Thirty years ago, in June
1981, four people from Maybole made the first exploratory
trip to the French town of Crosne, near Paris, to discuss
the possibility of the two towns twinning. David Kiltie,
Alan Murray, Don Raby and Pipe Major Jim Sym were so
impressed that they recommended that the twinning should go
ahead and in 1982 official documents were signed.
Recently, Crosne welcomed 24 visitors to
their annual carnival and once again everyone had a great
time on what was the 30th anniversary of that first trip. It
had been some years since Maybole Pipe Band had made the
trip and this time there were a number of young members
making their first visit.
The group arrived on the Friday evening and
were welcomed by Monsieur Alain Girard, Mayor of Crosne,
councillors, hosts and members of the twinning committee.
Leading the Maybole group were Margaret Davidson, chair of
Maybole Town twinning Association and David Kiltie, chair of
Maybole Community Council. Everyone was quickly made to feel
at home and the females in the group were presented with
halos as the carnival themes was “Angels and Demons”. On the
Saturday morning there was a trip round the sights of Paris
when the highlight was a trip on the River Seine on board a
On their return to Crosne some members met up
with old friends such as former Mayor of Crosne Michel
Berson who is standing for election to the French Senate
later this year. Then it was time for a meal when everyone
was piped in to the restaurant by the pipe band and a gift
from South Ayrshire Provost Winfred Sloan was presented to
Monsieur Girard by Mrs Davidson. After the meal, there was a
torchlight procession through the town and was probably the
first time members of the pipe band had paraded with devil’s
horns on their heads!
Sunday morning was a bit more relaxed with a
short tour of Crosne mainly for first time visitors then it
was time for the carnival parade through the town for
several hours. It was a colourful extravaganza of music and
fun but unfortunately afterwards at the local park the rain
came on for a time although it did not dampen the
magnificent fireworks display.
Piper Tom Fulton came to the rescue after
midnight when all the electrical power cut out. Tom played
solo for about 20minutes and thoroughly deserved the thanks
of the crowd and the organisers. Monday was the final day
and was spent at a picnic before it was time for Auld Lang
Syne from the band the final “au revoirs”. Margaret Davidson
has asked the French twinners for dates for next year’s
official 30th anniversary celebrations in Maybole and she
hopes that many local families will want to get involved.