Celebrating 70 years of Portsmouth's twinning with Duisburg

September 2020 marks 70 years since the signing of the twinning agreement between Portsmouth and Duisburg in Germany.

The partnership was announced in 1950 and is the second oldest Anglo-German twinning, which aimed to unite Germany with Europe after the war.

More than 70,000 people have been involved with the partnership so far. The cities have exchanged music, art and sport, and many groups have visited the cities over the years.

"The relationship with Duisburg continues to provide Portsmouth with a huge sense of friendship and pride, new experiences for our residents and visitors, and a rich and vibrant culture inspired by our friends in Germany. We are immensely proud of our twinning with Duisburg and look forward to continuing our relationship for many more years to come."
Cllr Rob Wood, Lord Mayor of Portsmouth

Since 1950, the twinning has resulted in:

  • 70,000 taking part in the exchange
  • 65 Lord Mayors being involved
  • Over 140 official visits and over 500 personal trips
  • Commemorative friendship sculptures in both cities
  • The relationship surpassing three generations
  • Many more activities and memories

Duisburg by night


Online exhibition

To celebrate the anniversary with Duisburg, Portsmouth City Council has shared an online photography exhibition showcasing 70 years of friendship between the two cities.

From the very beginning of the partnership in the 1950s (where school children went abroad for the first time), to the 1970s (where many people were involved and several visits took place each year), to more recent times (when the link continues to form new friendships), the twinning has impacted so many people.

Take a look through the exhibition on the Portsmouth City Council website.


Guided walk

Anyone wanting to explore some of the areas around Portsmouth that have been most involved in the twinning can take a specially themed walk around the city. Follow this Virtual Guided Tour from Geotourist to discover some city highlights, and learn the role they played in the twinning with Duisburg.


Future plans

To continue celebrations later in the year, Portsmouth City Council will plant a tree dedicated to the 70th anniversary and the German symbol of peace, Forget-Me-Not flowers. 


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