On 18th June 1992 Bridgwater became the first British town to twin with a Czech town after the Velvet Revolution of 1989. Uherske Hradiste, a small town in Moravia, near the Slovak border was our target, and followed a person to person link up between newly elected Bridgwater councillor Brian Smedley and Czech business man Antonin Machala, now the owner of the important Altech company which has been the backbone of all our link projects.
Uherske Hradiste is a special town in the Czech Republic. Famous for its folk costume, music and dancing plus the home of the 3 battles – wine, beer and slivovice -it’s a character set apart. Home to an annual summer film festival, an annual wine and ancient monuments festival and a series of local village based ‘hodys’ (small folk festivals) it’s a rural idyll. Several of our original Bridgwater pioneers from the early 1990s even chose to settle there.
But Bridgwater’s interest in all things Czech saw other towns come forward to make links and it’s a fact that we have links literally all o er the country.
The next big link we have is Ceske Budejovice in South Bohemia. Home of Budvar beer and within easy distance of the Sumava forest, the lake Lipno and the Austrian border.
And of course we have many links with the capital Prague. Especially the number 6 District, at one time every school there was twinned with a Sedgemoor school and visited here regularly.