Rachel Haynes

Boston, UK (1971). Rachel has a degree in Modern Languages from Newcastle University and a postgraduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. After moving to Malaga in 1994 she joined the SUR in English team in 1996 and has been Editor since 2014.

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recent published articles

06/09/2019 11:30


Laugh or cry?

One of the many highlights of this summer was a rare opportunity to do "touristy stuff" in London. So, just a few weeks ago there I was standing in that very chamber with its scruffy green benches that has been the scene of great drama this week. I

02/08/2019 12:55


Summer heat in the galleries

The summer is the perfect opportunity for residents as well as visitors to soak up not just the sun, but also the culture. Malaga's art galleries and museums have put the city in the forefront in recent years, filling columns in travel and art public

07/06/2019 19:02


Learning English and other stories

The Escuela Oficial de Idiomas (official language school) gives its students of English extra optional homework once a year: to enter its annual short story competition. While organised from the Malaga school, the contest is open to students of Engli

07/06/2019 17:17


Full marks from SUR in English

We have to go back to January to find the start of this story. That was when teachers at the international schools in southern Spain and Gibraltar received their annual emails inviting their students to send in work for the annual SUR in English Educ

07/06/2019 14:43


Everyone's acting

While some are still digesting the results of the 26 May local elections - and others have forgotten them already - we are still in that limbo period when the councillors have been elected but not yet installed in their seats. More importantly, in

10/05/2019 16:02


Three days

When they tell you you're not going home, your immediate world falls apart. How can you not go home? What will you do with the family? And what about the work you left half-finished when you went to A&E to get an X-ray just to rule out something more

06/05/2019 19:06


Cudeca Hospice prepares for 17th fundraising Walkathon

The promenade in Benalmádena Costa looks set to be invaded by hundreds of red T-shirt-clad walkers this Sunday for the 17th edition of the Cudeca Walkathon. In order to raise funds for the Cudeca hospice charity and awareness of its work, particip

08/03/2019 11:53


Equal opportunities - in the home too

Today, international women's day, will see men and women joining marches and events to support the feminist cause: women should have the same rights, power and opportunities as men. On the surface we can argue that at least in developed countries t

27/02/2019 18:01


Getting the most out of youth

Have you seen them? They've been spotted in the streets of Fuengirola, Benalmádena or Malaga, on mountain paths in Mijas, the Sierra de las Nieves or Granada, at the checkouts at Iceland, or cooking burgers on the beach near the Sohail castle. They m

15/02/2019 14:18


The world looks on

Living in Spain, however integrated we might be, if we come from another country we'll always be outsiders on the inside. That, however, gives us the advantage of looking at current affairs from both vantage points: we know what our friends, neighbou

25/01/2019 17:44


25 January 2016: The day the earth moved

If you were in the Malaga area exactly three years ago today and thought the earth moved - that's because it did. It was 5.22am on a Monday morning when people were woken by an earthquake of magnitude 6.3, the biggest to hit the area in more than

25/01/2019 13:41


Two syllables

I've been trying to remember the first time I heard the word Brexit. Back then, whenever it was, I saw it as just another clever, but at the same time silly, linguistic invention that was doing the rounds of social media. Something that would never a

11/01/2019 13:35


British consul urges UK nationals to be properly prepared for Brexit

This week has seen the start of a series of meetings at which the British consul in Andalucía, Charmaine Arbouin, aims to update UK nationals in Andalucía about Brexit and what it could mean for them. COSTA MEETINGS Benalmádena. 24 January. Edifici

07/12/2018 13:25


The right change?

A read of the literature sent by post to every voter by the main political parties before the Andalusian election last weekend made you want to vote for them all. All four were going to do away with corruption, cut down hospital waiting lists, improv

01/12/2018 14:09


On the final straight of the campaign trail

It's been smiles all round on these last few days of the campaign trail as the candidates for seats on the Andalusian parliament aim to round up last-minute support from voters. The regional election takes place on Sunday when 6,541,722 citizens of A

19/11/2018 10:35


Lions support group takes to the streets for World Diabetes Day

The Mijas La Cala Lions have been out and about this week to help the club's Diabetic Support Group spread the word about the illness. Over several days this week the group is offering free glucose testing to members of the public, starting in La Cal

09/11/2018 15:08


Interests: travel

I haven't worked out the exact figure but I would estimate that nine out of ten British CVs that include interests at the end, give travel as one of them. Whether by travel people refer to a backpacking trip around the world or a train ride to Skegne

29/10/2018 13:49


Rotary beetle-drive challenge attracts hundreds and raises thousands

If someone told the designers of the Marbella congress centre that one day it would be filled with hundreds of people of different nationalities rolling dice and drawing insects on pieces of paper, they would have probably laughed in their face. R

15/10/2018 16:08


Keep it down, please

The mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, suggested at an event last week that the way to solve the problem of noise pollution in the city centre was for people to keep their voices down. "In the Mediterranean culture we speak in very loud voice

15/10/2018 15:57


Chasing a world record with six legs

Breaking a world record and getting your name in the grand Guinness book is probably something on a lot of people's bucket lists. For a charitable organisation it is a great way of raising funds, drawing attention to a good cause and having fun all a

21/09/2018 12:12


21 September 1994: World Alzheimer's Day is launched

World Alzheimer's Day has been celebrated on 21 September since 1994. The awareness day was launched at the opening of the annual Alzheimer's Disease International (ADI) conference (held on that date in 1994 in Edinburgh) to mark the tenth anniversar

31/08/2018 18:51



The last week of August is always an odd one - there's never a great deal going on as the newsmakers squeeze the last drop out of their summer holidays before they go back to the office. This week, however, has been a colourful if not eventful one.

