The long-awaited visit, due in 2020, from Bassetlaw Twinning Association’s (BTA) partner organisation in Aurillac / Arpajon, in the Auvergne, took place at the end of July and was greatly enjoyed by both the local hosts and the French guests. Prior trepidation about the impact of the weather on the (mostly outdoors) programme thankfully proved to be unnecessary.
After weeks of cool, wet weather here, most of the activities went according to plan, with only the odd shower of rain, and even a few glimpses of sunshine.
The one serious change of plan came about on the very last day of the visit. A day in the Peak District, including a walk which took in the top of Mam Tor, was to end at a hotel where the Whitwell Brass Band, including one BTA host, were due to be giving a concert in the garden. The weather forecast was so appalling that the hotel cancelled the event. The group instead booked an Indian meal in a Worksop restaurant which went down extremely well. Curry is not easily come by in the French provinces. Some of the visitors were happily experiencing Indian food for the first time while others were delighted to have the opportunity to eat it again.
After a long twinning ‘drought’ it was good to offer opportunities to BTA members not involved in hosting to get together with the visitors. A number attended the garden party on the afternoon the visitors arrived and the pub meal the day after. Several joined the group for a Petanque session at the North Notts Arena and a few supported the walk in the Peak District. Old friendships were renewed and new ones made, and many long conversations took place, catching up on developments from family news to national issues.
Anyone interested in finding out more about BTA, its twin towns and its activities should contact the BTA secretary by email on firstname.lastname@example.org The two German twin towns are now also keen to re-establish twinning visits so watch this space for future plans!