Documentary - TV3

Arenys, where it all started

Ten years ago, on 13 September 2009, a group of residents of Arenys de Munt held the first symbolic vote on Catalan independence. Due to this gesture, the Maresme village with a mere 8,000 inhabitants has become a symbol of Catalan independence. 

A divided plenary

A vote on whether to hold a non-binding referendum on independence was supported by the full city council. Only two council members voted against holding the referendum. A state lawyer, though, filed an appeal that led courts in Barcelona to overturn the vote on holding the referendum. Uncertainty remained about whether voters would get the chance to cast their ballots in the symbolic referendum. Finally, on the day of the vote, ballot boxes were placed in the city’s centre.

The opposition to the referendum

The independence referendum in Arenys caused significant backlash from several groups. Some of the most vocal opponents were La Falange Española y de las JONS, who conducted a leaflet campaign to persuade voters against the referendum. Supporters of the far-right party gathered for demonstrations in Arenys de Munt on the day of the vote. As a result, thousands of referendum supporters from all over Catalonia also gathered in Arenys. 

Participation

With a total population of 8,500, about 2,671 of Arenys’ residents voted in the referendum: 2,569 voted in favour of independence, 61 voted against, 29 were blank, and 12 were null. Although less than half of the population participated in the vote, 96% of those who did were in favour of independence, and more of the population voted in the referendum vote than in the Statute or European elections. 

The Documentary

“Arenys, where it all started” was broadcast on Sunday, September 8 2019 on TV3’s “30 minuts” programme. 383,000 people watched the documentary live, which represented a 15.7% share.

DIRECTOR AND SCREENWRITER:

Joan Celdran Danés

FILMMAKER:

David Fontseca

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER:

Valti Roda

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