This web site has been put together by Michael Hammond and Nicole Berríos-Ortega in Education Studies University of Warwick. Its aim is to stimulate interest in Coventry's twinned cities by:
- providing links to the wide range of resources on twinning already available
- celebrating past work on twinning and inspired by twinning
- introducing the cities we are twinned with
- showing where to find out more and how to take part in international friendship
We have a particular interest in the educational dimension of twinning.
We would particularly like to thank Linda Hirons and Dave Hirons at the Coventry Association for International Friendship (CAIF) for their advice and input during the project and for telling us about their past experiences of school visits to twinned cities. We acknowledge all the work that CAIF does to support international friendship. Via CAIF, we met Olga Lawson who gave us insight into the Coventry and Volgograd Bond of Friendship Committee, the Twin & Sister Cities Forum, UK and Russia Federation and Sister Cities Forum who provided personal testimony of the importance of Coventry's link with Volgograd.
Further thanks to Ryan Hughes, Founder and Artistic Director of Coventry Biennial, who told us about how twinning has inspired the exhibition The Twin; John Yeadon, chair of Coventry Dresden Art Exchange, who explained the close cooperation with Dresden artists; Alice Farnhill, at the Community of the Cross of Nails, who told us about Coventry Cathedral's networks with faith groups across the world; Joanna Kunda who helped us understand Coventry's link with Poland and the activity of the Senza Nome choir in Coventry. Thanks also to Eleanor Nesbitt, University of Warwick, for providing background on Jalandhar, India; Kathrin Schutrumpf for telling us about living in Coventry and Dresden; Robert Caesar for helping with a background to Galați, Romania; Katie Read and Ian Davies for memories of taking drama abroad. Meanwhile in local schools, Rhys Davies, at Cardinal Newman school, and Rebecca Bollands, Howes Community primary school, brought us up to date on school twinning. Rhys explained not just about promoting school twinning but relayed his own experiences of visiting Jinan; Rebecca described what made primary school visits distinctive. Thanks to both.
In producing our animation, seen on the front page of this site, we had the pleasure of working with Gemma Foy at letsanimate and with Callum Maciver who provided the voiceover. The translations for the text into Polish, German and Chinese (mandarin) were provided by, respectively, Malwina Jozefiak, Kristina Scheder and Jiefei Gao.
Our twinned cities project was supported by a small grant from the City of Culture fund at the University of Warwick. We would like to thank Grit Brendecke, Modern languages, University of Warwick, for her early input into the project, particularly on international visits, and India Foster and colleagues at the The City of Culture University Partnership Team for providing us with advice as we encountered COVID19 lock down. Our animation work was further supported by small grant from Coventry Creates a joint University of Warwick / Coventry university initiative to bring academic research to life.
These people are not around to thanks but we acknowledge a debt of gratitude to past Coventry civic and church leaders who, inspired by a belief that the horrors of war must never be repeated, worked to promote twinning and international friendship in the aftermath of the second world war.
Finally, we have tried to acknowledge all the links and sources we have used on the site but please contact us if we have missed anything. Apologies in advance for any oversight. This was very much conceived as a 'testing the water' project and there are great many more people to meet and many more stories to hear. We hope we can pick up this work in the future.