Madeleine – 10th – the congregation emerges

The times on my camera are about 8 minutes ahead of the church clock. This the scene around 9.40pm, with the media now waiting for the congregation to emerge from St Vincent.

There are still late night passers-by heading south, perhaps to one of the restaurants or perhaps just going for a stroll on a pleasant evening.

I got intercepted by one gentleman from Sweden who was curious about the activity. And a German couple who said they were in Luz on the night Madeleine disappeared. Because I don’t look like media, people are generally happy to chat to me for a few minutes. The flavour was along the lines of why so much was being done for one child when there are many other missing children.

If you look at the lighting, you can see more sources than there are at the Jane Tanner sighting. However, Jane’s man-carrying-child was very close to a (sodium) street light. The street lights here are sodium, backed by fluorescent light from two shop fronts, the media cameras and a near-full moon. On 3 May 2007, the near-full moon had not risen, but on 3 May 2017 it was well up in a clear sky.

Make your own judgement about which colours can be picked out and which colours can’t.

The shop in the background with a green stripe over the window and a large plus sign on its front wall is a chemist. Back in 2007, it was an Ali Super convenience store. There is footage of that store in the background as the McCanns arrived at the church to attend an evening mass. The store remained open until 10.30pm.

If the Crimewatch special of Oct 2013 is to be believed, the man seen by the Smiths around 10pm headed in this direction i.e. roughly in the direction of the church.

If the Panorama special of May 2017 is to be believed, the dig in central Luz by Operation Grange in June 2014 relates to 3 men considered as possible burglars. These 3 men were 3 of the 4 made arguidos in July 2014, but all 4 have been informed they are no longer persons of interest.

Neither Crimewatch nor Panorama seems to have twigged the importance of Aoife Smith’s testimony.

It would be an interesting Freedom Of Information request to find out precisely how much the Operation Grange digs in Luz cost.

The church clock is showing 9.40pm, and the congregation has started to emerge, complete with candles inside little glass bowls. I was a little bit bemused as to why there was little attention being paid to these people. The best photo I have seen of them was taken by reporter Michael Havis, inside St Vincent. He told me the congregation numbered about 20 and they went near to east end altar, while the media, also around 20 in number, sat at the west end, near the door you see.

It dawned on me why the media was paying limited attention to the candle-light procession. They were queuing up for an interview with the Anglican minister, Reverend Haynes Hubbard. Presumably these had been agreed in advance i.e. that the minister would come out at the end of the service and talk to the media.

Madeleine – to the beach?

Using the same convention as before, that amber means places that should have been open around the time that Madeleine disappeared, here is the list of additional points of interest, located close to the church, Nossa Senhora da Luz.

North of the church –

Credit Agrícola 24hr ATM

Luz Tavern

West of the church –

Ali Super convenience store

South of the church

Atlantico restaurant

Cavaleiro restaurant

Chaplin’s restaurant

Fortaleza restaurant

Marujo restaurant

So there were 5 restaurants around the south of the church, using the square between the Fortaleza on the west and the other 4 on the east as a car park. There is only one route for car access to these, running between the Ali Super store and the church.

Precisely where the ‘to the beach’ tale for Smithman originated is something I don’t know. For there to be any truth in it, an abductor would be running the gauntlet. An innocent person would not, but I cannot think of why someone would take a young child to the beach at that time of night.

Aoife Smith mentions the Cavaleiro, Chaplin’s and the Marujo as restaurants south of the church as places where the Smith family would dine out in Luz. However, as she dined in the Dolphin on 3rd May, these 3 are staying amber until better information emerges.

Luz Establishments M3