Visit to Jersey from Bad Wurzach Partnerscaft committee.
It was with great pleasure that the St Helier/ Bad Wurzach Partnerschaft recently hosted a visit to the Island from our German counterparts. It was so good to see them again and be able to return the excellent hospitality we had received when we visited Bad Wurzach last September. It was also a return visit for the Mayor of Bad Wurzach Alexandra Scherer who came last June for the late Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations . We welcomed 5 members of the Bad Wurzach Partnerschaft , from Germany who joined in with our celebrations of King Charles ‘ Coronation on May 6th and the Island’s Liberation on May 9th.Although the weather over the long weekend could have been kinder, it did not seem to spoil our visitors’ enjoyment of all the official and unofficial events and activities they attended.
On Saturday morning they were able to watch the Coronation Ceremony which was screened live in the Town Hall and also attend the Liberation Day celebrations and re – enactments in Liberation Square on May 9th. In between our guests visited some of the beauty spots and historic sites around the Island and also enjoyed meals in local restaurants sampling the Indian and Thai cuisines. On Monday 8th there was a very special discussion forum called “How We Remember”. Held in the Town Hall and hosted by the external relations minister Philip Ozouf . Led by Dr Gilly Carr, an expert on the Second World War , it focused on the various ways we have commemorated and recorded events of the past, in particular the Second World War and the Holocaust. Frau Scherer was included on the panel of speakers as was the German Ambassador to the UK and the Mayor of Dorsten. A town in Northern Germany , during World War 2 Dorsten had a transit camp for deportees , through which some of our Islanders travelled in 1942 on their way to Bad Wurzach. The main thrust of many of the speakers including Frau Scherer was the importance of reconciliation and education. She emphasised how important our Partnerschaft has been in forging links between us . In the afternoon some of our older members and deportees were able to meet with Frau Scherer and our visitors while enjoying afternoon tea . Our 5 guests were presented with a gift bag each containing local Genuine Jersey products. On the afternoon of Liberation Day Frau Scherer, the German Ambassador and the Mayor of Dorsten all laid wreaths at the German Soldiers’ memorial at St Brelade’s Church before attending the Slave Workers’ wreath laying ceremony at Westmount.
While it was a very full and active 4 days it was a very enjoyable time and we look forward to their Youth Band’s visit for the Battle of flowers and other future events .