24/08/2018 17:33


Do it for the money, if not for the planet

Plastic has become the dirty word of 2018 as it seems that the message that the planet is suffering thanks to the use of the stuff is making its way into the mass social conscience. Of course everyone has known for years that the miracle material of

10/08/2018 19:27


10 August 1974: Spain lifts ban on women bullfighters

In 1974, Spain was still governed by a dictatorship and Francisco Franco, albeit in poor health, would live for more than a year. However that did not stop some law changes to bring the country slowly into a world of equal opportunities. One of thi

20/07/2018 14:58


Tourism rules

Tourism is what makes the world go round - or at least what makes us go round the world - and even the most virtual of virtual technologies is not going to stop millions of people packing their cases for a welcome change of scenery. We've now hit t

22/06/2018 18:03


Equal footing

Speaking to soprano and human rights activist Barbara Hendricks last week prior to her concert at the Nerja Cave festival was both uplifting and depressing. On one hand, her positive attitude and confidence that citizen activism is making the worl

01/06/2018 14:08


Long life

The scientist Ginés Morata, who brought his theories to a lecture in Malaga last week, believes that we could live to be 600 or 700 years old. In other words, science and technology are developing at such speed that we are constantly having to rethin

27/04/2018 15:08


Keeping count

This has been an exciting week for people who love facts and figures - journalists among them - who need to pull a statistic out of their hats to support every argument or assertion. On Tuesday Spain's national statistics institute (INE) released the

23/03/2018 15:56



There's an air of anticipation in most large towns and cities in this region this week. Rows of chairs have appeared along central streets, people of all ages are chatting excitedly, planning excursions, discussing routes; some are having their hair

09/03/2018 14:09


Equality and sharing

Yesterday's strike for International Women's Day was more symbolic than anything else. It's impossible to really prove to what extent the world would stop turning if all women downed tools. Yesterday women in Spain did make their presence felt, rathe

02/02/2018 12:26


Getting there

Having the car you take for granted suddenly forced off the road for several weeks sheds a whole new light on how we move from one place to another. Forced to find an alternative to just grabbing the keys and running out the door, I've recently had a

19/01/2018 14:14


Celebrating health

It's January, it's cold - even on the Costa del Sol - and pharmacies are busier than ever. Hands up who hasn't had a sniffle, a full-blown cold, or worse still the flu, since Christmas. Not many, I'm sure. When the pharmacy doesn't have the solutio

29/12/2017 20:06


2017: a rollercoaster year

JANUARY Courts Animal shelter boss sentenced in cruelty case The former president of the Torremolinos animal shelter Parque Animal, Carmen Marín, was sentenced to three years and nine months in prison for cruelty to animals, falsification of do

01/12/2017 14:10


"On a day-to-day basis it's business as usual in Catalonia"

Laura Byrne, regional vice-president of the British Chamber of Commerce for Barcelona, was in Marbella this week to attend a breakfast meeting of the Andalucía branch of the organisation, chaired by the local vice-president, Derek Langley. Byrne, 4

24/11/2017 13:14


Foreign residents discuss tax issues at Mijas seminar

SUR in English and Linea Directa called on the expertise of Pedro Fernández this week for another essential expat advice seminar on the subject of taxation. After the success of the seminar held at the recent Home Fair in Marbella, this week's even

17/11/2017 13:20


Essential tax advice at SUR seminar in Mijas

Pedro Fernández, partner at Garrigues the leading Spanish law firm, will be speaking at the Linea Directa and SUR in English Essential Expat Advice Seminar in the Salón de Actos in La Cala de Mijas town hall on 22 November at 12 noon. Fernández sp

10/11/2017 16:20


We're not the only ones in the world

Tourism is so important for this region and the figures are increasing every year, with "record-breaking" appearing in numerous news headlines. However the industry knows it can't sit back on its laurels as the rising fugures won't automatically cont

07/11/2017 15:18


An evening in honour of the tourism industry

"Andalucía is in the hearts of the British," said the ambassador Simon Manley, speaking at the SUR in English annual dinner in London on Monday. This year the event, organised as a celebration of that special relationship between British tourists and

