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  • Writer's pictureAndrew Starr

The Chair's report


This blog page serves as the public facing place for the chair to report to the committee and its friends about events the committee has undertaken and progress towards those future events and projects we will be undertaking...

Useful links - These are a collection of places where information can be found on what we are doing in relation to twinning with European cities.

An easy to remember url for this webpage is tinyurl.com/chairectc


The YouTube Channel, which features many videos of performances at our events is here


Our public calendar is available online here

The Chair's Report

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For the October 25th 2023 committee meeting (virtual)

We have had -

A visit from Duisburg in mid August with a lot packed in for them including a visit to see the Lord Mayor (Deputy) on the Friday. I did take a lof photos most have seen on Facebook.

A roast dinner on the Sunday evening at the Ship & Castle and A Fish & Chip Farewll Supper at the Portsmouth Sailing Club.

A friends of Portsmouth Twinning Quiz Night - Many thanks to Ann & Lynda (Our orgnisers of the event), Jean & Andy (Our Quizmasters) and Jill (Our Hostess).


The Great South Run

On Saturday, 14th October, 11 runners are arriving from Caen, they were hosted by Friends of Portsmouth Twinning and at about 4pm I took them on a little walk around Old Portsmouth, meeting at the City Museum.

We got to the Sailing Club in Bath Square for 6 pm where a very large amount of pasta, garlic bread and apple pie had been prepared by our very own master chef Lee Mason.


On the Sunday, I was at a gazebo next to where the runners numbers are given out from early until about 2:30. The runners used that as a meeting point, they showered in the Pyramids arranged by Carol (after some persauding on the day following initial refusal- I had to show the email trail on my phone).

Post Run Social

We were in the Brewhouse from 3 pm until 9 pm when they left for the ferry. Thanks to John Shepherd for arranging the use of a Council Minibus and doing the driving!


Southsea Cinema and Arts Centre - German film with English Subtitles for Friends of Portsmouth Twinning. Good Bye Lenin!

A small group attended and enjoyed the showing of the film. If we are to repaet such events we really woulod need more interest in attendance.

Thanks to Ann, Aysegul and Lee for their help.

For the July 5th 2023 committee meeting (virtual)


There was not much to report for April, but since April we have had Mayor Making with a visit from both Caen and Duisburg.


Les Courants de La Liberté in June. See here for further details.


A visit from the University of Caen to the University of Portsmouth to talk about future co-operation and this was extended to the twinning committee and the city council to discuss this. This was attended by myself and the Lord Mayor of Portsmouth. See here Jacqueline's Linkedin Post


An Exchange Visit to Caen in June. See here for further details.


A visit to the Southsea Cinema for a private showing of 'Les Parapluies de Cherbourg'. Due to organisational issues, I supplied the Bluray from my own pocket.


If we are to do such things in the future we would need to charge more OR have maximum capacity as it is not the cheapest of venues to hire... To cover the cost of the offer we made (film entry and a welcome drink), we would need 30 participants and each would need to pay £10.00, which to see an old movie is a big ask really as you can see new ones at the Odeon for from £5... or at the Vue for around £9... Trying to convince people to support such an event is a hard sell.

Upcoming is a visit from Dusiburg in August. A hosting of a teenanger from Caen at a similar time frame, and The Great South Run with particiapnts from Caen in October.


For the January 11th 2023 committee meeting (virtual)


No-one wished to stand as chair in my stead in October, so we have agreed that I shall continue in the role.


We have a visit coming up this month from Mme Cottenceau of Caen City Council. She is one of the Deputy Mayors of the City. Her role is international relations.

Her visit is timed to coincide with the Shaping Portsmouth Annual Conference on the Friday.


I am currently planning a morning tour of the city for her on the Saturday morning followed by a lunchtime gathering for people from the city to come to meet with her and discuss ideas they would like to see with the city of Caen.


Looking Back:


On December 20th we had the Lord Mayor's Christmas Message on Zoom. Attended by members of the ECTC, Duisburg Portsmouthfreunde, Duisburg City Council , the Cities of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island. The Falkland Islands and Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Although Caen and Portsmouth, Virginia were invited, there was no-one from those cities able to attend.


The visit in December on the 8th was a great success with 28 people coming across the channel for the day. We had the day in Winchester, we travelled by train and spent the day visiting the cathedral, the city centre sights and the Christmas market. There were certainly some things bought for Christmas presents for those back in Normandy.


The evening was spent at the Sovereigns Pub near to the ferry port. A lot of Fish and Chips were eaten and their meal was accompanied by Christmas Carolas and other songs from the wonderful Fine Voice Academy and their leads 'Tesoro' Simon and Karen.


On November 18th we held at the Royal Maritime Club a Skittles Evening for members of 'Friends of Portsmouth Twinning and their family members. Great fun was had by all, and Jill took home the most valuable and coveted trophy.



