At their annual lunch, the Friends of Bielefeld, Rochdale’s German twin-town association celebrated another successful year. The most notable event in the past year was the annual exchange visit, when twenty Rochdale members were generously entertained for a week in the homes of members of “Friends of Rochdale” in the modern city of Bielefeld. During the visit, old friendships were renewed and new ones created. As well as sampling wonderful German hospitality at home, trips were made to the nearby town of Lemgo, noted for its “Renaissance Style” architecture and the palatial home of Alfred Krupp in Essen.
Other fund raising events during the year included several quiz nights and a German style breakfast. The funds will go towards the return visit of our German friends in September 2012. Our friends from Bielefeld are always interested to see historical and modern sights of Rochdale. This year’s programme will also include visits to newly regenerated Blackpool and Salford Quays.
People, who would like to become members and who would like to know more about hosting one or two people from Bielefeld are welcome to contact Friends of Bielefeld through our webpage contact link.
Recent News and Forthcoming Events
We enjoyed a teasingly quizzical quiz on 16th June at the Woolworth’s Social Club, Gipsy Lane with Quiz master Ray Needham, Frucht Bowle and nibbles were enjoyed by over 25 members and friends
Trip to Bielefeld September 2011
Despite departure being delayed until Saturday, the visit was a great success. After eventually arriving, Verena and Reiner kindly hosted all of us in their house and garden on the Saturday afternoon/evening. Many old friendships were rekindled and new ones made. The main meals were very tasty buffets in restaurants, one of the two days out was by train to Lemgo with a guided tour of this renaissance inspired town, followed by lunch in a local restaurant and a short walk to an artist’s house. The other official day out was by coach to Essen and the Krupp family chateau, the light lunch of Erbsentopf was followed by an organ concert and a meal at Georgio’s Restaurant on return to Bielefeld. Another highlight in the official programme was a visit to Dr Oetker’s Factory Site in Bielefeld where we were taken on a tour of “Oetkerworld”, which showed the fascinating history of this family business and showed current day scale of their activities (1.6million pizzas made per day by this company). Can we find such a company trip?
I’m sure many of you have photos, which you would like to show to other members and we hope to arrange for a display board for prints you have made at a future social event.
Several of us met with the Burgermeister’s assistant for twinning Olaf Selonke in the Bielefeld Rathaus, where we presented greetings and a souvenir from Rochdale’s Mayor Alan Dodson and discussed penpal schemes between Rochdale and Bielefeld Primary Schools and how commercial activity between the two towns could be fostered. Olaf agreed to ensure that we are kept informed of future exchange projects between the youth of Rochdale and Bielefeld. Our deputy Mayor James Gartside informed Olaf of next year’s Mayor Making date.
Other Fund Raising Events to put in your diary
March 2012 Entertainments evening with live music and performers. Ideas & participants welcome.