After three decades, Grasby Twinners have made their last formal visit to St Remy in France.
On this occasions, a party of 14 made the journey, and they were welcomed with a ‘vin de honner’ at the mairie by the mayor of St Rémy, Alain Horpin, who spoke about the friendships established over the past 30 years and the hope this would continue.
On the first day, after a leisurely start, everyone met at St Anne de Champfrémont for a walk to see the fresh water spring, and a picnic lunch was enjoyed by all.
Afterwards, the journey continued to the Haras national stud farm.
There was a guided tour of the stables, the saddlery, the tack room and a display of horse-drawn carriages.
They were also treated to a demonstration of a blacksmith making horseshoes.
The next day there was a visit to the Impressionism Museum of Claude Monet at Giverny and, after lunch, to Monet’s gardens which inspired several of his famous paintings.
They were also able to visit his house, the churchyard where he is buried and wander freely around the other gardens.
A day spent with hosts was followed by an evening at the hall in Pezé-le-Robert for the 30th anniversary meal and presentations.
Alain Horpin presented each of the English families with a book of aerial photographs of the Sarthe region.
Andre Leguy, president of the St Remy twinners, presented Harriet Gillman, chair of the Grasby Twinners, with a golden cockerel .
In return, Harriet presented André with a engraved stone plaque celebrating 30 years of twinning.
It is hoped the twinning can continue in a less formal manner with private visits.