Representatives from Greystones have recently returned from the Holyhead Festival in Wales after marking the ten-year anniversary of the two towns' twinship.
Greystones Councillor Stephen Stokes was amongst the group who attended the weekend of celebration, seeing the visit as informative and enjoyable.
“It was a very positive visit, once again we received a very warm and hospitable reception from everybody in Holyhead” Cllr Stokes said, “Throughout the festival there was a stand promoting Greystones and County Wicklow as a visitor destination, we were thrilled with that. It was great to have that promotion between the two towns and to see what they are doing."
He added: “The critical thing is that these are towns that can actually get to each other, previously Greystones was twinned with a small village in the middle of France that nobody could get to, except Councillors on junkets. Twinning should be about people and community, not about Councillors having a jolly up! You want to make it work for both communities.”
The annual parade was the highlight of the festival with Greystones Cllr. Derek Mitchell and his wife, Carol, featuring in the procession in their vintage 1964 Mercedes Benz Pagoda.
The group, which also included Kay Coughlan from Greystones Municipal District and former Mayor Kathleen Kelleher, enjoyed a guided visit to RAF Valley where they spent an afternoon at the airfield, posing for a photo with a Texan training aircraft and even trying out the flight simulator.
Flight Lieutenant Phil McQuade explained Royal Air Force operations at the base, where Prince William trained.
The Greystones delegation met with Holyhead’s local MP, Virginia Crosbie, as well as the town’s Mayor, Adrienne Edwards during their visit and made a special presentation to Mayor Edwards.
To mark 10 years of twinning, Cllr. Stephen Stokes presented the Holyhead Mayor with a framed photo taken by James Griffin of The Boat Yard Gallery at Greystones Harbour Marina. It shows Greystones’ North Beach looking towards Holyhead.
Holyhead twinning partners will pay a return visit this November for Greystones’ Christmas Lights. They will bring the famous Holyhead Santa with them as well as the Holyhead Male Voice Choir.
The choir will perform a joint concert with the Holyhead McGee Brothers traditional band at the Whale Theatre on November 19.