• 20 umbrellas and 2 people on Spanish beach at 7.30am

A Spanish beach at 7.30am had 20 sun umbrellas – and just two people present – as temperatures rise this summer, in an effort to grab the best spots.

In what has become the charge: ‘Let Battle Commence’ on many of Spain’s beaches in a bid to secure a good spot a mixed response has been for – and against – the practice.

“What harm is it doing? I could happily sit behind a row of empty beds. I can understand around a Hotel pool when beds/shade are limited – but on a beach. Leave them alone!,” said Kay Barrett.

Kirsty Wallwork from Torrevieja said: “Why is everyone all trying to blame each other? It’s always the Germans, Brits, Spanish, etc., – it’s everyone!

“Just take the umbrella, move it back one, and sit down. No drama.”

On some beaches at 7am hundreds of people stake their umbrellas in the sand – before returning home for breakfast – with others, not returning for hours during the summer.

Whether it is seen as an illegal practice is down to the relevant Town Hall authorities.

In 2016 Torrevieja became the first municipality that issued a €150 fine to a person who placed an umbrella on the beach, prior to 8am.

This summer the city of Cullera in Valencia is issuing fines of €750-€3,000.

John McCash said: “The placing of umbrellas early in the morning is a Spanish tradition – if you get up at 7am good for you.”

Marie Noonan said: “Last summer in Calpe the Police put a warning out that if people did this they would start taking them off the beach.

Torrevieja: Full House.

“They did, and it worked. It’s not fair when people do this, the beach is not big enough in the height of the season.

“So maybe it’s a good idea to start doing this on other beaches along the coast.”

Sheila Garcia said: “Torrevieja issuing fines for anyone putting umbrellas up before 8am is no good.

“They still go away – and come back hours later! We could do with the beach Marshalls they used during Covid-19. They did a great job.”

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