For the October 26th 2022 committee meeting (virtual)


As our July meeting was not quorate we have still not held our AGM. There is little mileage to be gained by me spending lots of time attempting to find a venue for a hybrid meeting when there are so few who seem to be able to be present at the prearranged meeting times. Therefore for the foreseeable future, we will continue to hold virtual meetings as people can join from wherever they may be.

There will be no visit from Caen's Westlake Bros Souvenir Group as they will be unable to book an overnight ferry to suit their travel needs at that time as Brittany Ferries are no longer offer such overnight crossings on a daily basis. There is also a delay of up to three months for passport applications in France. This means that any members they have who have no passports (a Post Brexit requirement by the UK government). Would have been unable to travel. Remember that their group reforms in September following the long summer holidays in France.


There will be a visit from Caen on December 8th I will mention this in the meeting


August saw a successful meeting of our friends from Duisburg. They met with the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress on the Friday of their week. Cllr. Mason helped organise their meal at the Sailing Club and some members of the German Speakers Group helped entertain them too. I cleared my diary to spend as much time as possible with them, which was appreciated.


Duisburg Volks Hochschule - September 12th at 7 pm - talk on Portsmouth given by AS. Widely attended in person there and by some online too.


We had 11 runners from Caen for the Great South Run. I would like to thank Lee and Carol for their help with their transport to and from the port and Chris Jones for helping them organise their transport from Ouistreham, despite the cyber attack they are still suffering from in Caen. It was a good opportunity to mix with people from our twin city, but no runners who have expressed an interest in going to Caen for Les Courants de la Liberté could manage to come and meet with them, which was a sadly missed opportunity.


Overall, things are picking up and as Chair I do need some help from time to time as managing all this unpaid work (where there are cost implications for fuel, PCC parking charges etc) is becoming increasingly difficult for just one person to manage all the time.


Here is hoping that you have been here to read this and that I will see more of those who are in the committee to 'promote and strengthen the links between our twin cities' .


For the July 13th 2022 committee meeting (virtual)

There will be a lot to discuss once more at this meeting, so the more people in attendance from the committee the better.

In April Christophe Collet and his deputy leader from the Westlake Bros Memorial Group in Caen visited the city for a day and I took them to various sites they wished to see. Their current plan is to aim to be in Portsmouth for the November 11th weekend and to hopefully do something jointly with the Pompey Pals Youth Project here in Portsmouth.

May saw the Mayor Making Ceremony taking place with an official delegation from Duisburg of the Deputy Mayor Fr. Klabuhn and Lydia Steinhauer from the City's Council International Relations Department.

Claudine Ceriser and Charles-Edouard came from the Caen-Portsmouth Twinning Association in Caen.

We had a successful visit from Caen for the beginning of June for the Queen's Jubilee weekend. The programme was a great success. There is a plan to hopefully come back to Portsmouth for a day or a weekend trip to include the Winchester Christmas markets in late November or in early December.

In this meeting we have much to discuss and plan for...

Our next meeting will be on Wednesday October 25th. It would be good to see as many as you as possible there.


For the March 29th 2022 committee meeting (virtual)


A lot has been going on in the background since January and as a result it is important for much to be brought to this meeting as it regards events happening in June, August and September.


We have booked and paid the deposit for the Friends of Portsmouth Twinning skittles evening in November 2022.


We have pretty much planned and completed the programme for the Caen visit in June and the Duisburg visit in August. (Info at meeting)


We are also planning to have a presence at the Mayor Making Ceremony in May (info at meeting)


I gave a talk to the University on March 7th via Zoom and we were in the Festival of Cultures on Weds 9th March.

You can read all about it here. This page can serve as a new launchpage for all things twinning and other international links.






For the January 12th 2022 committee meeting (virtual)


In November we held our first FoPT event since the onset of Covid, where we had a group of members play skittles at the Royal Maritime Club with a basket style food offering included. As we enjoyed this evening there were murmurs of a new variant being discovered in South Africa and we are now back under an increasing spike of Omicron variant with its respective travel restrictions and other such issues back in place.


The France at Home market happened on November 28th and was very well attended the market stall holders were pleased with the business they did on that day. AS the travel restrictions were due to begin again the following day, it was likely their last one of 2021, with planned forthcoming pre-Christmas markets not being likely to be possible to travel back from France to.


Due to a possible need for work permits and visas in the future following changes due to Brexit, they are unsure if they can even continue to operate. This came out in a conversation with their main organiser on November 27th. They get a lot of differing opinions depending on where they arrive in the UK and unsurprisingly they are unable to get actual clarification form any governmental bodies in the UK or France as to what they need to be able to do to continue to work as they do all over the UK. I await news from them as to their possible returns, but if they do return they have had a successful Sunday market, so will hopefully choose a Sunday rather than a Friday.


We are still planning on a visit from Duisburg in August 2022, still planned for 13th to 20th August - We have provisionally booked a meeting with the Lord Mayor for the Friday morning (Aug 20th).


We also have planned visits from Caen June 2022 or May 2022. - We discussed the possibility of moving this visit to coincide with Mayor Making.

