The deputy mayor of Valladolid, Manuel Saravia, councilor of Valladolid Take the Word -confluence of Izquierda Unida- and member of the left-wing coalition that governs the city since 2015, has proposed to change the name of three neighborhoods of the city with inherited denominations of the Franco regime: ‘October 29’, ‘March 4’ and ‘Girón’.
The first two neighborhoods have a nomenclature that refers to dates related to the Falange and the third, to a prominent member of the regime. “October 29 was the founding date of the Falange and it was a big party for the movement,” the councilor explained by phone. On March 4, 1934, the fusion between Falange and the JONS, founded in turn by Onésimo Redondo, from Valladolid, was staged at the Calderón Theater in the capital of Pisuerga.
The last of the neighborhoods, Girón, owes its name to José Antonio Girón de Velasco, former Francoist minister and hero of the so-called bunker, who opposed any possible opening of the regime. Saravia has already transferred its proposal to the mayor, the socialist, Óscar Puente, who “is in favor” of the name change, according to his government partner. In order to disturb the neighbors as little as possible, the deputy mayor proposes to change the names to ‘Octubre’ neighborhood, ‘Marzo’ neighborhood and ‘Jirón’ neighborhood, with ‘J’ instead of ‘G’ .
However, Saravia is open to neighborhood associations making proposals, although he remembers that the power to approve changes to the names of the neighborhoods corresponds only to the mayor, not even to the plenary session. The Historical Memory Law forced a dozen Valladolid streets to be changed – sentenced by the Supreme Court by means of -, but the then mayor Javier León de la Riva, of the PP, refused to rename the neighborhoods, arguing that the modification would lead to problems with the files. “Years have passed, we cannot continue until the XXII century with these names,” he points out.
Saravia has not proposed to remove the laureate cross of San Fernando from the shield of Valladolid, a decoration awarded to the city in 1939 after the Spanish civil war to the capital of Pisuerga and the municipality of Belchite. “It was debated in plenary, but the PSOE and Valladolid Take the Word we voted separately. We believe that it must be removed, although it is a more complex matter than that of the neighborhoods,” says the mayor of Pucelano.