Topless beach ’causes town to go bust’: Locals are forced to shop among naked men and women at Europe’s largest nudist camp ‘after it received so many government perks local stores could not compete and had to close’
- The new mayor has filed a legal complaint against her predecessors for ‘bribery’
- She claims previous mayors handed unfair perks to the Euronat nudist colony
Europe’s largest nudist resort has received so much unfair funding that it has left its surrounding seaside town in near destitution, the town’s new mayor has claimed.
Florence Legrand, mayor of Grayan-et-l’Hôpital near Bordeaux, said nudist colony Euronat has received 9 million euros (£7.8 million) in perks that it has left the town where it is situated nearly bare.
Shops and restaurants in the town have closed and dwindled down to just a total of two, while Euronat is filled with nearly thirty outlets.
The situation has become so bad that locals are now forced to do their shopping within the resort beside naked men and women .
Legrand said she has now filed a legal complaint against her mayoral predecessors for ‘bribery’ in which she claims they handed unfair perks to the nudist colony which has subsequently left the outer town in a state of decline.
Florence Legrand, mayor of Grayan-et-l’Hôpital (pictured), claims nudist colony Euronat has received 9 million euros (£7.8 million) in perks that it has left the outer town nearly bare
Shops and restaurants in Grayan-et-l’Hôpital have rapidly shut down in recent years. There were previously seven outlets in the village with a population of 1,500. This is now down to just two.
But within the nudist colony, Euronat is filled with some 28 stores inside 830 acres.
The nudist resort is home to 15,000 guests who are willing to bare it all during the summer months.
‘You have to want to see people stark naked,’ said one unnamed local woman who told of her shopping predicament to Le Parisien. She confirmed that villagers were allowed to keep their clothes on while doing their shopping.
The new mayor’s legal complaint accuses her mayoral predecessors of repeatedly handing the resort a number of illicit financial breaks, The Telegraph reported.
Grayan-et-l’Hôpital has been represented by the same political party for the past 75 years before Legrand’s election.
Legrand contends that fake ‘charges’ were added to Euronat’s rent payment to the town. The resort currently pays Grayan-et-l’Hôpital €550,000 (£478,000) each year. This is considerably less than the €917,000 (£798,000) estimated by the new local government.
The estimate means that Grayan-et-l’Hôpital should have received €20.5 million (£17.8 million) in rent since 1975. It has received just €14.5 million (£12.6 million) in payment.
Mayor Legrand said: ‘These are sums that were lacking for the development of the town,’ The Telegraph reported.
Euronat in Grayan-et-l’Hôpital (pictured) is home to 15,000 guests who are willing to bare it all during the summer months
The lease of the land occupied by Euronat was also extended by a former mayor from 70 years to 99 years – something Legrand has also sought answers over.
Bordeaux’s prosecutor has since opened a preliminary inquiry into Legrand’s filing. They will look at whether officials illegally granted ‘an exemption or deduction of duties, contributions, taxes or public taxes in violation of legal or regulatory texts’.
If found guilty, officials could spend a maximum of five years in prison and receive a €500,000 fine.
Lawyers instructed by the town said they hoped to ‘determine how and why a private company was able to benefit from such largesse and seize the sovereignty of a municipality at a low price to the detriment of its citizens’.
Euronat has denied any wrongdoing.
‘We have had 50 years of peaceful and normal relations with the preceding municipalities,’ Euronat director Jean-Michel Lorefice said.
Both Lorefice and the former mayor of the town – who also denies any wrongdoing – have in return filed charges for slander.
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