Mayor Making should be back to normal (Covid etc permitting)


We are still planning to visit Duisburg 2023 of Fine Voice Academy - other projects and ideas?


We have launched our Postcard Competition with a prize of £500. There is a new submission date of February 28th. I have got the promise of help judging by the city's arts curator at the City Museum. This really does need to be helped by publicising this competition.


The visit by the directors of Westlake Bros was postponed in December and is still postponed due to ongoing travel restrictions.


Their current arrival date of April 30th may or may not happen as I have still been unable to get in contact with them. We have planted the idea of the Pompey Pals Project doing something if and when they visit us in order to better establish a link with them for forthcoming events.


University of Portsmouth’s International Week 2022 (ideas were submitted before Christmas Break 10.12.21) Event 07.03 - 13.03 2022. (AS/BW)

We will have a stand on the Wednesday (9 March). AS will give a talk (most likely virtually) on the city's twin cities and other links either the 7th or 8th March.


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For the October 27th 2021 committee meeting (virtual)


The Portsmouth Artist 'My Dog Sighs' has applied to take part in the Duisburg bridge painting project and it is now up to Duisburg and any artists who applied to organise.

I have had a meeting with Alice Hume and a colleague from the Hotwalls Studio with a view to reaching out to Caen, Duisburg and maybe indeed some of our other links such as the USA.


I have also met with people at the Aspex Gallery once more with a view to reaching out to others in our link city.


I have begun the process of attempting to link Yes We Caen in Caen with Shaping Portsmouth in Portsmouth.


The kite festival happened in August, but stalls were not permitted there. This was due to the high winds.


Contact has been established with both Cosham and Southsea Bridge Clubs and the relevant person in Caen has been given their contact details to attempt to set something up.


We have launched our Postcard Competition with a prize of £500. There is a provisional submission date of October 31st. This could easily be extended, as we really do need to help publicise this competition.




For the July 14th 2021 committee meeting and AGM (virtual)


As you might imagine, there has been very little going on in the real world of twinning since lockdown. Travel to and from France and Germany is still very difficult due to the need for quarantine. This may change on or soon after July 19th. With this in mind, it may soon be possible to welcome our friends from France and Germany here once more and for us to be able to go and visit them.


However here is some news as to what has been happening...


In the meantime, your chair has kept twinning alive, by organising regular online socials in French, German, English and Italian these ended on July 4th. I am hoping to return to normal in real life social events at some point soon. The virtual rooms could still happen as these are a good way of engaging with our friends in Caen and Duisburg, without the need for them to cross the channel and find accommodation.

You can see the dates and times we had socials here.


Wing Chan, one of the trustees at the Hilsea Lido, who has offered the twinning association use of their facilities when we do have visitors has a project launching first of all at the end of September/beginning of October. I will be producing a blog page with information about this event as he would like to try to get young people (18-25) to participate from Caen and/or Duisburg in this team building week on a yacht in the Solent... Once I have produced the blog post I will link it here as well as on all groups and Social Media platforms.


If travel restrictions are eased there was talk from some of the ladies in Duisburg's Portsmouthfreunde visiting us towards the end of August or beginning of September. If this is confirmed I shall certainly be organising a few get-togethers with them.


Claudine and the Caen association have many bridge players among their members and would like to organise bridge tournaments online (so far I have contacted both Southsea and Cosham Bridge Clubs, to no avail) Do any of you know of local Bridge Clubs?

One of their ideas is to come across on the ferry and play bridge en route! This would be via Brittany Ferries from Caen-Ouistreham to Portsmouth.


The city of Duisburg has launched a street art project to get its grey concrete motorway bridges spruced up. I am aware that Portsmouth artist 'My Dog Sighs' had put in an application, nothing can happen until travel restrictions are lifted, but hopefully he will be successful and we may see some of his work appearing on a bridge in Germany! A real visible link for all Duisburgers between Portsmouth and Duisburg as this r


The Portsmouthfreunde in Duisburg have produced this video about Portsmouth being well worth a visit. I introduce it and the former Lord Mayor and current Deputy Lord Mayor Cllr. Rob Wood ends it (his bit is in English).



For the April 14th 2021 committee meeting (virtual)


Following the special meeting in December, discussions took place as to how we might collaborate better in the future either virtually or in reality.


We are still much in the hold of the Covid-19 pandemic and real life travel is pretty much impossible - this most likely will delay anything happening this year. If we can do thinmgs this year, then so much the btter. We will work towards real life meetings for 2022 if they cannot happen this year.


Lynda confirms that the planned skittles evening is pencilled in for November 2021...


We will hope to be sending the choir from the Fine Voice Academy to Duisburg in May 2022.


We are working towards pairing some Portsmouth Street Artists with the city of Duisburg - I have been in discussion with Portsmouth Creates (among others) to see if we can garner some interest in pairing our street artists with people in Duisburg who will be planning the painting of several motorway bridges on Duisburg's A59 Autobahn with the theme of 'Heimat'.


There has been a strong indication of interest from the Portsmouth based artist who paints under the name of 'My Dog Sighs', He has applied and the people in Duisburg have confirmed they have received it.


