Hyndburn Host civic reception ahead of Ukrainian Town Twinning

On Monday 21 August, Haworth Art Gallery hosted a civic reception for Professor Mykhailo Oros, a representative visiting Hyndburn from Khust Council, located in West Ukraine.

The formal visit follows the announcement of Hyndburn’s plans to twin towns with Khust to offer solidarity during the war and establish relationships for the future.

Hyndburn’s leaders, Council Officers, community representatives from the charity sector and NHS, plus members of the local Hyndburn Ukrainian community were invited to the event for a morning of presentations and celebration.

Welcomed by Deputy Mayor, Cllr Joyce Plummer, guests enjoyed presentations on the history and culture of Khust, a tourist resort with a rich heritage in basket weaving and food production, including honey. This was followed by gift giving between Hyndburn Council and Khust Council.

Leader, Cllr Marlene Haworth was presented with gifts including a Ukrainian Flag and Cllr Haworth offered gifts to Khust, including an Accrington Stanley Shirt. A traditional Ukrainian song was heard, with the English translation available for all to read, and guests enjoyed the art gallery, views and gardens.

Cllr Marlene Haworth, Leader of Hyndburn Council, said:

“It was our pleasure to host Professor Oros and I hope he has enjoyed his visit this week to Hyndburn and Lancashire. The local community proposed this town twinning initiative, and I am very proud to be working alongside the council to make this happen.

 “Many Hyndburn people have opened their homes to Ukrainian families who have fled the war and our community is now their home. Right now this town twinning is our message of solidarity in difficult times, in the future it will be a way for businesses and industry to make connections, to stimulate tourism and help both of our communities grow and prosper.”

Professor Oros gave his thanks to Hyndburn for the hospitality, not just for his visit, but for the warm welcome Ukrainians have received since the war started.

A formal invite was given to Cllr Haworth to visit Khust in the coming months and this was accepted.

“I am incredibly proud to be representing Hyndburn in an upcoming visit to Khust and would like to extend my gratitude to everyone involved in the Homes for Ukraine scheme, supporting people who are here building new lives.

“Special thank you goes to Dr Valeriy Hrymchak, who initiated the town twinning idea and has offered translation services to all sides, to Angela Higson, a Hyndburn resident who has supported Ukrainian arrivals to Hyndburn by going above and beyond and to Maundy Relief, who have become a safe space and hub for the local Ukrainian community.”