The Hendreds Twinning Group


You can view a report of the 2017 visit to Sarceaux here

The Hendreds are twinned with Sarceaux, a village of similar size, near Argentan in Normandy, France.

Twinning began in 1997 with the official signing of charters. The 10th anniversary was celebrated in Sarceaux in 2007, with a special weekend, including a fireworks display on the Saturday evening. A DVD was prepared and premiered during the weekend; it showed the twinning events over the previous 10 years. The Hendreds special contribution to the weekend was a display of Morris dancing in full costume (following a crash course over the preceding weeks, coached by a member of the Wantage team).

Exchanges have been  between the two communities each year, with 25 to 30 people taking part from each country. All those involved stay  with host families. The exchange normally starts  by travelling overnight on a Friday in early July, to arrive in the host village early on the Saturday morning. There are activities on both Saturday and Sunday, usually with a visit by coach  to an attraction on the Sunday. In the UK these have included London, Hampton Court, Warwick Castle, Longleat, Portsmouth Historic Dockyard  and in France Cherbourg, Giverney Gardens, Bayeux, Caen (Peace Museum, Abaie des Hommes), Falaise and several WWII sites including Arromanches.

One of the regular activities each year is an Aunt Sally challenge, which has been won more times by the French than by the English!

There is a replica of the East Hendred kissing gate (on the path through Snells) in Sarceaux, in memory of their Deputy Mayor (keen twinner) who was killed in a car crash. This was officially opened during the exchange week-end in 2001.

The Twinning Group organises fund raising and social events during the year . Membership of the Group is £6 for a family, and £4 for an individual. Members are also welcome from surrounding communities.

We have members from Ardington, Letcombe Regis, Childrey and Wantage.

There are always special rates for accompanied children travelling to Sarceaux (in 2015 school-age children travelled for a reduced fee).

Sarceaux hosted the 2015 exchange over the week-end of July 3-6th, with 25 (including 7 school-age children) travelling to France, all staying with French families. The visit on the Sunday was to Le Mans (old town, the motor museum and the track). On the return journey the group stopped at the Pegasus bridge with a visit around the museum, and had the opportunity to see the several plaques commemorating the position of the gliders that landed to take the bridge on the eve of D-Day, as well as the café whose owner greeted the soldiers who had landed.

Contact: Margaret Sharp for more information.

Twinning group members in front of the Mairie in Sarceaux

Twinning exchange in 2010, in the grounds of Snells Hall. The Normandy flag was presented to the Hendreds group by Sarceaux  that year