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Oakham twinning trip is hit with Germans

German visitors enjoyed a whirlwind tour of Rutland thanks to a revitalisation of ‘town twinning’.

Oakham was twinned with Barmstedt in northern Germany just over 30 years ago, but as members of the original twinning group grew older, some of the drive to keep up links was lost.

Lately though, Angela Humphreys from Oakham Twinning Association has been working with town mayor Adam Lowe to revive the idea, culminating in a visit to Oakham by six Germans.

The visit included a ‘Twinning Dinner’ at the Admiral Horn Blower, High Street, last Thursday, which was attended by 29 people including Suzanne Schmidt, chairman of the Barmstedt twinning association, Lord-Lieutenant of Rutland Dr Sarah Furness, Chairman of the county council Ken Boole, and Uppingham mayor Miranda Jones.

Coun Lowe said: “The dinner was all about getting together to re-ignite our twinning links which started 30 years ago, and followed on from a visit that six of us from Oakham made in December last year.

“On Friday we borrowed a minibus from Tim Norton Motors in Oakham and used this to take our German visitors on a tour of

“We started in Stoke Dry, where St Andrew’s Church is connected to the Gunpowder Plot, then went to Lyddington Bede House and Tinwell and Ketton via Harringworth Viaduct. We pointed out that Ketton’s cement works is now owned by a German firm.

“We also visited Tickencote’s church because I particularly love its arch and the site of The Battle of Losecoat Field near Empingham.”

After that, the tour took in Exton village and then Teigh, which is one of only 15 ‘Thankful’ villages where all its residents survived the First World War, and a church known for having a medieval vicar who was beheaded. The tour ended with refreshments at Wymondham windmill and a look at Wing maze.

On the Saturday, the minibus was out again, this time to Stamford, where the German visitors were offered a visit to Burghley House thanks to tickets donated by Oakham Town Council, and took a look around the town. Four of the German visitors also took part in the Rutland Water Half Marathon on Sunday.

“It was a great experience,” added Coun Lowe and I would encourage people to get involved by contacting me at the town council.”

E-mail: enquiries@oakhamtowncouncil.gov.uk

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