THE mayor of Neyland has thanked the local community for its support after a successful exchange trip with officials from Sanguinet, in France.

Guests from the French town came to Neyland on Friday (April 11) to sign the Welsh language oath formalising the twinning of the two towns.

They also spent four days in the county, sampling local music, food and culture.

Among the activities enjoyed was a reception at Neyland Yacht Club, with music by Neyland Ladies Choir, visits to St David’s Cathedral and Porthgain, and a boat trip along the river Cleddau with Cpt. Mark Andrews.

Saturday saw Mayor Cllr Maureen Molyneux and Bernard Laine (former Mayor of Sanguinet) sign the twinning agreement, with newly elected Mayor of Sanguinet, Fabiene Laine, welcoming the ‘strengthening of the two towns’ relationships’.

A parade through the town was led by Royal Air Force Cadet Band, 14th. Signals Regiment, British Legion, Neyland Army Cadets, RNLI and local groups with Cllr. Dai Boswell Parade Marshal. A commemorative twinning plaque was unveiled, and floral tributes were then laid at the Cenotaph, followed by the official salute.

During their stay, guests also met with parents, teachers and pupils from Neyland School, played bowls with Neyland Bowls Club, shared a ‘French breakfast’, visited County Hall, and met the locals at a pig roast evening.

Before leaving, visitors were presented with a Welsh slate photo frame with a Celtic cross insert.

Mayor Cllr Molyneux said she had been ‘overwhelmed’ by the support from Neyland Ladies Choir; Zion Chapel; St Clements Church; Cllr Jenny Rayner and friends who held a fundraising afternoon tea; Brian Rothero of Neyland Athletic Club; and the volunteer drivers who “gave their time and good humour”.

She also thanked local sponsors Neyland Co-op, Dale Sailing and Business Solutions, Llanstadwell.

“A great deal of time and planning goes into a visit like this and it has all been worthwhile,” she added. “When I wished ‘bon voyage’ to our friends of Sanguinet they were full of praise for their welcome by the townspeople of Neyland and the town councillors who had joined us during their stay.”