Exchange Visit to Shelford

Report on the Twinning Visit from Verneuil-en-Halatte to Shelford

5–8 July 2014

As it is 25 years since the signing of the Twinning Charter in Shelford, we knew that this summer’s visit was going to be special, and indeed popular.  We weren’t wrong!  A party of around 50 adults, children and teenagers arrived on Saturday evening 5 July.  The group spanned the ages – from the older seasoned Twinners, to the family groups with children to the teenagers who were keen to join in the fun and improve their English.

The first evening kicked off with a ceilidh and buffet supper, provided partly by the Twinning Association, and partly by the host families.  A good time was had by all – and indeed all participated, thanks in part to the talents of our bi-lingual caller!

Sunday was an early start for our visitors, as a trip to London had been planned.  In the morning they had a look in the Science Museum, followed by a trip on the Underground and a picnic lunch in Green Park.  By this time the weather was beautiful, and the group walked from Buckingham Palace to the London Eye, taking in Horse Guards Parade, Downing Street. Westminster Abbey, the Houses of Parliament and finally crossing Westminster Bridge. They were all thrilled with the experience of being able to see so many sights at close quarters.
The day was rounded off with a trip on the London Eye.

Monday was our ‘Family Day’, as most of our host families had opted to have a day off work to enjoy the spectacle of the Tour de France.  Again the weather was great and the morning terrific fun for all.  The afternoon was leisurely, but many of the teenagers went into Cambridge independently for a bit of excitement!

Tuesday morning (their final morning) provided an opportunity for the adults and teenagers to wander round Cambridge and do a bit of shopping, whilst the younger children had a morning in Shelford School.  We are grateful to the school for welcoming us so warmly.

The next visit to Verneuil will be at Easter 2015, with a return visit to Shelford in July.

Sarah Haddow

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