“By the end of October, I’ve given orders for at least 10 footballs to be ‘arrested’,” the leader of independents Ciudadanos Libres y Unidos (‘Free and United Citizens’) said on the town hall’s Twitter site.
He even posted a photo of the first ball ‘arrested’ on his mayor’s Facebook site.
“Parents – ladies and gentlemen – you don’t play in the Plazas,” he warned.
The reasons, he says, are that children are careless about kicking balls into windows, walls, flowerpots and other private residential, commercial and public fixtures, and fail to notice pedestrians, often lobbing a football right into them or their path.
But residents in Albox, and elsewhere in Spain, have launched harsh criticisms online, questioning where else the children are supposed to play.
Other than on urbanisations – residential complexes at some distance from towns – Spanish homes even in villages are mainly apartments or, in lesser number, terraced townhouses, meaning domestic gardens are extremely rare.
Public parks and gardens do not normally have huge strips of open space, tending to be taken up with ornamental plant features, trees, benches and playground apparatus.