I have spent much time during lockdown keeping contact with our counterparts in Caen and Dusiburg. I have attended a virtual committee meeting of the Portsmouthfreunde and have arranged and given some free English lessons for the Caen group.


We have continued our socials online and these have been well attended by people from Caen, Dusiburg and indeed at times other parts of France and Germany and Switzerland... (these can be found below)

A small group of us have been in fairly regular contact during lockdwon regarding what is going on, but now is the time for the wider group to start thinking of what we should do after lockdown in the big new world out there.


For the Special Meeting on Friday December 11th


The Lord Mayor will host a special meeting on Friday December 11th at 5:30pm in the UK and 6:30 pm in Duisburg and Caen.


This meeting takes place in my Google Workspace, by clicking on the link you will be able to join. The easiest and best browser to use on a computer is Google Chrome.


The main idea is to give everyone in each of our cities the chance to put faces to names and to have a small get together with the Lord mayor in virtual reality, which would normally would have have happened at least once here in Portsmouth and in both our twin cities during his tenure as Lord Mayor.


This is also the best way on mobile devices and tablets. You can also download a Google Meet App for Android or this version for Apple iOS devices


There have been many online social events for people to have a chat with others in Portsmouth, France and Germany - These have been organised in French, German, English and Italian (as these are languages I have knowledge of) You can see what has happened and any new ones will be added to >>>this link


A new interesting project in association with the University of Rennes, Sciences Politiques (Caen Campus) and the Yes We Caen Association is in development, bringing many people, organisations from Portsmouth and Caen together to produce a Virtual Reality tool. The beginnings of this are being kept as links on >>>this link


I do hope you will attend the meeting (even if it is just to listen) - If you would like to put forward any ideas for projects to the people present then please send them to me in advance on my email


The Google Workspace works exactly like Google Classrooms, but you do not need a specific login, just the invitation link.


If you are having difficulties this blogpage I wrote for my Portsmouth College Students, when we went into second lockdown and all evening classes were moved online might help you.


It is likely we will not need our January Meeting - If you have all taken on board developments here and looked at the new projects we are able to take part in.


Do keep an eye on the Yes We Caen Project Page - this will be updated regularly with new links and anything else relevant to its development


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For the Meeting on October 7th 2020.


As of October 2020, all live events are postponed or cancelled due to Covid-19 restrictions.


There had been discussion of involvement privately from citizens of Caen to come to take part in the Great South Run, but that has been cancelled.


There had also been discussion with Claudine about bringing a group over for the day in December for Christmas Shopping, a panto, or the Victorian Festival of Christmas. Then came the quarantine ruling. It was possible that there was not going to be a Festival of Christmas even if there was no Covid. The Kings do have plans for a panto, but it isn't looking good for large groups to be moving around and having breakfast, dinner etc... so that is shelved too.


The working party planning events have been in discussion and we think it is likely we can try to pencil in events that we cancelled, where appropriate in similar slots in 2021, at least perhaps from April onwards, without any major commitment and just see how it goes. However we could aim to hold a few virtual events - this is to be discussed in the Virtual Meeting on October 7th. Ideas and volunteers for preparation of materials would be good!


On the last Sunday in August we were able to have a potted version of the France at Home market in Southsea, although there was a chill in the wind, it was relatively nice weather and there were definitely more people in Palmerston Road on that day than they had in December 2019 in the pouring rain that Friday. I spoke to more people about twinning than I did in December too. Thanks to Councillor Mason who came for the lunchtime and afternoon to keep me company, chat to a few people and enable me to take some breaks from our info stand.


Unfortunately, our 2021 calendars (ordered in January 2020) did not arrive until late September.


I now have a stock of these to give to people who support our cause, to sell to non committee members for £3 and to committee members for a minimal contribution towards their actual cost. These will most likely be given to FoPT members as part of their subscription. - This can be discussed in the meeting if need be.


I am therefore hoping that France at Home will be able to return for December 2020, but not banking on it... you can view the publishers ad for the calendars here


We got a big discount with us paying just under £58 for 50 calendars.


We will hold the October meeting in the virtual world and it seems likely we may well be under restrictions for the forseeable future, however, it is possible to do things online and if you have not yet seen the blog pages created specifically for the twinning association online (viewed by many in our twin and sister cities) here are the links:


We have shared many videos found online by people in Portsmouth, Caen and Duisburg.


We have shared performances of bands and singers who have done work with us either in Caen or here in Portsmouth at our events. Some of these performances have since been limited by YouTube, but some still work if you click to view them on YouTube itself...


There are many videos from local artists and few videos from a band in Caen broadcast live online at different points. Some are no longer available some can be accessed by clicking to view on YouTube.


There is news on what has been happening since late March including many videos and bits of news...


There is the list of online socials in either English, French, German or Italian using the same virtual room as the committee meetings. Usually also held on a Wednesday from 7pm. All welcome, the English one is best for those who don't 'do' a foreign language.


