MARTIN McGuinness from Ardara moved to the South of France in February 2019 where he works as a concierge for some luxury apartments.
France has been in complete lock down since lunchtime Tuesday 17th March.
At first, schools, colleges, most retail shops, bars, restaurants, cinemas, theatres, sports facilities, casinos and other smaller businesses were forced to close the previous Friday, March 13.
France has recorded 112 coronavirus deaths in a day, taking its total to 562, the health ministry said on Saturday (March 21). There have been 14,459 confirmed cases.
“The President, Manuel Macron and the Health Minister, Philippe Edouard have made live televised addresses to the nation explaining why such measures are in force and what sort of plans are in place to help citizens and businesses moving forward. The President delivered a powerful and reassuring speech and said he would be keeping in close contact again in due course as and when things develop further. News coverage and reporting is frequent with ongoing events and keeps people well informed,” he said.
“Cannes has a reduced bus service running on a few of its lines. The route to and from the hospital is covered and the route linking Cannes to its nearby neighbour Mandelieu which is where me and my husband are living at present,” he added.
The French people have been quite responsive and have taken on board what is going on, adhering to the Government’s requests. Only a few cases of people breaking the rules have surfaced.
“People are allowed to leave their homes but they must have a printed form with their name, date of birth, address and the reason they are outside ticked in the appropriate box. The form must be signed and dated. People are allowed and required to go to work at whichever job they are doing that is still functioning.
“People are allowed to take exercise such as walking their dogs or jogging but not in groups and again papers and ID must be carried otherwise there is an on the spot fine of €135,” he said.
After living and working in London for 21 years, Martin moved back to Ireland in 2005 and worked on the farm. He also helped run a successful festival for ten years, worked in local broadcasting and performed all over the country as his alter ego, Scarlett Rose.
“Since moving to the South of France I have met and fell in love with a lovely guy called Philippe and am delighted to say, we got married here in Mandelieu just last month. It was a lovely occasion. We were hoping to have a celebration in Ardara in June however this is looking doubtful at the moment so perhaps a postponement to a later date will be inevitable, but for sure, if not then, we will gather at some stage with family and friends for that special occasion.
“I hope that we can continue our life journey together and that this coronavirus is contained soon with a vaccine being developed. Scary and uncertain times but I am hopeful we will come out of this. I send everyone back home my best wishes. Stay safe and well. Cheers,” he said.