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Friendship Towns

Bedford Borough Council also has friendship links to Arezzo in Italy and Wloclawek in Poland.



Arezzo is the only Italian chief town to have been one of the "lucumonies" of ancient Etruria under the rule of King Porsenna. Evidence pertaining to the town's long history that dates back to the dawn of civilisation, can be seen today in its four museums, in its Medieval and Renaissance churches and in its prestigious buildings of splendid architecture where countless works of art are preserved.

The extraordinary intellectual achievements that took place in the town have certainly influenced culture worldwide. Worthy of mention are the ancient bronzes (the most famous is the Chimera that dates back to the 5th Century B.C.), invention of the dinner service (Marco Perennio, 30 B.C.), invention of the musical notation (Guido Monaco 1000 A.D.), scientific evolution of medicine (Andrea Cesalpino 16th Century, and Francesco Redi 17th Century), invention of the rules of perspective in pictorial art (Piero della Francesca, 15th Century).

As Carducci, the poet, once said "Arezzo alone is enough to glorify Italy".

Please click here to download information for disabled people visiting Arezzo.

The tradition of Arezzo continues today thanks to its versatile and resourceful citizens who have gained international fame within the sphere of various sectors: jewellery, leather, clothing and furniture industries as well as technological advances.

Arezzo Web site: http://www.comune.arezzo.it/


Wloclawek, situation by the Vistula River and its tributary, the Zglowiczka, is the capital of the Kujawy region. It has an area of 85 square kilometres and a population of 124,000.

Wloclawek is one of the oldest settlements in Poland. About 5,000 years ago at the estuary of the Zglowilczka river to the Vistula the first Vloclavians settled down. The favourable geographical conditions, unique environment were the reason, in spite of many fires and distractions, high and lows, the town has survived to our times, keeping its unique structure. There are no other such towns with its Old Town on the very bank of the river and with a breathtaking view of the Szpetal Hills.

Whilst there are very few things that have remained untouched from the ancient times, the history can still be found in the backyards of the 19th Century tenement houses and sleeps in the proud towers of the Cathedral testifying the splendour of the medieval town.

Wloclawek's tourist attractions include:

the Willany Reservoir (with 75 square kilometres it is the third largest reservoir in Poland).

The Wloclawsko-Gostynilski Landscape Park (with 9 tourist trails)

forests, lakes, nature reserves and numerous historical buildings.

For those who would like to experience the Gothic era, there is a great opportunity to admire precious monuments of architecture and sacred art. For those who prefer an active form of rest there are stables, excursions to the nature parks and the wild banks of the Vistula river. The tremendous Vloclavian Bay has very good conditions for sailing. There are few such places where you can see Moses' burning bush (Dictamnus albus) in its natural environment and a falconry display, where you can admire the golden eagle and the majestic moose.

To get to know the country is to get to know its tradition and culture. In the Vloclavian museums you can see a unique collection of hand painted Vloclavian faience and a very rare collection of measures and scales. Coming to our Ethnographic Park you can become the eyewitness of the authentic customs and folk ceremonies and you can see them during the old custom of carnival march on the streets of the town.

Present day Wloclawek is above all a centre of industry and of services for the region's agriculture. The town's various industires (chemical, food, high precision, metal and light) constitute the bases of its economy.

Wloclawek is a great place to invest in for many reasons:

its location in the centre of the country

land and buildings of bankrupt industrial factories, available for development

extensive municipal infrastructure (a sewage treatment plant, a garbage dump, large supplies of good quality underground water).

cheap and qualified labour

agricultural reserves

Town Promotion and Development Office - tel. (4854) 4124420
e-mail : promocja@um.wlocl.pl, informatyka@um.wlocl.pl
Website: http://www.um.wlocl.pl/

Harrold/Sainte Pazanne
The Harrold Twinning association was originally formed in 1992. St Pazanne is a small town in the north-west of France. Every two years members from Harrold and the surrounding area visit St Pazanne, and on alternate years, members of St Pazanne's Twinning Association return the visit. Visit Harrold website at http://www.harrold.info/HarroldSiteManager/harroldtwinningassociation/index.asp?n=  for more information.


Great Barford/Wöllstein

Great Barford was officially twinned with Wöllstein in Germany in 1978 when the twinning charter was signed by the then Chairman of the Parish Council and the Burgermeister of Wöllstein.

Every two years members from Great Barford visit Wöllstein and on alternate years, members of Wöllstein Twinning Association return the visit.  Visit Great Barford Twinning Partnership website at http://www.greatbarfordpartnership.co.uk/ for more information.


Don't Miss

Kite Festival

Bedford Borough is a vibrant area to live in with an abundance of leisure opportunities for residents and visitors. We pride ourselves on offering a fantastic programme of cultural events throughout the year, and providing a wide range of affordable health opportunities, through our quality parks, award winning leisure centres and sports development work.


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