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• Le site de Bourne End (photos)
• Le site de Furci Siculo
• Les Adhérents (et Amis du Jumelage)
Twinning with “Bourne End”: a good job done !
The Town Council took this initiative almost five years ago.
The CJO or Twinning committee of Octeville-Sur-Mer held its first meeting on December 19th 2001. This association on the basis of the French 1901 law was founded on March 11th 2002.
As time was passing by, contacts were made with Germany, England, Poland, Russia, Portugal, Greece ( the island of Rhodes ), Ireland ( Greystone) and Belgium ( Osterzeele near Bruges ). All this was going at a good pace.
In October, Bourne End contacted us. On November 27th 2002, we visited Bourne End. The committee members met their BEBTA counterparts. A video report was shot on that occasion and shown on December 6th 2002 to the Mayor, his assistants and councillors during a CJO special meeting. On Monday December 16th 2002, in front of the Mayor, the film was projected again. After a long debate lasting two hours and a half , a massive vote opted for Bourne End with 10 in favour and 2 who abstained with 12 people present.
Bourne End counts about 5,500 inhabitants and is located by the Thames river 30 miles west of London. It is adjacent to Wooburn and both small cities are managed by Wooburn Parish which can be compared with our town council.At the west, we can find Marlow and south, Maidenhead & Cookham.
Bourne End is situated 90 miles north of Portsmouth, so it is a three hours’ drive by coach or only two by car . As there is a small station, the heart of London is just 40 or 50 minutes by train from there, depending on the time you take it.
Charter Signing in Octeville on 6th April 2003
At first sight, Bourne End and Octeville-sur-Mer are quite complementary: this typically English city is surrounded by fields, woods and hills, it has no supermarket but 50 or 60 local shops. Its double-decker buses and thatched cottages in the Abbotsbrook district, its pubs, the River, the Marina and boats club dating back from 1884 as on a traditional postcard. Last but not least, the warmful welcome we receive from Sandrine, Gill, Arlene, Pearl, Marie, Penny, Rob, Stuart, Mike, Peter, Brian.....
Bourne End is built on the Thames left bank ( the river is 80m wide at that point ) . The right bank is a natural park forbidden to cars and a good idea if you feel like walking, except you need a boat to cross !
Various sports are available: badminton, basket-ball, golf, rowing, climbing, football, judo, roller-skating, hockey, swimming, sailing, table tennis. Criket and rugby can be practised in private clubs nearby. The local Sports Club is much favoured by 6 to 16 year-olds. Another private Sports Centre can be used in Wooburn.
Other activities are proposed: chess, bridge, jazz, dance, parlour games, gardening association, picnics by the river, library with a children’s corner, CD and video library, Internet training course...
photographs and video clips have already been exchanged by e-mail with our
We have shared views on an active partnership in several fields, in particular with the young, between Jules Verne elementary school and Claytons school in Bourne End, between both football, judo associations and rowing clubs. But not only the young, all ages can be concerned and find this twinning profitable. Learning about the customs on the other side of the Channel, so near and so different ( have you ever driven in England ??), improving their language practice, discovering new sceneries walking by the river, going to London to do some shopping, seeing our neighbours’ way of living, making new friends, bringing people closer......
We now hope to organise an official visit to Bourne End in 2004 – 2006 – 2008 and so on and BEBTA hopes to plan an official visit to Octeville in 2005-2007-2009 and so on. As we started, we said ‘English lessons could be given with the help of the town council.” This is plenty done at the moment for CJO is organising 4 English lessons of different levels with 4 different teachers and we’re planing a 5th one….
Obviously, when a person or family wants to travel abroad with the CJO, there will be a personal contribution to the expenses. And reciprocally, it is taken for granted that CJO members will accomodate the English family who offered their hospitality.
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