THE search for a decent wifi connection, or even just a phone signal, is but one of the many trials and tribulations faced by people living in smaller villages away from the main cities.

While wandering around holding up a mobile phone in a modern-day version of butterfly catching is a fairly common sight, it is less frequent to see people setting up their office on a sloping roof.

Much less so when that person is the town mayor.

Victor Milian is the head of the local council of Todolella, a village of 140 inhabitants in Los Puertos de Morella district (inland Castellon Province).

Todolella Castle
Todolella castle, the area’s main attraction

The area has been without internet access for two days, leaving Milian – also a livestock farmer – no option but to balance on the flat part in the middle of the sloping roof of his barn to do his council and farm management work.

Milian is one of many local authorities and business owners in inland parts of the Valencia region calling for better internet and phone lines, an historical problem in these areas as well as public transport, healthcare and education.   

These deficits make it very difficult to fight against the gradual depopulation of rural towns, as young working families will always go where they can work and have all the basic needs covered. 

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