In anniversary year join us and forge some new twin friendships

WITH a special anniversary in propsect this year, Todmorden Town Twinning Association is urging people to become involved in what has been a great social and family exchange experience.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the town’s twinning with Roncq in France, while it is 34 years since Bramsche became Todmorden’s German twin, all three places having a strong textile heritage.

In May, Coun Richard White will travel with a 16-strong party of twinners to a special celebration being hosted in Roncq, one of his last duties in his Mayoral year, and in November Todmorden host families will welcome visiting families from France and the Maire de Roncq, M. Vincent Ledoux.

There are also regular exchanges with Bramsche, and there are still some spaces available on this year’s exchange, for which anyone interested should ring Bramsche secretary Phil Morton on 01706 812485.

Chairman Sue Thornton said the association hoped more people would become involved as it had marvellous benefits.

“The main thing is the friendship and when you are new to the twinning exchanges we found a compatible family and you build on the friendship when you are on the exchanges,” she said.

Although the initial town twinning approaches were made by Todmorden Council, the aim was always that the exchanges should be “family and friend” orientated, not political, and that is how it has developed. Over the years musical and sports groups, including Todmorden Tennis Club and Lydgate United football club, for example, have made enjoyable exchange visits. Talks and seminars also cover wider links, ranging from each area’s history to the EU.

These also take in visits to a range of places of interest and Phil said it is a great opportunity for children learning languages to hone their skills in a no-pressure environment. Sue added: “It’s good fun and you make friends and also learn about each other’s culture, so come along and join us.”

For more information, contact general secretary Jill Bartram on 01706 815670