The History of Twinning



Have you ever wondered what those road signs mean as you approach Bognor Regis - the ones that say ‘Welcome to Bognor Regis, twinned with Saint Maur des Fossés, Weil am Rhein and Trebbin’?


Town Twinning was set up after the Second World War to encourage friendly contact between Britain and countries in Europe at a local level. Bognor Regis has been officially partnered with Saint Maur des Fossés, an elegant town on the river Marne, near Paris, and even nearer to Disneyland Europe, since 1980. In 1987 we linked with the town of Weil am Rhein, situated in the southwest corner of Germany, where Switzerland, France and Germany join, and in 1994 we officially twinned with Trebbin, a small town south of Berlin, in the former German Democratic Republic.


For more information on any of our Twinning Towns, please click the corresponding logos.

St Maur-des-fosses logo

St Maur-des-Fossés

Saint-Maur-des-Fossés, situated approximately 9 miles south-east of Paris, was the first town to form links with Bognor Regis. Established in 1980, the link continues to be very successful. Saint-Maur now boasts a small area of land named "Square Bognor Regis", in addition to a "Promenade des Anglais" along the River Marne. In return, Bognor Regis has a "Place St. Maur des Fossés" to remind us of our French twin town.
Weil am Rhein logo

Weil am Rhein

Bognor's initial twinning with Germany took place in 1987 with the south-western town of Weil am Rhein. The town is situated on the Rhine in the so-called "Dreilandereck" ("three country corner") where the Rhine forms the border between Germany, France and Switzerland. The German town sought twinning links with an English seaside resort and the excellent climate, and pleasant coastline, of Bognor Regis is very popular with German visitors.
Trebbin logo


Weil am Rhein already had twinning links with the town of Trebbin in the former East Germany, so it seemed a natural development for Bognor Regis to adopt this link as well. In 1996 official twinning charters were signed with Trebbin which is situated approximately 16 miles south of Berlin. The German town has seen major changes since re-unification in 1990.

Bognor Regis Twinning Association


These relationships are not just something written on a sign or filed in official documents at the Town Hall; they are true bonds of friendship stretching across the Channel encouraging an understanding of each other’s culture and history. Bognor Regis Twinning Association, a small but active voluntary organisation, welcomes about 50 visitors from our two German twin towns every 3 years. By supporting with a grant this year, Bognor Regis Town Council made it possible for the Twinning Association to continue their student programme, whereby free places are offered on these trips to two or three young people. An affiliated group runs an exchange to our French twin town every two years, with a return visit in the interim year. From time to time the Twinning Association also runs sporting, rambling and musical exchanges.


The Twinning Association hold social events to not only raise much-needed funds, but also provide great opportunities for members to meet together and have a good time. The most successful annual event is the Beaujolais Bistro, a French style luncheon when the season’s Beaujolais Nouveau is sampled along with a tasty meal.

If you want to get involved in twinning links, or would just like to be a social member, the Twinning Association would love to hear from you. Please look at their website, for further details of what they do, and who to contact for membership information.


Twinning offers many opportunities: it promotes friendship between people in the home town and twin towns as well as the chance to visit one or more of the twin towns. Exchanges between the French twin town of Saint-Maur and Bognor Regis take place annually, with visits alternating between towns. Visitors from the German towns come to Bognor Regis every third year, while Bognor Regis members visit either Weil am Rhein or Trebbin in the two intervening years, where they are joined by friends from Trebbin in Weil am Rhein or vice-versa. 


Throughout the year a number of Twinning Association social events take place in, and around, Bognor Regis including Quiz Nights, Boules Competition, Skittles Evening and Beaujolais Bistro. On the second Monday of most months a Foreign Film Evening is held at the Picturedrome Cinema in Bognor Regis.

Bognor Regis Twinning Association  is an independent, self-funding, organisation run by a committee of volunteers elected each year at the Annual General Meeting open to Members and the public. Membership fees for 2018 are £8.00 for an individual or £15.00 for a couple.
For further information about the Association, email