Forest Hill, twinned with Antony, Matagalpa and Charlottenburg

On the hill by Horniman… Forest Hill is twinned with:

Has anyone been to any of our twin towns?

Twinned. What does that mean exactly, does anyone know ?

Does it mean school exchanges take place between these towns? My school did one with one in a twinned town.

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I think it was originally a way of building bridges with the continent after the war

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The Lewisham Choral Society, of which I am a member, has visited both Antony and Charlottenburg to combine with local choirs to sing concerts.


I suppose after Brexit we can kiss goodbye to all that sort of thing.

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I don’t see why. We were twinned with Antony and Charlottenburg prior to the EU.

I don’t know why Charlottenburg was chosen. Halifax Street was called Hanover Street but that was pre WW1. Was there a Bonhoeffer connection maybe???

The Nicaraguan twinning was just a political move originally.

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There is a Lewishamstrasse in Charlottenburg. Antony was originally twinned with Deptford, before it merged with Lewisham in ?1963. It’s about the same size as Deptford, so there’s now a certain asymmetry.


The son of a former Bonhoeffer Pastor now lives in Charlottenburg. So there may be some connection.

That’s awesome. When are you planning a trip to Nicaragua?

Probably needs an invitation from the Matagalpa Choral Society plus a wealthy sponsor to pay the air fares!

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After WW2 many good people, and many good organisations (including most notably, NATO) kept the peace, brought the Allies closer together, and brought former enemies into that alliance. The EU came later.

I cherish the new opportunities available for us to get closer to our old friends - those whose grandparents fought beside our grandparents to protect the European continent from over-ambitious superstate builders of the past.

Germany joined NATO in 1955 and joined the EEC when it was formed in 1957. ECSC (the predecessor of the EEC) was formed in 1951 and included Germany from the beginning (unlike NATO). So the EEC didn’t come so much later but the EU wasn’t officially formed until 1993.

Sorry to be a little political. I blame @Thewrongtrousers for mentioning brexit, although Stalin was also at fault for the Iron Curtain that led to the creation of NATO.

Bonhoeffer was chaplain of the Technical University at Charlottenburg until 1933 when Hitler came to power, and Bonhoeffer came to Forest Hill.

Thank you for confirming my point, Michael.

I was actually being slightly facetious in mentioning the B word. I don’t think for one moment it will stop good people dong their best to make the best of things.


I found this on the Lewisham website…

I actually went to Nicaragua in 2008 (but not Matagalpa) - really interesting - our taxi driver still had his Sandinista membership card from when he was 15. Beats my NUS card.

More on the Sandinistas:

Only in Lewisham would a U.K. council use the twinning system to overtly lend their support to a Marxist junta :flushed:

I would recommend it as an interesting travel destination - go and talk to some of the locals about the education and healthcare reforms. They’re incredibly well educated.

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Sorry to post twice in a row, but I actually checked up on this.

Turns out in fact so does

  • Bristol
  • Leicester
  • Norwich
  • Oxford
  • Reading
  • Sheffield
  • Swindon
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