Twinned with Vinstra,Nord Fron Kommune, Gudsbrandsdalen, Norway.
Although the events leading to the twinning were inspired by recent times, much older links can be found in the Norwegian Viking settlements of the Yorkshire Dales in the 10th and 11th centuries resulting in such place names as Thwaite and Askrigg. Today the two areas are similar in their rural setting where agriculture and light service industries provide employment.
VINSTRA IN NORD FRON
Vinstra is the main town and administrative centre of Nord-Fron district. The area has many similarities to Richmond and the Dales, being mainly composed of deep river valleys cutting through beautiful mountain and moorland scenery.
Much of the area is a National Park and offers many opportunities for hiking and canoeing, white water rafting, horse riding and skiing, both downhill and cross country, the Norwegian national sport. Lillehammer, south of Vinstra, hosted the 1994 Winter Olympics.
The area is renowned for its dairy produce, specially its unique cheese!
Per Gynt, the legendary adventurer and storyteller, immortalised by Ibsen and music by Grieg, was a native of the area. Every year Vinstra has held a Per Gynt Festival of Music and Folk Arts, culminating in an open-air production of the Ibsen play.
THE GREEN HOWARDS CONNECTION
Richmond Norwegian Twinning AssociationThe idea of twinning came about largely as a request from the Norwegians following an incident some 50 years before involving Richmond's local regiment, the Green Howards. In 1940 German forces invaded Norway. Resistance was offered by the Norwegians with assistance from the British. The Gudsbrandsdalen Valley, the heart of the Nord-Fron kommune, saw fierce fighting between Germans and Norwegians, assisted by the Green Howards. Visible reminders of the conflict still exist in the village of Kvam where bullet scored gravestones surround the memorial to the English and Norwegians who lost their lives
The first exploratory visit by a Richmond delegation was in 1987. The official twinning took place the following year when the Norwegian civic party visited Richmond.
The Mayor of Richmond visited Kvam in 1990 to mark the 50th anniversary of the battle between the German army and the combined British/Norwegian forces. The king of Norway was also present.
An exchange takes place every two years with the Richmond guests being invited to Vinstra for the Per Gynt Festival while our Norwegian friends are invited back during the Richmond Meet celebrations.
Richmond Twinning Association holds its annual general meeting usually in November, which is open to all who are interested in twinning and there are regular committee meetings throughout the year.
The Association is always keen to welcome new members and individuals, families or groups and organisations. Ideas for twinning activities are also welcome.
Photo 1 Visit to Vinstra 2013
photo 2 Visit to Richmond 2010
Photo 3 Visit to Glacier Photo 4 War Memorial Vinstra