Conwy's bond with Japan grows

FOLLOWING a week in Japan where Conwy’s mayor was treated as a “minor celebrity”, the town will have the chance to repay the favour this week.

On Thursday, November 7 a delegation from Himeji will join their new mayor, Hideyasu Kiyomoto, on his first visit to Conwy following the finalisation of the twinning of both towns' UNESCO World Heritage Site castles.

Last week, a civic party including Conwy mayor cllr Goronwy Edwards visited the Japanese town the signing of a Co-operation Agreement.

Former Conwy mayor cllr Bill Chapman, who was part of the civic party in Japan, said: “Things went extraordinarily well here in Japan. Members of the Conwy delegation were been greeted as minor celebrities by local people, at a friendship festival and at the official signing ceremony.

"The mayor was even mobbed by local schoolchildren at one point.”

The Conwy reception will feature a civic reception at the Guild Hall as well as a ceremonial 'Sakura' cherry tree planting at the Conwy Tourist Information Centre, which will serve as a symbol of growing relations between the two towns.

The Japanese visitors will visit Ysgol Aberconwy, enjoy a choral presentation in St Mary’s Church led by former Aberconwy teacher Chris Roberts and being welcomed by pupils from Porth Y Felin School at the reception.

The delegation visited Llandudno Junction's Gwinllan Vineyard and the MOSTYN Gallery in Llandudno, and will also visit other locations in Conwy such as the Smallest house of Great Britain and the Knight Shop.

Cllr Chapman added: "While the twinning is between the castles, I welcome increased friendship between individuals and organisations in both Himeji and Conwy in the future."