‘My home is my castle’

Enrico, who was orphaned at the age of 14, has been living inside the bridge in Bagnoli-Fuorigrotta, near Naples, for the last 15 years, according to a report in Il Mattino.

'My home is my castle'
Enrico has lived inside the Bagnoli bridge for the last 15 years. Photo: Comune di Napoli

His house, a hole at the top of one of the bridge's pillars, is kitted out with a mattress and bedding, fishing equipment, buckets and various tools, the newspaper reported. Enrico told the newspaper that his home is "his castle" and has a "wonderful view" of the nearby coastline.

He reaches his home by ladder, which is sometimes removed by pranksters. But apart from the jokes, Enrico says he has been warmly welcomed by the local community.
He lost his parents at the age of 14 and later set up home in the bridge "to avoid bad company".
He earns a small living by cleaning the access area near the beach each morning.
Enrico said that if he was offered a better job, he would take it. There are many tales of economic strife across Italy right now. An estimated 50,000 of the population are homeless, according to figures released last year by the Italian Institute of Statistics. But despite the financial difficulty, Enrico said friendship and cooperation remains. "I hate to think him spending all the holidays alone," a local resident and friend of Enrico told the newspaper. "I help him out where I can, such as doing his washing, that kind of thing." 

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Italy expands €200 payment scheme and introduces public transport bonus

Italy's government will extend its proposed one-time €200 benefit to more people and introduce a €60 public transport payment, Italian media reported on Thursday.

Italy expands €200 payment scheme and introduces public transport bonus

Seasonal workers, domestic and cleaning staff, the self-employed, the unemployed and those on Italy’s ‘citizens’ income’ will be added to the categories of people in Italy eligible for a one-off €200 payment, ministers reportedly announced on Thursday evening.

The one-time bonus, announced earlier this week as part of a package of financial measures designed to offset the rising cost of living, was initially set to be for pensioners and workers on an income of less than €35,000 only.

However the government has now agreed to extend the payment to the additional groups following pressure from Italy’s labour, families, and regional affairs ministers and representatives of the Five Star Movement, according to news agency Ansa.

Pensioners and employees will reportedly receive the €200 benefit between June and July via a direct payment into their pension slip or pay packet.

For other groups, a special fund will be created at the Labour Ministry and the procedures for claiming and distributing payments detailed in an incoming decree, according to the Corriere della Sera news daily.

One new measure introduced at the cabinet meeting on Thursday is the introduction of a one-time €60 public transport bonus for students and workers earning below €35,000. The bonus is reportedly designed to encourage greater use of public transport and will take the form of an e-voucher that can be used when purchasing a bus, train or metro season pass.

Other provisions reportedly proposed in the energy and investment decree (decreto energia e investimenti), which is still being adjusted and amended, include extending energy bill discounts, cutting petrol excise duty and rolling on the deadline to claim Italy’s popular ‘superbonus 110’.

The €14 billion aid package, intended to lessen the economic impact of the war in Ukraine, will “fight the higher cost of living” and is “a temporary situation”, Prime Minister Mario Draghi has said.

The Local will report further details of the payment scheme once they become available following final approval of the decree.