A MUSIC exchange programme between Henley and its German twin town Leichlingen could end due to lack of
A MUSIC exchange programme between Henley and its German twin town Leichlingen could end due to lack of funds.
Patrick Fleming, who chairs the Henley-Leichlingen Twinning Association, told the town council’s finance strategy and management committee that the group had no money left.
He said: “Traditionally, we have had to spend between £4,000 and £5,000 on our music workshop on alternate years and we have got to the point where we have run out of money.
“We do it not just for the music but also the exchange. German kids come over here and spend a couple of days with English kids. It is something we already do with football and swimming.”
Mr Fleming said that next year there would be no cost as Leichlingen was hosting Henley musicians but he was concerned about the return visit the following year.
“What we would like to do is ensure this programme remains and keep this running for 2017 but we can’t afford to leave a cliffhanger,” he said.
The group used to receive grants from the European Union but this was now “impossible”.
Mr Fleming said the Henley Educational Trust had provide grants in the past and he hoped the council would give £1,500 to £2,000, although the group would continue fund-raising.
Will Hamilton, who chairs the committee, suggested submitting a grant application.
Councillor Ian Reissmann said: “I have been involved in the Leichlingen twinning and it is a great organisation, especially when the young people are involved.”
The music exchanges usually take place in late July or early August and involve about 30 children.
The Henley-Leichlingen Twinning Association was founded in 1979 with the aim of fostering friendship between people from Henley and those of Leichlingen, which lies on the River Wupper in the Rhineland.