I had just begun, with Ann and Cllr. Suzy Horton to discuss a virtual arts and artists exchange, then we were all locked down. The page was begun and is here for hopefully re-establishing whenever we get to establishing a new 'normal' - this new normal may require a lot more online collaboration as costs are low or none online...


We have shared videos made by a Russian Vlogger of Maizuru in Japan and he is aware of our share and has looked at our pages and now wants to visit Portsmouth when it is again possible (we will see of course!)


We have also had the International page shared by the Colorado History people who came to Portsmouth. Some photos of them have been added to that page under the Lakewood section

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Chair's Report for ECTC meeting July 8th 2020

It was not possible to hold the July event, so our AGM has been postponed to October



Chair's Report for ECTC meeting April 1st 2020

This meeting was postponed until July...


In January we saw the launch of Friends of Portsmouth Twinning and Duisburg 70 at Portsmouth Guildhall a report written by Sue H can be seen at the bottom of the Friends of Portsmouth Public Info page: tinyurl.com/ectcjan20


This was also an opportunity to get local and regional twinning associations together. This hopefully will be the start of a bit more collaboration between people who volunteer to support twinning associations.


In February

We held the first event to which all members of FoPT were invited.

We held an event that celebrated the diversity in the West of Germany (so Duisburg) and France (Mardi Gras) fancy dress, tie cutting etc... rather than just making pancakes!

Shrove Tuesday is February 25th so the event is on Saturday February 22nd from 2pm to 5pm.

Shareable link tinyurl.com/foptfeb20


March

We had the Westlake Brothers here from Caen on Saturday March 7th. - They held a memorial and following on from that a reading of the names of all those from Portsmouth who died in WWII/D-Day Landings and The Battle for Normandy


Wednesday March 18th pm - We will have a stand at the University of Portsmouth's International Fair at their Nuffield Centre Sports Centre.


The April meeting will hopefully be able to show that much planning has happened for the various events in May 2020 both here and in Duisburg.


Our April 1st meeting was cancelled and the committee saw no real reason to hold a virtual meeting.

Unfortunately due to travel restrictions and the lockdown, the planned visits from Caen in June and Duisburg in August are now cancelled.


As pubs, clubs, cafés and other meeting venues are also closed all ECTC and FOPT are cancelled or postponed until further notice. We are holding online socials from time to time. These are through the ECTC Facebook Page, French, German and Italian Speakers in Portsmouth Facebook Groups. The Socials are held using Google Hangouts for Business which can accept up to 250 connections. It is therfore not as restricted as usual Google Hangouts (8 connections), Houseparty (8 connections), Zoom (3 connections or just 40 minutes and then a new Zoom Meeting needs to be scheduled).



Chair's Report for ECTC meeting January 8th 2020

A large group arrived from Caen for the Victorian Festival of Christmas on November 30th.

A meal was held for them at the Eldon Arms which was attended by a few members of French Speakers in Portsmouth and the ECTC including the Lord Mayor Cllr. David Fuller and the Lady Mayoress Leza Tremorin with last year's Lord Mayor Cllr Lee Mason.

Once ready there will be a brief article on this along with a few more images, but here is one image for the time being.


The 6th December saw the return of the French market company France at home, where we had a stand and sold a few calendars and gave out a lot of leaflets.


Signing up 2 people to Friends of Portsmouth Twinning in advance of the 24th January launch.


Photo courtesy of Jean Barrow who helped on the stand, with Lynda Parsons and Sue Hopgood.

Our next main event is The ECTC launch of Duisburg 70 and the Friends of Portsmouth Twinning group. Our public facing calendar of what is planned can be seen here.


The poster below advertises out upcoming event on January 24th. Over 50 tickets booked so far...


Attendees include the University of Portsmouth, Syd and Phyllis Rapson (former MP for Portsmouth North), various local and regional twinning associations and representatives from businesses and groups on the city... Many other invitees are yet to confirm.

Chair's Report for ECTC meeting November 13th.

There are now blog posts from both interns in both Portsmouth and Caen.

The Great South Run happened and the runners from both Caen and Caen's twin town of Würzburg were very happy with their visit and the things we had organised for them.

Maybe in the future everyone should just be happy that people come to take part, rather than worry so much about which teams wins the race as it seems increasingly confusing to obtain the timings from either the Great South Run or Les Courants de la Liberté organisers. After all the purpose is to get people from different places together.

A successful buffet meal for 60 was provided at The Eldon Arms, the French and German guests were very complimentary about the food served. In future, however those guests who are not part of the team from Caen, will need to confirm that they are attending by paying for their meal in advance. The failure of some promised attendees from the UK has cost the committee unnecessary expense.

We are hoping for information on this run in due course and a blog post will hopefully appear on this blog, including possibly information on who actually won the race in Caen and in Portsmouth.

Committee members have been busy planning events for Duisburg 2020 and the launch of our Friends of Portsmouth Twinning group. The Eventbrite link for online purchase of tickets is here tinyurl.com/foptjan20

We will also have physical tickets available from committee members and a further way of purchasing tickets directly via BACS.

