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Visit from Sandy to Skarszewy July 2007

Our Polish Link is operating well although we are still very much subject to the political climate in Skarszewy and there is s definite need on our side to make the arrangments wth our Polish partner more sustainable. We ran summer schools in both Skarszewy & Starogard for the 10th year and although numbers of participating sixth formers from Stratton were lower than usual (14), what they lacked in quantity they more than ;made up for in quality and the feedback was the best yet. This really has proved to be a very worthwhile venture and hugely appreciated on the Polish side. The summer schools ran for a fortnight in early July and overlapped with the community visit, which involved 18 people from this end in all.

A sizeable contingent from the Kings Arms Angling Club were entertained royally by members of the Skarszewy Angling Club. Both fishing mathes were lost emphatically by no one really noticed as the food, beer and vodka appeared in large quantities. The other half of the group enjoyed a very varied programme which included a half-day in Gdansk, amber panning in the Baltic and a four mile march across a Baltic beach, a pony and trap ride and visits to a railway museum and concentration camp.

There were two eve4nng receptions including an outdoor event featuring a folk-group from Belarus, one of whose members was the son of Poppy & Roger Cope, members of our contingent. Everyone seemed to have a brilliant time and the event was generously funded by Skarszewy Council. Travelling to Poland has now become very easy with the advent of budget airlines and no more expensive than the old coach journey which took 36 hours.

Our friends from Skarszewy are due to visit us fro the 10th to 15th July 2008 with a party of about twenty. Kings Arms members will hopefully look after the fishermen and are already planning their activities. There will also be a small table-tennis team and small group of girl singers and dancers. we hope the Upper School will be able to help with staging a concert and hospitality if possible.

This was extracted from the Chairmans Report at the AGM January 2008.