We'll keep up twinning tradition vow Notts residents
BUDGETS for town twinning schemes are being slashed by councils across Notts, but residents have vowed that the tradition will continue.
In many cases individual clubs, towns or parish councils have taken on responsibility for maintaining the links.
Gedling Borough Council last week slashed its twinning budget by £10,000 and many other councils have made reductions in recent years.
Nottingham City Council halted its twinning budget three years ago.
The city has been twinned with Karlsruhe in Germany since 1969 and, in 1982, the Nottingham Karlsruhe Friendship Club was formed.
Chairman of the club Arnold Butler said: "We've been able to learn about the German culture and have formed a strong bond with the citizens of Karlsruhe. Also, we have been able to get people from Nottingham jobs over there and vice versa."
After the council budget was cut, the friendship club has had to ask its members for more contributions.
But Mr Butler added: "Whenever we organise trips over there, we are put up with families and the council provides us with tram tickets so we can get from one place to another.
"They always treat us very well. Maintaining the link is hugely important."
Nottingham's new tram bridge over the station has been named the Karlsruhe Friendship Bridge after links with Karlsruhe helped the city council in its development of NET.
Councillor Alan Clarke, lead councillor for international relations, said the council still contributed to individual projects.
Exchange trips to twin town Ningbo in China were among these, he said.
"It is important we are able to put our business people in touch with business people from abroad," he added.
Gedling Borough Council is twinned with European towns – Rotenburg an der Fulda, Germany, Vandoeuvre les Nancy, France, and Messolonghi, in Greece.
Councillor John Clarke, leader of Gedling Borough Council, said: "We have some difficult decisions to make and local services are our first priority."
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