Two groups will be in Portsmouth for Saturday November 30th from Caen to attend the Victorian Festival of Christmas.

The French Market will return to Southsea's Palmerston Road on Friday December 6th. We hope to have a stand there with the help of committee members. Read more here.

Chair's Report for ECTC meeting September 10th.

We had our intern from Caen arrive in early August and leave on September 1st.

Hopefully, soon we will have a short report from her on her stay, which will go onto this blog under another post. The Portsmouth Intern in Caen will return on September 16th to Portsmouth. We should also have a brief report from her for our blog.

The Kite Festival was void of all stands this year due the forecast of high winds. These did come on Saturday in particular, so we were unfortunately not able to have a stand there this year.

We had a visit from Duisburg's Portsmouth Freunde in August for a week. A dinner was arranged for some of the members to meet locals at the Inn Lodge/Farmhouse on Burrfields Road. Plans were discussed fro celebrating Duisburg-Portsmouth 70th Anniversary of Twinning. They were also welcomed by the Lord Mayor, Councillor David Fuller on the Friday at the Guildhall.

The last Friday of August saw a French Market from Normandy and Brittany arrive in Southsea. We did have a presence there and spoke to many people, giving out a lot of leaflets.

This stand taught us that we really must set up a group of some sort for people in the city who want to know more about twinning and be involved without them needing to be on the committee... Committee members are going to a conference in Bristol for twinning associations, we hope that there we will get some ideas as to what we could do here in Portsmouth.

Chair's Report for ECTC meeting and Annual General Meeting - July 3rd, 2019.

A list of events can always be found at tinyurl.com/caenduisevents

Please see these links below for updates on individual past events.

A report on the chair's visit to Caen and its surroundings with one of our greatest supporters Miss Becki Short and a professional photographer (Julie Cotterell) is here. (in the meantime here are some shareable videos

A report by Kevan Chippindall-Higgin on Les Courants de la Liberté is here.

A report on the D-Day 75 events in Portsmouth is here.

A report by Bryony Whitmarsh (Associate Dean of University of Portsmouth) on the re-signing of collaboration contract between Caen and Portsmouth is here.

A report by Lynda Parsons on the British visit to Caen over the weekend 7th to 10th June is here.

The reciprocal visit to Portsmouth is due in June 2020 – could you or anyone you know, host someone, a couple, a family from Caen? A Brazier, S Hopgood and J Hill (FSIP) we need one more at least…

The comité de jumelage Caen-Portsmouth has put some information on their website here.

A report on the Mayor Making Ceremony with the inauguration of the Cllr David Fuller as Lord Mayor of Portsmouth in the presence of M. Pascal Pimont from Caen and six delegates from Duisburg is here.

A report on the May Day Bank Holiday Weekend Lord Mayor's Rural and Seaside Show along with the winners of the Brittany Ferries competition is here.

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Information on our other forthcoming projects:

There are planned visits from Caen on June 8th for D-Day 75 festivities, June 22nd, July 9th, July 20th, August 29th, September 21st and November 30th (Festival of Christmas)

Sunday June 16th – Les Courants de la Liberté

A group of runners are travelling to Caen to run on behalf of Portsmouth in Caen’s Les Courants de la Liberté.

KCH is collating all entrants and their paperwork, has sorted their accommodation and has communicated all this with Caen.

August

We will send an intern to Caen City Hall and Abbaye aux Hommes to work as an English-Speaking Tour Guide. This year for the 75th Anniversary Caen is offering the possibility of this internship being extended from mid-July to mid-September.

Caen will send us an intern to work at Portsmouth’s iconic Spinnaker Tower for the month of August – 4 weeks. This intern requires accommodation – Ann B has offered to accommodate

August 10th to 17th – Visit from Duisburg’s Portsmouth Freunde.

They have a very packed itinerary normally. People will be able to come and eat or just have drinks later on the Wednesday evening at the Innlodge, Burrfields Road, hosted by Southsea Castle Rotary Club.

They will have a reception with the Lord Mayor at Portsmouth Guildhall on the Friday morning.

AS will organise another activity in Portsmouth for them on the Wednesday daytime too. (If you contact AS, you are welcome to come to that event too)

Are there people interested in perhaps hosting individuals, couples or families from Duisburg and exchanging with them? Let AS know…

August 10th and 11th – Portsmouth International Kite Festival

We hope to have a presence and will invite Portsmouth Ambassadors to support and promote their work too

What could we do on our stall? - Ideas please to AS Support from the committee?

2020 70 years of twinning with Duisburg - We need to make a big deal of this anniversary!

Friday, January 24th at Portsmouth Guildhall - Confirmed, hosted by Lord Mayor of Portsmouth , Cllr. David Fuller.

Annual main fundraiser to support the ECTC in promoting links with Caen and Duisburg throughout Portsmouth.

