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Barcelonas and Beyond #002 - Monday 12th to Sunday 18th September
September 10, 2016

Welcome to the second issue of Barcelonas and Beyond, which covers the week Monday 12th to Sunday 18th September. This week we feature Sunday's Diada 2016 and much much more.

I send the newsletter every Saturday with information for the coming week starting the following Monday mixture of what to do information, including festivals, concerts and of course football so please feel free to pass this email on to your friends and contacts.

La Diada - Catalan National Day

Although this issue is supposed to cover Monday 12th to Sunday 18th September, it's very difficult to make any predictions as Sunday September 11th is La Diada, the National Day of Catalonia. As I said last week, the day commemorates the fall of Barcelona after a fifteen-month siege to the Franco-Castilian troops of Felipe V on September 11th 1714 and the subsequent loss of all of Catalonia's rights. The laws were abolished, the government institutions were closed down and even the Catalan language was made non grata.

La Diada began to be celebrated at the end of the 19th century and, whilst the official events are fairly typical national pomp and ceremony, it has generally been accompanied by a demonstration that has called, if not for outright independence, at least for more autonomy for Catalonia.

Click Here to read about the history of La Diada.

Since 2012, the demonstrations have been been organised by the the pro-independence groups the Assemblea Nacional Catalana and Omnium Cultural and have rallied upwards of 1.5 million people, normally in Barcelona. This year La Diada demonstration is going to be celebrated not only in Barcelona, but also in the provincial capitals of Tarragona and Lleida and the northern towns of Salt and Berga.

La Diada is a momentous political and cultural event here in Catalonia so depending on whether it's a success or failure, there will inevitably be some fallout. What's particularly interesting this year is that the pro-independence parties in the Parliament of Catalonia have a majority of 72 out 135 MPs and the main party Junts pel Sí (Together for Yes) plans to declare independence from Spain sometime in 2017.

Click here to read about this year's Diada and find out how to register.

Click Here to visit the www. updates and blog page

You can find out much more about the historical background to Catalonia's claims for independence in my 2014 book Catalonia Is Not Spain: A Historical Perspective
Find out more about the book here

This Week in Catalonia Radio Show

Every Wednesday at 12 0'clock midday, I host a radio show on Barcelona City FM 107.3 with my colleague Jordi Vilanova.

This week we'll be talking to Slovenian lawyer Ana Stanic. Ana is an expert on the European Union and international law and her father was one of the organisers of the independence referendum in Slovenia in 1990 so she has a lot to say about the situation in Catalonia. I'm sure we'll be discussing Sunday's Diada demonstration.

If you miss the show, I generally post the podcast of the show to our website late on Wednesday.

This Week's Football

On Tuesday September 13th with kick-off at 8.45 pm, Barça start this season's Champions League campaign at home against Celtic FC whilst at 1 pm on Saturday they play Leganés away.

The weekend's big game, though, is at RCD Espanyol's Cornellà stadium at 8.45 pm on Sunday when the Pericos face the mighty Real Madrid.

Click Here for FC Barcelona Tickets

Click Here for RCD Espanyol Tickets

This Week's Historical and Cultural Highlights

Monday September 12th

On Septmber 1213, at Muret, Llenguadoc, Occitània, the Catalano-Occitan troops faced the French crusaders led by Simon de Montfort and in the resulting the Battle of Muret between Pere I the Catholic, Count of Barcelona, died from sword wound leaving his five-year-old son the future Jaume I to take the Catalano-Aragonese throne.

September 12th is also La Diada or National Day of Mallorca.
Read More About September 12th

Tuesday September 13th

On September 13th 2004, the Spanish government formally asked the European Union for a reform of the linguistic regime so that Catalan could be an official language.
Read More About September 13th

Wednesday September 14th

On September 14th 1855 was the official date of the founding of the engineering company La Maquinista Terrestre i Marítima, which would become one of the most important companies in 19th century Barcelona.

The site of the original factory in Sant Andreu is now home to La Maquinista shopping centre.
Read More About September 14th

Thursday September 15th

On September 15th 1978, the great FC Barcelona and RCD Español goalkeeper, Ricardo Zamora Martínez, died. Something of a polemical figure, he was undoubtedly a great player and the Zamora trophy is given to the Liga goalkeeper who lets in the fewest goals each season.
Read More About September 15th

Friday September 16th

On September 16th 2005, ICANN approved the domain .cat for the Catalan cultural and linguistic community. As far as I know, Catalonia is the only country that is not a state to have its own three-letter domain.
Read More About September 16th

Saturday September 17th

On September 17th 1968, the footballer and FC Barcelona coach, Tito Vilanova, was born in Bellcaire d'Empordà, Baix Empordà, Girona. Tito was second-in-command to Pep Guardiola from 2008 to 2012 before taking over as first team coach. He sadly died of cancer in April 2014.
Read More About September 17th

Sunday September 18th

On September 18th 1714, a week after the fall of Barcelona, Cardona, the only Catalan town still resisting Felipe V's Franco-Castilian army, was ordered to surrender. This put an end to the 13-year War of the Spanish Succession in Catalonia, although Mallorca was to continue to resist until July 2015.
Read more about September 18th

Anyway, that's about it for now, if you want to keep up to date with all the new information I'm creating, make sure you visit regularly.

All the best

Simon Harris

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