Homeless “residence” in the Fortaleza de São Filipe

Seafront residents and businesses complain about disturbance

FN report that a homeless person has made his “home” behind a wall of the Fort of São Filipe, which was built on the bridge of Ribeira de Santa Luzia, just above the Praça da Autonomia at the junction of two streams of Funchal. It has been the subject of an archaeological restoration project over the last few years.

Here the individual has set up a kind of “camp” in which he lives with his dogs. This is on the other side of a locked gate, but this is so low that anyone can easily jump over it.

FN report that although not beautiful, the “camp” is more or less discreet. But, unlike other homeless “dwellings” found on the streets of the city, it is built permanently. Residents and shopkeepers in the area complain that the person in question urinates and defecates in the vicinity, as do the dogs that accompany him, which bark late at night. The police have already been called, but cannot solve the problem, and the City of Funchal is acting as a kind of “condominium” since it often cleans up the feces and the urine that is left there.

The local population, described as indignant but sensitive to situations of poverty and exclusion, have asked the responsible entities to resolve this situation. They claim the camp does not belong in the tourist destination and has seriously troubled the residents and businesses in the vicinity.


2 thoughts on “Homeless “residence” in the Fortaleza de São Filipe”

  1. I can imagine the problems this causes.

    When we were there earlier this year I felt the area below needed a good clean up. After the fire in the old factory much of the water and debris ran down into the area below and it didn’t look very nice at all.

  2. It is awful that places like Madeira, relatively prosperous, have homeless problems. Isn’t there an equivalent of Social Services on the island that can find accommodation for the homeless?

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