Fine Voice Academy are working on a show to bring to Duisburg for Duisburg 70 (2020) – Sören Link, Jürgen Hördt, Karin Reiche, Alexa Polachowski – Duisburg (PF) has extended an official invite working on the Week in May of half term here in Portsmouth.

Vicky Halliday & Paul Joyce (UoP) are working on a school to school project…

Erica Smith - Portsmouth Festivities are working on a Duisburg 70 thread for the 2020 Portsmouth Festivities.

All other ideas welcome – let’s start planning now!

(This will appear here on or around July 1st, 2019)

***************************************************************************************************************************************

The information below was published on April 28th, 2019.

Chair's Report for ECTC meeting April 30th 2019.

A list of events can always be found at tinyurl.com/caenduisevents

A report on the Westlake Brothers Visit from March is available on this blog on this page.

A report on the visit to Westminster arranged for the Caen comité de jumelage members by Stephen Morgan MP on Wednesday April 24th is available on this blog on this page.

A report on the Police Football Match between Caen and Calvados Police and Hampshire Constabulary can be found on this blog on this page.

May Day Bank Holiday Weekend (4th, 5th & 6th) – The Lord Mayor’s Rural and Seaside Show.

We have a presence and will invite Portsmouth Ambassadors to support and promote their work too. Can any committee member please help us?

What could we do on our stall? - Ideas please to AS

Tuesday May 14th – Mayor Making

It is possible to attend the ceremony in the morning. If you would like to sit with the twinning delegation, please contact AS in the first instant and we can arrange your seat to be in those rows. AS will liaise with PCC for seating arrangements.

N.B. The deadline has passed to guarantee sitting with us… You can probably still get tickets by contacting Lydia or going to the city library.

We are expecting from our twin cities: Oberbürgermeister Sören Link and Lydia Steinhauer from Duisburg, M. Pascal Pimont from Caen and possibly some other representatives from the city of Caen. Also, representatives from other sister cities and partnership cities are likely to attend.

Major Forthcoming Project – D-Day 75 and the arrival of Veni Vidi, Canto

Notes from the meeting about Saturday June 8th held at St Mary’s Church on Wednesday March 13th. Updated information since this meeting as well.

Veni, Vidi, Canto arrive on the morning ferry. Normally this ferry would arrive at 6:45 and they should be in the ferry terminal by around 7:15.

N.B. Le Village des Sens in Normandy is promoting a day trip to Portsmouth for this very visit. If there are any takers from Normandy, we will also have some Caen people no doubt coming along to this and to part one of the St Mary’s Concert (they need to leave by 9pm to get to the ferry terminal on time) AS to confirm arrangements once known.

The PCC Officer in charge of the Hotwalls Studios (Chrissie McQueen) has invited VVC to sing at the Hotwalls from around 9:00 as the Boudicca with the veterans and VIPs on board is due to come into the harbour around 9:15. So a big fuss can be made about their presence in Portsmouth as the veterans return from Caen.

(I am sure it is not a problem for anyone else who would like to come down and meet them to do so. They will no doubt be having breakfast /drinks somewhere nearby before they feature.)

Brian Moles at St Mary’s has said it ought to be possible to organise for performers to come in during the morning to practise – rehearse etc.

Afternoon – St Mary’s has a wedding from 4 to 5 – so allow 3:00 – 5:30 for that to happen.

17:30 practice times available for VVC and any others who wish to help practise and set up.

19:00 We open the doors to spectators (Becki Short & Friends)

19:30 White Cliffs of Dover for all

All timings approximate

19:35 St Mary’s Choir

19:50 FVA

20:05 Becki

20:15 VVC

20:30 Haven Community Choir

20:45 Interval (Becki to direct)

21:00 Brass Band (via HCC and Julie W)

21:05 FVA

21:20 Becki

21:35 Local vocals

21:45 VVC

Pause for remembrance and silence

22:00 We'll meet again for all

Compere: Ken Ebbens, will be very happy to link the evening together as he does for FVA shows and rotary events – Perhaps a quick welcome announcement and thank you for coming from Andrew (1 minute) at 19:30 while everyone gathers together for White Cliffs…)

Dress code(s): tbc (usual performance wear or, if required 1940s if your set reflects 1940s – an idea – comments to AS?)

Refreshments: Ken E - following up with Gemma (Tesco) and Anna Marie (Co-op)

tinyurl.com/caendday75 is a webpage which holds as much information as we currently have. It will be updated with news when it is confirmed – do send information about yourselves if it is not already there on the page.

Tickets can be booked via Eventbrite for free link is on tinyurl.com/caendday75

****************************************************************************

What is known about Sunday 9th June.

VVC have been invited to go to the Spinnaker Tower by around 9:30 for photo opps and then a few songs somewhere one the tower is open.

The New Theatre Royal (also linked on the page tinyurl.com/caendday75)

VVC are performing 2 songs in act one and 2 songs in act 2 chosen by Scott Ramsey from the list they provided at The New Theatre Royal.

We are still working on them being around at various events in the city on Sunday.

