EXCLUSIVE By James Bryce

A COUPLE forced out of their ‘dream’ home to make way for a new highway say the stress of the situation is slowly destroying them.

Graeme Mullis, 67, and his wife Jacquline, 56, were served with a Compulsory Purchase Order on their two-bedroom house in Salobrena in June as part of development plans for the A7.

They were given a month to move out and agreed a compensation package of 150,000 euros, which they were told would not be paid for at least two years.

But despite being reassured by a government official in Almunecar that the CPO contract could be used to secure a bank loan in the interim, the expats have been turned down by six Spanish banks.

Mullis, originally from South Wales, said: “To go from being a very happy couple living in what we felt was our dream home to living on a very low budget with so many extra costs, we feel is slowly destroying us.”

The couple is currently living in a small terraced house in Lanjaron – part owned by English teacher Jacquline – but they stress it is only a temporary solution and they may be forced to return to the UK.

“Everything I have worked so hard for all my life has been taken away overnight, we don’t know which way to turn.”


  1. Ah the good old Spanish legal system in action. Chuck retiree out of home whilst not paying them a cent and then add insult to injury by denying them any way of purchasing a new home in the interim. Property investors take note. “Assurances by government officials” lol, what the officials who cannot even work out if a house is legal or not? What a joke.

  2. I can understand, tho’ not necessarily agree with, CPO’s. To not compensate for 2 years is an absolute disgrace – but then, this is Spain. To suggest that they can get a bank loan on the strength of a CPO is only OK if they get no interest charge on the loan, or that any interest is paid for by the authority issuing the CPO.

  3. …….. a CPO from Almuñerca Municipo isn’t worth the paper its printed on …….. Spanish banks may be greedy opportunistic SoB’s but they are not stupid.

    Best Graeme and his wive can do is pitch a tent on the highway where their house used to be and don’t move until payed in full ……

  4. I don’t know whether their house has already gone, but just maybe foreigners should take a lead from many average Spaniards – ignore any ‘official’ bits of paper coming through the letter box. Stay put and, with courage, wait for the arrival of the bulldozer – which might never come. Or at least hang tight until a proper cashable cheque has been received.
    CPO’s have always been necessary in some cases, but they must be delivered honourably, something which Spanish authorities have forgotten used to be part of the Spanish character. But maybe that was before Franco.
    Come on you Spanish readers, what do you have to say about all this??

  5. I wonder if one day, by some miracle, messrs Zapatero, Rubalcaba and soon to be prime minister Rajoy will tumble to the conclusion that the reason why the housing sector is all but dead (not to mention the consequent incredible unemployment figure) is that no-one has any trust in anyone involved in the planning, construction, finance and management of the sector.

    And it is quite irritating to see that the Spanish nationals who suffer from such incompetence far more than foreigners just seem to shrug their shoulders adapt the ‘Así son las cosas’ attitude. ‘Las cosas son así’ because they have allowed them to be instead of demanding that their politicians actually do what they are handsomely paid to do.

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