Thursday, February 26, 2009
When Town Twinning Falls Into Disrepute
I see there are plans for Worcester to be twinned with Gaza City. The loony left really are back in vogue, aren't they? The councillor behind the move, though, is Labour councillor Alan Amos. I think it's the same Alan Amos that served as a Conservative MP from 1987 to 1992 before defecting to Labour after having to stand down from Parliament after a personal scandal. It certainly looks like him.
Town twinnings are fantastic arrangements and can have long lasting effects on people's lives. But I really hate it when politics intervene in the arrangements. There are many ways to make political points, but grandstanding like Amos is doing does no good at all.
My home town of Saffron Walden is twinned with the German spa town of Bad Wildungen (see pic). They are similar size towns, with similar facilities and a similar social make-up. I went on two school exchanges and made life long friendships as a result. I worked there in my gap year. I wonder if I would have had such an enriching experience if Saffron Walden had been twinned with Beirut. I suspect not. Mainly because I would not have been able to go there. But no doubt Labour councillors in Saffron Walden (not that there were very many!) would have felt they had made a point. Just as they did when they tried to make the town a nuclear free zone. The fact that it already was a nuclear free zone seemed to have passed them by...