Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Corfu in 1962: Check out the videos

I found three videos that I want to share with you. All those three are very interesting as they present Corfu at early 60s, when tourism in the island was in its early stages but it didn't lack the quality.

Click on the links below, taken from the British Pathe website:

I hope you enjoyed them and make you compare that distant era with today - is tourism better now than 50 years before? Is it more affordable for more and more tourists than yesterdays? Is Corfu as well preserved as in the 60s? If not, why and what are the reasons for that decay?

Monday, 28 September 2009

Vandalism at Esplanade's historic bandstand...

People who passed through Esplanade last Saturday morning sadly witnessed the vandalism of the bandstand's lattice-work. That was the last incident of Esplanade's vandalism, after the grafitties on the monument of Eptanisos and on the paved areas of the square. What is considered one of the most well-known sights of our island, is being vandalised often by a bunch of spoilt teenagers who apparently haven't given the proper education of respecting the history of their homeland.

*Photos taken from "Maties stin Kerkira" blog.

What should be done, in my opinion, is to patrol the area more intensively and impose a "zero tolerance" policy towards those vandals who is doing the best they can to make Corfu look unattractive and "third world" in those difficult times we are getting through.

Thursday, 24 September 2009

Derelict houses and side streets of Ioannou Theotoki street (former Avramiou street)

The area which surrounds Ioanni Theotoki street and connects Sarocco square with the New Port is known is colloquially known as "Pallada". Pallada was an old oil factory on the site where the bus station is now situated. Along I. Theotoki street, there were some houses which were built by immigrants from Asia Minor in the 1920s. The area was also known as "Prosfigika", a name which was given to many places in Greece reserved for the Asia Minor greek immigrants. There were many of them in the area, but now most of them disappeared and new 1950s- 1960s apartment blocks were built.

I strolled the small lane called "Ekti parodos Ioannou Theotoki", next to the Ionian University building. That small lane used to be full of those. Now, only a couple of them still stand.

Above, someone can see the looming presence of the also unhappily derelict old building of the Elderly Home, a beautiful building on the top of Avramiou hill. I really hope this edifice will soon be renovated and used as a museum or as recreational area.

Walking across Ioanni Theotoki street, there is an empty piece of land which serves as a parking. At the end of this place, there is a small hill on which another derelict building stands. It is in a really bad condition, as you can see from the picture below.

Standing on the top of this low hill, a part of new port and the bus station is visible and looking to the other side, the Ionian University building can be seen.

There is also a set of stairs lead to the top of Markora street. Climbing up these stairs, you can get a panoramic view of Avramiou area.

Finally, after ascending the stairs and looking towards the New Fortress, the new market under construction and the nearby temporary market are under our feet.

Also the symbol of the old Venetian republic, the winged lion holding a book is proudly standing on the walls of the New Fortress, witnessing the prior status of Corfu as a Venetian stronghold at the entrance of Adriatic sea.