Bracknell Twinning Association


Schloss Morsbroich – Morsbroich Palace, Leverkusen

Bracknell Twinning Association works with the Freundeskreis in Leverkusen to arrange regular visits to their partner towns and in particular to facilitate exchanges between local interest groups, schools and sports clubs and for work experience.

Bracknell originally twinned in 1973 with Opladen in Germany, a town of a similar size to itself.  During a local government re-organisation the Opladen local authority was absorbed by Leverkusen, a town of about 160,000 people and the home of the famous Bayer Chemical Works. Leverkusen continued the partnership and is also twinned with several other towns across the world. Leverkusen is just north of Cologne and has a good train service to this city. You can read more about Leverkusen in the “Welcome to Leverkusen” guide. (Link below)

Bracknell Twinning Association works with the Freundeskreis in Leverkusen to arrange regular visits to their partner towns and in particular to facilitate exchanges between local interest groups, schools and sports clubs and for work experience. In recent years the bond of friendship between citizens of the twin towns has been re-kindled with an increasing number of exchanges and joint activities.

Regular updates about exchanges and joint activities are posted on the Council’s Facebook page at

The Bracknell Twinning Association is run by a committee elected each year at its Annual General Meeting. All its meetings are held in the Bracknell Town Council Chamber, usually on Monday evenings at about monthly intervals. Any local resident interested in twinning is welcome to make contact and attend the meetings. Various sports and cultural exchanges take place on a regular basis and the committee is always pleased to facilitate other exchanges for clubs or individuals.

The Association would be pleased to hear from anyone who may be able to offer accommodation to visitors from Leverkusen.

50 Years Successful Twinning : Translation from the Leverkusen Twinning Website


50 years of successful city twinning Leverkusen Bracknell…

.. was the motto of the great trip to England by the twelve-member citizens’ group of the Freundeskreis Bracknell-Leverkusen e.V. (photo on platform 9 ¾ in Waterloo Station) from September 14th to 19th, 2023, and will be the motto of the English return visit in September 2024. The citizen group was accommodated privately by the “hosts”, some of whom have had decades-long friendships and who usually belong to the partner organization Bracknell Twinning Association.

Link to original Leverkusen article in German with photo gallery

The most touching “highlights” were two “celebration evenings” with citizens, club boards and city political representatives. The “Celebration Cake” (photo) was cut by the club chairmen Renate Buchwald and Mary Temperton. In their passionate speeches, mayors Bernhard Marewski and Simon Carter placed the partnership in the context of German-British friendship. Jessica Goronczewski, representative of the city and an assessor in the circle of friends, provides active support.

Here are key words for the real firework of tourist “highlights” with a decidedly British flair: visit to the Bracknell cultural center “South Hill Park”, from London – Westminster Abbey and Houses of Parliament (!) -, from Windsor, Wisley Gardens, Marlow in Buckinghamshire and “Grey’s Court”, known from Downton Abbey, Hercule Poirot and Inspector Barnaby.

The town twinning was founded in 1973 – the year the UK joined the EU’s predecessor, the EEC – by Opladen under the leadership of Mayor Bruno Wiefel and later continued by Leverkusen. Appropriately, the “Table Talk” takes place as a monthly meeting of the circle of friends in the Bruno Wiefel Haus (Kölner Straße 100, every 2nd Monday of the month from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.). There is no need to fear thresholds; the language skills of the participants range from mere listening to almost perfect command of the language.

Always and despite Brexit, it is about partnership, personal encounters and experiences, not about official “shakehands”. The circle of friends, founded in 2001, wants to strengthen close relationships in the spirit of international understanding and European unification and therefore organizes trips, events, lectures, professional internships, exchanges and school contacts.

Bracknell Twinning Members Free to Visit Twin Town Leverkusen Again!


August 2022

Members of Bracknell Twinning, accompanied by Bracknell Town Mayor, Dai Roberts, have just returned from a long, action-packed weekend (12-15 August 2022) with German hosts and friends in Twin Town Leverkusen, Germany, after four years’ ‘No Go’ – primarily due to Covid-19 restrictions in both countries.

In June 2019, members of ‘Freundeskreis Bracknell-Leverkusen’ visited Bracknell, staying with local hosts, for a very exciting programme of social gatherings and sight-seeing – including the Houses of Parliament, a boat trip on the River Thames, Blenheim Palace and Hampton Court.

Unfortunately, a return visit to Leverkusen by Bracknell Twinning in June 2020, which was to include a stay in the Mosel area and a trip on the River Mosel, had to be cancelled due to the pandemic.

Thanks to Bracknell Twinning Chair, Mary Temperton, and her counterpart in Leverkusen, this year’s return visit to Leverkusen was able to take place and included a visit to the chemical Bayer company Colonies Museum in Leverkusen town centre; a visit to the Waldfrieden Sculpture Park set in Wuppertal woodland and opened in 2008 by British sculptor, Tony Cragg; a ride on the unique ‘hanging’ monorail along the River Wupper; and an evening at the Annual Leverkusen Beer Festival on the banks of the River Wupper to sample local, national and international beers and culinary dishes, including the traditional German Bratwurst!

An inter-town friendship and partnership visit would not be complete without a more formal Reception at the Leverkusen City Hall, attended by both Bracknell Town Mayor and Leverkusen Lord Mayor, where guests from Bracknell were warmly welcomed. Lord Mayor Uwe Richrath acknowledged that next year Bracknell and Leverkusen will be celebrating 50 years of twinning, and he vowed to attend the Leverkusen return visit to Bracknell then.

‘It was wonderful and reassuring to see ‘old friends’ again and make new friends in Leverkusen, a relatively new town, with which Bracknell shares much in common. Even the Lord Mayor of Leverkusen, Uwe Richrath, seems like an ‘old friend’, and it was a pleasure and honour to meet him again after four years’ absence!’ (Maggie Stock, member of the Bracknell Twinning Committee).