather forecast, eventually she started to fill in for Mary whilst she was on holidays. So impressed was I by Hannah that I gave her, her own show.(Photo: Hanna and myself having a laugh on stage)

This is part of a report written by Michele Eusdon for her newspaper the Euro Weekly News: As the lights dimmed in the auditorium and before the show got properly under way, the song ‘Somebody’s Lost Princess’ was performed by the two girls, Georgia and Hollie aged 15 and 16, who wrote the song paying special tribute to the still-missing teenager Amy Fitzpatrick. Amy’s mother, Audrey, told The Euro Weekly News: “It was an amazing start to the night, for these two kids to do this was so heart-warming and touching for us. It was very emotional as when they sang, behind them on a huge screen photos of Amy were being shown". The Euro Weekly News went on to report: There aren’t enough words I can say to thank them and to thank Maurice Boland for arranging this; it just boosts us and helps us feel a little bit more confident in the search for Amy, knowing there are people like that out there helping us.

The ten finalists individually sung their chosen songs in front of a large TV screen that, before each one, showed a brief video of them talking about how they too had been touched by tragedy in their lives (in the same vein as the X Factor). After the initial round, the panel of judges retired to the jury room to pick the best five to go through to the second round. During the second half, a very special performance took place when all ten finalists and the 15 runners-up, all dressed in white, performed a medley of songs from the hit musical ‘Mamma Mia’.

Before the final five were announced, Hannah Murray, surprised Maurice by displaying photographs of him from when he was young (See photo), in a sneaky attempt at a practical joke. One which bounced right back at her as Maurice knew her plans all along and as she was stood on the stage he told her to look behind her as photos of her younger self were being shown on the big screen. Maurice laughs: “She thought she was setting me up but she had no idea I had been in touch with her parents two weeks before to get these photos of her. She nearly collapsed on stage!”

The next days press reported: “The evening was without doubt a stunning success. The calibre of the finalists would match any COPYCAT television production. The professionalism of the whole event was of the highest possible standard. However, the greatest thrill was to see over 800 expatriates supporting an event which is to raise money to save the cancer care hospice.
Mr Maurice Boland – I simply do not know how he does it, but on behalf of everyone who has benefited from the monies he has raised over the years, thank God he does. Without doubt, he is the man with the WOW factor! Thank you, Maurice

The Sur newspaper reported: The Wow Factor! Yes, ‘WOW’ was the word on everybody’s lips after the final of the competition which took place last Sunday evening at the Sala Fortuna in the Hotel Torrequebrada. The spectacular show was hosted by Maurice Boland, Cuudeca's Honorary Patron, and Hannah Murray of and was produced by Steve Shappelle.

Again the Telethon was a great success and added to the WOW Factor money REM’s charity contribution to Cudeca 2008 was approx 90,000€ !!!!

When the year started I honestly didn’t think we’d see 2009 and now it looks like we are about to make it....

To be continued.....

Jade one of the 2008 WOW Factor finalists The final two Geneva and Natasha head to head to decide the winner