32 adults and five young people from in and around Chevilly arrived in their coach at around 6.30pm on Friday 3 May. After many hugs and handshakes with friends – some old, some new – the visitors dispersed with their hosts to spend the evening "en famille".
On Saturday, after a morning at leisure, both guests and hosts assembled on the village green next to the flags of the United Kingdom, France and the EU. Speeches were given by Andy Anderson, Chairman of the Curry Rivel Parish Council; Hubert Jolliet, Deputy Mayor of Chevilly (with Claude Pelletier, fellow Deputy Mayor, in attendance); Bénédicte Meriau, Chair of the Chevilly Twinning Association; and Barbara Hamlin, Chair of the Curry Rivel & District Twinning Association with contributions from the younger French visitors. All the speeches reaffirmed the commitment and friendship between the two communities both now and in the future. "Twinners" were then invited to have afternoon tea as guests of the Curry Rivel Parish Council. A fabulous selection of cakes, buns and traybakes had been baked by the WI – all up to its usual excellent high standard.
In the evening everyone reconvened in the village hall for a meal of steak and ale pie and trifle followed by entertainment in the form of a barn dance with traditional music provided by Hobson's Choice. The dancing proved a hit as everyone, young and old, got to their feet to join in the fun.
After a late evening everyone was up bright and early for the official excursion to Bath where the French visitors were treated to a tour of the Roman Baths. The rest of the day was spent exploring the city's architecture, shops, restaurants and cafés before heading back to Curry Rivel for the final evening with their hosts.
Following a busy, but enjoyable weekend Monday morning came round all too soon – the sad moment when hosts and guests have to say their goodbyes. However, all knew that this was only an "au revoir" and that we'll see our friends across the Channel once again next year.
For more information on the Curry Rivel & District Twinning Association, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01458 252946.