Welcome to Hemyock Friday, August 17 2018 @ 09:37 pm BST

Charter Signing Success!

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“The marriage is concluded, let the Honeymoon begin” said Chairman Brian Clist on the occasion of the Charter signing between the Upper Culm Twining Association and its French partners from St Herblon and Les Villages des Grees, an area bordering the Loire River in the west of the country.

At the end of what was a very busy and interesting weekend, an all age party of nearly 70 French friends, and their enthusiastic host families from the Upper Culm area, gathered in a packed village hall at Hemyock to witness the Charter signed, confirming the twinning arrangements which had been practiced for some 13 years.  Beautiful gifts of pottery and plaques were presented by the parties.

Agnes Carroget (President of the Jumelage des Grées) said how special the relationship between these two beautiful geographic areas had become to her members, with lasting personal friendships developing on both sides.  Mayor of St. Herblon, Gérard Barrier saw the relationship as a perfect reflection of his upbeat assessment of the European Union with common interests being exemplified in the twinning arrangements.  Heather Stallard, Chairman of Hemyock Parish Council, speaking on behalf of local residents saw the relationship having positive implications for generations to come.  Culmstock & Clayhidon Parish Councils were represented by Simon Bramley (Chairman) and Bill Smith respectively.

Earlier in the day, nearly 200 people gathered on the Longmead sports field to enjoy a picnic and witness the planting of a beautiful copper beech tree which is to be a lasting sign of the relationship between the two communities.  The planting led to impromptu dancing and singing led by the French, followed by friendly games of Boules and Rounders.

The busy programme of weekend events included visits to Hemyock and Culmstock Village Schools – where the French party received a good reception, with interesting displays and singing in French and English.  The school children at Hemyock were very interested in trying out their French vocabulary and they will be most welcome to join their parents in visiting France next year as new members of UCTA.  A visit to the  Otter Nurseries – proved most interesting to the French as it is a large and interesting complex – so different to the typical French nurseries with only plants on sale.  A picnic beside the Otter was followed by a visit to the Honiton Lace Museum and, in the evening of the first full day, Skittles at the Catherine Wheel and Half Moon Pubs.

On Saturday morning a visit to Cothay Manor- thought to be one of the finest medieval English Manor houses, constructed in the 14th century and restored and renovated by the present owners Mr & Mrs Robb.  The afternoon communal picnic at Longmead, Hemyock with planting of a copper beech tree by the Mayor of St. Herblon  (M. Gérard Barrier) and The Chairman of Hemyock Parish Council (Mrs Heather Stallard). Brian Clist (Chairman of the Upper Culm Twinning Association and Agnes Carroget (The President of the Jumelage des Grées).

The Saturday evening reception at Hemyock village hall included a dance demonstration by the West Somerset Morris Men dance (with an explanation in French of the costumes worn by them given by one of their team).  A Hog Roast, speeches, gift presentations and dancing rounded out a perfect day and busy but satisfying weekend.

Pictures –
Charter being signed by Heather Stallard (seated) with left to right standing Gerard Barrier,  Agnes  Carroget, Brian Clist, Simon Bramley.
Tree Planting at Longmead – Brian Clist & Agnes Carroget.