FVA and becki Short have had speerate meetings with Scott Ramsay at The New Theatre Royal and know what they are doing for this performance, which is free for veterans, should they wish to attend.

Scott is planning a very big ‘spectacle’ as the French would call it based on D-Day 75 – this promises to be an apt closure to the events over the week.

There is much going on in the city, but our events do offer alternatives to the Southsea Common events, which will no doubt also be well attended on Saturday evening. (There is something happening at the Guildhall in association with D-Day Story too.)

Veni, Vidi, Canto leave on Monday 10th June on the morning ferry.

Further information re: D-Day Celebrations:

Brittany Ferries are supporting the Portsmouth ECTC with a visit for Becki Short, a photographer (and Andrew as chair, guide and interpreter) to go to Caen for June 30th

Caen are holding a Retro-Festival – celebrating 100 years of Citroën and 60 years of the British icon the Mini.

Ability to perform at the Festival still to be confirmed, however plenty of opportunity to do promo material. AS will begin to organise opportunities once photographer is confirmed and tickets are secured…

Claudine Cerisier of the Caen version of twinning committee is going to attempt to organise a concert for Becki Short to perform.

Caen have said they will be happy to work with FVA, Becki etc on future events they are holding… So, watch this space…

Wednesday 5th June – Main feature and events in Portsmouth

Around 2,500 VIPs in Portsmouth on the common Most likely Donald Trump, Macron A Senior Royal or two… other world leaders – An event in the morning and lunch then off to Caen on the Bouddica Ship

Thursday 6th June – Main feature and events in Caen. Ceremony at the D-Day Memorial on South Parade at 11am (We will lay a wreath on behalf of the city of Caen).

The Lord Mayor of Portsmouth is likely to be in Caen.

Thursday 6th June to Friday 7th June

A delegation from the University of Portsmouth is going to the University of Caen to sign an official twinning link of co-operation between the two universities.

Friday June 7th to Monday June 10th – A small group from Portsmouth will visit their exchange partners in Caen – We are looking to extend and rebuild this 32-year-old exchange of friends and families – Do you know anyone?

The reciprocal visit to Portsmouth is due in June 2020 – could you or anyone you know, host someone, a couple, a family from Caen? A Brazier, S Hopgood and J Hill (FSIP) we need one more at least…

****************************************************************************

Information on our other forthcoming projects:

There are planned visits from Caen on June 8th for D-Day 75 festivities, June 22nd, July 9th, July 20th, August 29th, September 21st and November 30th (Festival of Christmas)

Sunday June 16th – Les Courants de la Liberté

A group of runners are travelling to Caen to run on behalf of Portsmouth in Caen’s Les Courants de la Liberté.

KCH is collating all entrants and their paperwork, has sorted their accommodation and has communicated all this with Caen.

August

We will send an intern to Caen City Hall and Abbaye aux Hommes to work as an English-Speaking Tour Guide. This year for the 75th Anniversary Caen is offering the possibility of this internship being extended from mid-July to mid-September.

Caen will send us an intern to work at Portsmouth’s iconic Spinnaker Tower for the month of August – 4 weeks. This intern requires accommodation – Ann B has offered to accommodate

August 10th to 17th – Visit from Duisburg’s Portsmouth Freunde.

They have a very packed itinerary normally, but AS will arrange for them to have dinner in Southsea and invite interested parties to dine with the German visitors. People will be able to come and eat or just have drinks later on in the evening.

They will have a reception with the Lord Mayor at Portsmouth Guildhall on the Friday morning.

AS will organise another activity in Portsmouth for them on the Wednesday daytime too. (If you contact AS, you are welcome to come to that event too)

Are there people interested in perhaps hosting individuals, couples or families from Duisburg and exchanging with them? Let AS know…

August 10th and 11th – Portsmouth International Kite Festival

We hope to have a presence and will invite Portsmouth Ambassadors to support and promote their work too

What could we do on our stall? - Ideas please to AS Support from the committee?

2020 70 years of twinning with Duisburg - We need to make a big deal of this anniversary!

Friday, January 24th at Portsmouth Guildhall

Annual main fundraiser to support the ECTC in promoting links with Caen and Duisburg throughout Portsmouth.

Fine Voice Academy are working on a show to bring to Duisburg for Duisburg 70 (2020) – Sören Link, Jürgen Hördt, Karin Reiche, Alexa Polachowski – Duisburg (PF) has extended an official invite working on the Week in May of half Term here in Portsmouth.

Vicky Halliday & Paul Joyce (UoP) are working on a school to school project…

Erica Smith - Portsmouth Festivities are working on a Duisburg 70 thread for the 2020 Portsmouth Festivities.

All other ideas welcome – let’s start planning now!

(This will appear here on or around April 29th 2019)


The websites listed below are for respective members only as they include information on events, venues and times... They do require passwords, ask me if you need one or any of them.

Our Friends of Portsmouth Twinning members page is here

Our French Speakers in Portsmouth group has a website here

Our German Speakers in Portsmouth group has a website here

Our Italian Speakers in Portsmouth group has a website here


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