03/11/2017 13:04


"Wealth tax is the bête noire of the Spanish system," says expert

Tax expert Pedro Fernández of Spain's leading law firm Garrigues spoke to an audience invited by SUR in English and Línea Directa at the Home Fair in Marbella on Saturday. Fernández ran through the different types of taxation foreign residents in S

27/10/2017 11:09


Costa organisations welcome new expat support website

British expat organisations on the Costa del Sol have welcomed news of a new website designed to offer support to older and vulnerable members of the community. SUPPORT IN SPAIN Website: Languages: English and Spanish Se

21/10/2017 15:43



Perhaps it's rather naïve of me to think that people ought to be able to love, or at least tolerate, one another and live happily ever after in peace and harmony. That's the message drummed into children at school isn't it? Everyone should be treat

01/09/2017 17:42


A month on Marbs

Today is the first day of September and many workers who stick to Spanish holiday traditions will be going back to the office after a 31-day break. This month-long holiday, that nowadays fewer people can, or even want, to take all in one go, gives th

07/07/2017 20:17


The birth of Pamplona's San Fermín festival

'1de enero, 2 de febrero, 3 de marzo, 4 de abril, 5 de mayo, 6 de junio, 7 de julio... ¡San Fermín!" This popular Spanish song, known all over the country, shows how today's date can mean only one thing in Spain. 7 July is the feast of San Fermín, th

12/06/2017 12:57


Press Club rewards communication skills at gala dinner

The Costa Press Club announced the winners of its Communicator 2016 awards at its 15th anniversary gala dinner on Thursday evening. The association for international journalists on the Costa del Sol launched its annual awards in 2006 with the aim o

02/06/2017 11:54


2 June 2014: A turning point in Spanish history: the King abdicates

On the morning of 2 June 2014 newsrooms around the country were buzzing with anticipation. La Moncloa palace, the official residence of the Spanish prime minister, had called an unexpected and urgent press conference. There would be an announcement,

19/05/2017 19:43


The place with no weather

Spain's Iberian neighbour has shown that it can produce more than tanned footballers this week. Yes, Portugal finally added a Eurovision Song Contest win to its achievements, reminding the rest of Europe that part of this peninsula we now call home i

12/05/2017 13:07


The vulnerable age

This week's SUR in English contains at least two articles that make us stop and think of the most senior members of our communities and families. In her second Brit Back column, in which she recounts the ups and downs of her rediscovery of the UK aft

28/04/2017 16:55


A thought for the good eggs

It's April, it's 2017, but some of the headlines in this week's news are probably almost identical to others published five, ten or fifteen years ago. Politicians are arrested under suspicion of corrupt practice, embezzlement and generally abusing th

28/04/2017 16:42


28 April 1770: 18th century stage actress Rita Luna is born in Malaga

Rita Alfonso García was born in Malaga by chance. Her parents, originally from northern Spain, were both orators, taking their recitals from stage to stage. They were living in the southern Spanish city in the spring of 1770 when Rita, one of three s

31/03/2017 15:11


A daunting delivery

It's been nine months now since that morning at the end of June when we were jolted awake by the news that the thing had been conceived. It came as a shock to many of us here in Spain, but others supported the creation; there was no question of abort

17/03/2017 10:28


17 March 2009: Villanueva de la Concepción becomes municipality 101

The province of Malaga lost its round number - exactly 100 - of municipalities on 17 March 2009. After years of campaigning, the small town of Villanueva de la Concepción finally gained its independence from Antequera, becoming municipality number 10

24/02/2017 12:01


Former British consul, Thomas Tuite, dies aged 93

Former British consul, Thomas Tuite, died in Malaga on 18 February at the age of 93. He was born Thomas Robert Henry Stratford Tuite in Dublin, Ireland, in 1923, son of an Anglo-Irish army officer. Before settling in Malaga, Thomas worked for t

17/02/2017 17:57


Behind a surname

This week, Nick Clegg's Spanish wife Miriam González Durántez remarked on the irony of being addressed as "Mrs Clegg" on an invitation to an event organised to mark international women's day. Understanding surname acquisition is one of those issue

16/02/2017 11:08


A love affair stronger than Brexit

Just over six months ago, a lot of us in Spain thought that we were in a bad dream, that something surreal was happening but that we would soon wake up and discover with relief that the UK didn't vote for Brexit after all. Then for a while perhaps we

20/01/2017 16:56


Small town, big world

This week, somewhat drowned out by the news of the snow - and of course the new SUR in English website - the rumblings have continued to emanate from the tremulous local political scene in Alhaurín el Grande. While the opposition prepares en bloc t

17/01/2017 19:34


Welcome to the new

SUR in English has been a pioneer throughout its more than 30 years of providing information to English-speaking residents and visitors in southern Spain. After being the first successful newspaper to be published in English on the Costa del Sol back

17/01/2017 09:21


Retired SUR in English editor Liz Parry in New Year's Honours list

The 2017 New Year's Honours List includes a familiar name for British residents in southern Spain. The former editor of SUR in English, Liz Parry, has been awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to British nationals living in Andalucía.