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Antipasto at The Goth ... Now for The Visits 'Programma' to Barga ..

Falling in Love with Barga

The Mayor of Barga came to The Prestoungrange Gothenburg on September 19th to sign formally the Twinning Agreement between his Tuscany mountain town and those of us who dwell in the Preston Lodge School 'Catchment Area' - which in practice means Prestonpans, Cockenzie, Port Seton and Longniddry. Our Poet Laureate John Lindsay took the opportunity to present a copy of his poem to honour the occasion, translated into Italian of course!

click on all images to enlarge
Questo... Il Prestoungrange

The choir from Preston Lodge sang at The Reception and a welcome return guest to The Goth after no less than 35 Years was John Bellany - last seen here performing in a band at wedding receptions and other gigs. [We need more of that story one can tell already.] John Bellany has of course lived in Barga since he recovered his health and surely had more than a little to do with the twinning arranged. He is pictured below with long time friend Sandy Moffat formerly Dean of Glasgow College of Art and Master Class Leader at our recent Global Murals Conference in August 2006. Many other friends of Barga and of the towns represented in East Lothian enjoyed the evening as can be seen.

The Reception The Reception The Reception
The Reception The Reception The Reception
The Reception The Reception

The Signing Ceremony was the curtain raiser on a week spent meeting school children and civic leaders and spending a moment to remember those from The Pans who fell with the International Brigade in the '30s Spanish Civil War in which the Mayor of Barga's own father fought. The commemorative plaque is in Memorial Square at the foot of Ayres Wynd in The Pans.

The local press told the twinning story as shown below:

East Lothian Courier 29th September 2006

'Further' Travel Plans to Barga are already being made

The twinning arrangements are likely to be a success not just for the youngsters who will get the opportunity for exchange visits. Members of the Three Harbours Festival including the Prestoungrange Arts Festival have plans afoot to arrange a 'group visit' there; and others still are keen to exchnge ideas for the Jazz Festival in Barga, which could certainly liven lives up in the Pans as well.

The in depth reconaissance has already been made and reported here. There could not be a more welcoming town in Tuscany for us all - it is after all not known as Italy's most Scottish town without good cause

Published Date: September 19th 2006

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