Twinning FAQs

To help explain a little more about our twinning project, we have put together a list of Frequently Asked Questions and answers. If, after reading through our questions, you would like to find out more, please use our Contact page.

Why Montigny in Normandy?

Like most twinnings, the choice of village is linked to personal contact. In our situation it goes back over 40 years with a friendship formed during a school exchange. The idea took root and has progressed from there.

Is the Parish Council involved?

No. The Foxton Twinning Association is a self-funded organisation in exactly the same way as other village associations. People who want to be involved in twinning activities join in and contribute as they do, say, in a village sports club. Because we are “representing” the village we keep the Parish Council informed as a courtesy. We fund-raise to generate money to organise, publicise and stage future events.

What does the Twinning Association do?

There are Twinning Associations in both Foxton and Montigny. We work together to find common village interests, opportunities and cultural links and to partner similar people in both villages who are willing to host exchanges with each other. This potential list then forms the basis for exchange visits and activities.

Do I need to speak French?

Definitely not! There are people in Montigny who may speak English fluently or moderately or not at all. Similarly there are people in Foxton who may speak French fluently or moderately or not at all. Part of the organisational work is to match people or families with each other so that there is no language problem.

How often do exchange visits take place? 

Each village hosts a village-wide exchange every other year. We started in Montigny in Autumn 2017 and in Foxton in Spring 2018. We agree a mutually convenient weekend when the visit will take place, for example to coincide with specific events in Rouen, Cambridge or the village neighbourhoods.

Who organises and pays for the exchange trips? 

The Twinning Committee provide the participating families with the contact details of the family who will be hosting them in the respective villages. Then, individuals make contact with each other and organise and fund their own travel. As guests in Montigny your host family will look after you and their Association will cover any costs for activities during the visit. If you wish to, when they come over here, you reciprocate.

When the French group visit Foxton, the Foxton Association will meet the costs of their activities. There is nothing to stop you organising other visits at other times if you both want to. It’s entirely down to you. So although the Twinning Associations make the contacts for you in the first instance, from our research with other Twinning Groups these frequently form the basis of life-long friendships and visits completely separate from any subsequent, yearly twinning events.

What’s the best way to get to Montigny?

Ryanair operate two flights per week (Monday and Friday) from Stansted to Deauville (about 2 hours from Montigny) from April to October. Alternatively you can go by Eurostar via Paris to Rouen. There is also the car ferry or tunnel from Dover to Calais with an easy two and a half hour drive to Montigny or the car ferry from Newhaven to Dieppe.

Host families will happily meet you in Rouen or Deauville and bring you to Montigny.

How can I be involved if I don’t want to host an exchange visitor?

It is definitely possible to visit Montigny and stay with a French family but not host anyone when they return to Foxton. We may organise local walks, evening events and sight-seeing trips during the weekend of any scheduled visits here, and these are open to anyone. There are opportunities to get involved in a low-key way if you would like to, for example attending social events organised by the Association.

Can other village organisations get involved?

Yes. We would welcome any other organisations that would like to make links with counterpart organisations in Montigny, and would be happy to put you in touch with the relevant people there. Foxton and Montigny primary schools have already created a link, and many of the children are writing to penfriends. It would be great to organise separate weekends at different times of the year for a range of different interests, e.g. footballers, cyclists, singers etc. Please contact us if you have any ideas for future links within a village organisation you are part of.

How would I know if joining the Foxton-Montigny Twinning Association is for me?

If you are a friendly type, a bit outgoing, up for a some fun and a challenge, if you like meeting people, making new friends and have an interest in French culture, food, heritage and history and you are similarly proud of your own, then the Foxton-Montigny Twinning Association sounds like it has a lot to offer you.

Download as PDF: Twinning FAQs