Town twinning has played a big part in my life and it’s reassuring to hear about Barnet’s twin towns and that people continue to enjoy these international connections and the benefits they offer.
Growing up in Hertfordshire during the 1980s, our local town, Buntingford, was twinned with Luynes, near Tours in the Loire Valley. Summer exchange trips, staying with a French family (and returning the favour at home) helped lead to a life-long love of France (and, in my case, a year as a French language assistante in a school in Tours, a dissertation on the region’s wines and a career in the wine trade).
Irene Nichols who is involved with three local local twinning associations shares her enthusiasm:
Barnet’s town twinnings are not as well-known as they should be – which is a real shame, as they offer such a brilliant way of getting to know another country, its people. its culture and maybe even its language.
This is generally by way of exchange visits, staying with families. These may be built around a particular interest, such as a walking group from Barnet visiting a group with the same interest in the twin town. Or it could be choirs performing in each other’s towns. Or a group of students from a school or college twinning with a similar institution from the twin town. Over time close international friendships can and indeed do build up. Apart from the exchange trips there are also social events for members.
Here are details of the three groups I am connected to twinned with towns in Germany, France and the USA.
Friends of Siegerland
Barnet is twinned with the town of Siegen in Germany together with its surrounding area. Siegen is Western Germany, north of Frankfurt and east of Cologne. For more information contact Irene Nichols, tel 020 8440 1366 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Check their website here.
Friends of Chaville
Barnet is twinned with the town of Chaville (pictured) which lies between Paris and Versailles. For more information contact Penny Telfer, tel 020 8440 9096 or email email@example.com. Here is a link to their website.
Friends of Montclair
Montclair is Barnet’s twin town in New Jersey, USA. This twinning, like the others has its roots in WW2. You can learn all about it and perhaps begin to enjoy the many social events we enjoy by contacting Kate Salinger at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 07968 964461. Alternatively email email@example.com or check online.
New members are always welcome, so please get in touch.
Images of Chaville courtesy of Friends of Chaville.