Council Leader, Cllr Caroline Reeves, said: “We first started our partnership in 1979 and have enjoyed an excellent relationship working together, learning and sharing new opportunities and innovation. We share many similarities with Freiburg. Both towns have a rich heritage and invest in future technologies. We are delighted our friends from Freiburg have visited us in our 40th year of twinning and we welcomed them warmly. We have much to learn from Freiburg and we will be keeping in regular touch as we set out our own plans around sustainability and climate change.”
The group from Freiburg joined Mayor of Guildford, Cllr Richard Billington, Council Leader, Cllr Caroline Reeves, and Managing Director, James Whiteman, to tour sites around the borough including the Abbot’s Hospital, the University of Surrey, the Castle Keep and gardens, Silent Pool Distillery and a back stage tour of G Live.
At a special Guildhall dinner to celebrate the 40th anniversary, the Mayor of Guildford, Richard Billington, and Lord Mayor Horn both spoke about how the relationship has thrived and prospered since the twinning agreement was made 40 years ago, and expressed their desire for the friendship to remain as strong as ever in future years.
Freiburg is widely recognised as the most sustainable city in Germany and as one of the birthplaces of the environmental movement. As part of the visit, Simone Pflaum, Freiburg’s Director of Sustainability Management, gave a lecture about the city’s approach to sustainable development. James Whiteman, Managing Director, added: “The lecture was a great example of how our partnership with Freiburg allows us to share ideas and exchange views.”
Mayor of Guildford, Cllr Richard Billington also commented: “We have a strong relationship with Freiburg and have really enjoyed welcoming them to Guildford. We’re keen to showcase our town and its many attractions. Visits like this promote understanding and strengthen the bond between our two towns as we both share a reputation for innovation, history and culture.”