Bromley Town Twinning Association – Event Reports

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Event reports 2016

Our 2016 trip to Germany

The most important event of our year was the long weekend members spent in our twin town in Germany, Neuwied, from Friday, September 9, to Monday, September 12.

The programme included an outing to the Drachenfels (below), a mountain area on the River Rhine north of Neuwied, to a wine harvest festival in the Rhineside village of Leutesdorf in the Neuwied Council distict, to the site of a Roman fort, and to the home of the first German Chancellor after the war, Konrad Adenauer. Also visiting Neuwied were tennis players from The Park Langley Club to play the Tennis Neuwied club



A spectacular hornpipe greeting at Neuwied for the Bromley visitors

Horn blowers

Wine harvest time in the Rhineside village of Leutesdorf by Neuwied

Leutesdorf queen

One of the many highly-decorated floats

Wine festival

The BTTA party at the Leutesdorf parade – seen to the left of the float

Wine procession

Relaxation tim for BTTA visitors to the festival. Left to right, Kim Botting, Sheila Brown, and Julia Knox

Wine village

The ruins of the old castle

German castle

Time to relax on the terrace and enjoy views of the Rhine

Castle terrace
The stunning view from the terrace

Rhine view

The cog train at the mountain top;

Cog train

Freundeskreis member Dieter Ehlen tries out a Roman chariot at the Römerwelt Roman Villa near Neuwied while his colleague Andy Jung tries to pull him along

Roman chariot

The site of Römerwelt was on the edge of the Roman Empire

Roman soldier

Kaffee and Kuchen rest stop at the villa. From left to right: David Noble (BTTA), Jo Hofmann (Chairman, Freundeskreis), Susan Redden (BTTA), Lynne Noble (BTTA)

Villa stop

Enjoying the villa break

Roman coffee

The home of Konrad Adenauer the post-war leader of West Germany

Adenauer home

At the top of the hillside home in Rhöndorf

German statesman

Leaving the Adenauer home

Adenauer home

Peaceful morning by the Rhine at Neuwied

Rhine morning

Annual General Meeting 2016

Our AGM was held on Tuesday, March 15, at the Bromley Civic Centre and chaired by the Mayor of Bromley, Kim Botting. She told the meeting how much she enjoyed her official mayoral visit to our twin town and now intended to join us all in our biennial visit in September


The meeting was told by BTTA chairman Peter Brown how the association planned during the coming year to expand relations with Bromley schools teaching German.

BBC and British Library Visits

Some 20 members of the Association spent an enjoyable morning in March at the BBC's Broadcasting House headquarters on a guided tour organised for us by Sheila Brown. The highlight The One Show studio. Members’ Newsreading skills and radio drama acting abilities were put to the test during the course of the visit!

And our chairman Peter Brown even met a Dalek.

BBC visit


Following on in June came a visit to the British Library in Euston Road to study this leading research centre in the heart of London and look through the splended modern building. The visit was both educational yet fascinating and thoroughly enjoyed by all.


British Library

The event was over-subscribed, and we had our own private guide, saw lots of historical collections such as the world's biggest atlas and also visited parts of the library normally reserved for Readers. Altogether a thoroughly successful visit.


The amazing Quilt

It’s an amazing symbol of the bonds between our two towns – a quilt of many colours depicting Bromley and Neuwied scenes.

When Councillor Ernest Noad came to the end of his year as Mayor, he and his wife Diane decided that, in thanks for the hospitality given them in Neuwied and by Oberbürgermeister Nikolaus Roth in particular, they would like to have a quilt made up which would give a pictorial representation of the two towns.

They commissioned Beckenham Quilters, and Jenni Mogridge and her colleagues started the task. Their design shows the main features of the towns – and with the rivers Thames and Rhine prominently displayed.

The quilt is made up of three panels, one each for Neuwied and Bromley, and one showing the town shields and a representation of music, which has proved to be an important element in the twinning.

