We were very sorry to wave goodbye to the members of the Münsterchor of St Aegidien in Brunswick on Sunday, 22nd October. They had spent a week in Bath, visiting some of our local tourist attractions, and giving a recital in the Abbey, as well as taking part in services in Salisbury and Wells Cathedrals and in St John’s the Evangelist in Bath. Many members of the public were able to enjoy their fine singing, and the playing of their organist, who had to master four different instruments in a very short time.
At a reception on 16th October, they were officially welcomed to Bath by the Mayor, Cllr Dine Romero, who had had the pleasure of hearing the choir sing at the opening of the Bath Garten in Brunswick in August.
Our thanks to all our friends and members who made this visit a notable success.
Congratulations to Dennis Schroeder, the star of the German basketball team which recently won the world championship. Dennis comes from Brunswick and was a pupil at the IGS Franzsches Feld. Although now living abroad, he came to Brunswick for his 30th birthday and signed the Golden Book of the city.
The Bath Garden in Brunswick was officially opened by the Lord Mayor of Brunswick, Dr Thorsten Kornblum on 21st August. The Garden is situated in a beautiful central park, with features named for Brunswick’s other twin and friendship cities. Members of BBTA were pleased to be part of a large group witnessing this celebration of our long-standing friendship, and to be entertained by the Münsterchor of St Aegidien, which will be visiting Bath in October.
At the end of July, a group of BBTA members made their way to Cardiff to meet friends from the Cardiff-Stuttgart Association, whom we had originally met online, and then in person in Bath last year. It was also a good excuse to enjoy the delights of Wally’s Viennese Café and Delicatessen, a well known Cardiff attraction. We can recommend the Apfelstrudel!
On our recent visit to Brunswick committee members were delighted to meet other participants of the DEG book group in person. Our online activities resumed on 29th June with a discussion of “Lessons in Chemistry” by Bonnie Garmus, but we hope to meet again in person in Brunswick on 24th August, when the chosen book will be “Two steps forward” by Graeme Simsion.
Meanwhile back in Bath, the German Society hosted a discussion of Brigitte Reimann’s “Die Geschwister” on 22nd June. This is an annual German language event, and suggestions for 2024 would be welcome.
At the AGM on 15th June, the current members of the committee were re-elected unopposed. The committee is now planning activities for July and August – and beyond!
The next meeting of BBTA will be our AGM on Thursday, 15th June, at 14.30 in the Mayor’s Parlour. Members and guests are welcome to join us.
Visitors to the website will know that a visit of bridge players to Brunswick has been planned for a long time. We finally made it there at the beginning of June, and the photo shows bridge players from Bath and Brunswick, together with members of the DEG attending a reception in Schloss Richmond hosted by Frau Bürgermeisterin Antonelli. The reception was later attended by a group of young students of German from a High School in Omaha, Nebraska. This town is one of Brunswick’s nine twin and sister cities, and its representatives were signing an official agreement on mutual co-operation and support with the President of the DEG, Paul Kavanagh.
Our visit was a great success, with a full programme of bridge, some sight-seeing and some travelling to towns near Brunswick. We were also able to meet our friends from the online book club, and help with the preparations for Braunschweig International, a festival celebrating all the different national communities living and working in Brunswick. Our thanks go to all involved in the preparations for our visit.
On a beautiful early summer’s day in mid-May a group of members of BBTA and BGS was guided around Prior Park Garden by our members Pat and Bob. This walk had been postponed from March, but was well worth the wait. The Garden was alive with birdsong and we identified many different varieties, including our favourite: the “Zilpzalp” (chiffchaff)! Some of us had to admit to difficulties distinguishing a “Blaumeise” from a “Kohlmeise” (blue tit and great tit) but Pat and Bob were always at hand to explain and help. Not to mention distinguishing a “Saatkrähe” (rook) from a “Rabenkrähe” (crow) – a crow is slightly bigger, usually (but not always) seen alone and has a black beak, a rook is usually (but not always) in a flock and has a light beak. We also glimpsed an “Eichelhäher” (jay) flying through the trees.
We also investigated the flora, admired the views, and discussed the literary associations of the House and Garden. Some of us can be seen on the famous Palladian Bridge, possibly counting the ducklings just below us.
As Coronation fever reaches its peak, members of BBTA continue to enjoy other ways of forging friendly international relationships with our counterparts in Brunswick and among our like-minded compatriots. We are planning many social activities for the coming months, and among these are the walk round Prior Park Garden (which was postponed to 22nd May) and a visit to the Theatre Royal to see BODS performing “Guys and Dolls”. This has been well-reviewed in the local press and we are looking forward to an entertaining show. BODS have previously visited Brunswick to take part in the Kulturnacht, and this year some young musicians from Bath Spa University will be demonstrating their talents at this lively festival on 17th June. A group of Bath Bridge players will also be visiting Brunswick at the end of May to take part in several tournaments, meeting some of the friends who first came to Bath in 2016, and exploring Brunswick and the surrounding area.
Our monthly online book club with members of the DEG continues to be an enjoyable chance to discuss some interesting books and to exchange news. The May session will discuss “Lessons in Chemistry”. The BBTA chair will also be leading a discussion on a newly re-published East German novel for the German Society in June.
Members and friends are always welcome to join us in these activities, or at BBTA meetings – the next one of which is on Thursday 25th May, and will once again be held in the Guildhall. For further details of how to become involved please contact our secretary on: email@example.com