The quilt was presented to Nikolaus Roth on his visit to Bromley earlier this year, by the Mayor of Bromley Councillor Kim Botting, with Ernest and Diane Noad and members of the Beckenham Quilters in attendance. Commented Jenni: “We were both delighted and daunted to be commissioned by Diane Noad to make a quilt for our twin town. We made three banners – depicting Bromley, Neuwied and the music that brings us together.

“Bromley benefits from being close to central London, the Thames and the Kentish countryside whilst Neuwied enjoys the Rhine and lovely surrounding countryside. We

‘painted’ the colours and textures with fabric and appliqued and embroidered other key features. We hope we have captured something of the spirit of both towns and the warm and friendly relationship between them.”

The amazing quilt of many colours from the Beckenham Quilters


Far left, is Diane Noad. Ernest Noad is in the centre of the picture, partially hidden. Far right is Nikolaus Roth, and beside him is the Mayor of Bromley, Councillor Kim Botting. Jenni Mogridge is beside the Mayor.

Two mayors
Close up view of the quilt. From left are pictured: the late Nikolaus Roth, Peter Brown (Chairman BTTA) and Kim Botting

The Bromley telephone box that is changing into a mini library. Inge Gutler of the Freundeskreis Neuwied-Bromley reports

In Germany, many young people now know only about telephone boxes from old films. The fixed boxes have disappeared from our street scenes. Yellow and rectangular, they were useful in their time – for emergencies and contact with distant friends and relatives.

However, Neuwied has a special telephone box. A red, original English kiosk which functioned for a long time on the square in front of the Castle. There it stood after its yellow brothers and sisters had long gone.

Some 30 years ago this box had come as a present from our twin town in England, Bromley, as a symbol of the close relationship between the two towns. But with phone kiosks becoming redundant, the German Telekom organisation did not want to convert the neat red box to expensive card operation. It stood neglected in the square and from being an eye catcher it became in need of restoration.

For a few months the telephone box disappeared – but not for scrapping. It went to the Alice Salomon School where the career preparation year students under the leadership of their teachers Klaus Mallmann (metalwork) and Wolfram Ernst (carpentry) took on its restoration.

For the young people it was their first encounter with a telephone box and they took up their task with great enthusiasm. The kiosk was given new coats of bright red paint and the panes of glass and the complete inside were renewed.

The work was close to the school’s heart as part of its educational vocation work. It gave the pupils a chance to develop themselves and their confidence. But the phone box will no longer serve its original purpose. It will beome a mini-library in the town centre.

Small book shelves have been put inside. Books can be easily borrowed without formality and returned. This mini-library idea has already caught on in many German towns.
Now the kiosk from Bromley will wear a bright new dress and we of the two town twinning associations thank the students and will hope the box brings them all good luck in their careers.

(Note: This has been translated by us from the German so we are responsible for any mistakes. Website editor Richard Redden has now seen a mini-library telephone box in England – by the village green of East Knowle in Wiltshire.)

Under construction – the Bromley post box that is changing into a mini-libraryin our twin town

Red phone box

The red frame and familiar shape of the telephone box

Red library


Darrick Wood forges new Link to Neuwied

We previously reported in our newletter on a German food evening that we had hosted at Bromley College’s Orpington Campus training restaurant, when our guests were teachers and pupils from schools in the Borough where German is taught.

Darrick Wood

Outreach to Bromley’s schools is a priority for us – we have always known that the secondary schools in Neuwied would like to have links with schools in Bromley, and there have been a number of successful exchanges, most recently between Hayes School and the Heinrich-Heine-Realschule.

Among those attending the Orpington evening was the Head of German at Darrick Wood (above), Jamie Meharg, where German is one of the two first languages pupils learn – the other is French. Jamie followed up quickly and has used our twinning links to set up an introductory partnership with Werner-Heisenberg-Gymnasium.

Jamie (below) has also joined our committee and writes: “I look forward to building a long and happy link to WHG and Neuwied. My ultimate hope is to be able to set up a full-blooded exchange programme with annual visits both to and from Neuwied – and not just for my own classes but for all learners of German at Darrick Wood School.

“Viel Glück und viel Vergnügen!”

Jamie Meharg

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