Tiverton an der Exe

Tiverton is located around 25 kilometers north of the city of Exeter in the county of Devon and has a population of around 17,000. Contacts with Hofheim have existed since 1975, an official partnership since 1980.

At the two fords of the rivers Exe and Lowman, a small settlement was established in Celtic times, continued under the Roman Empire, later called "Twy-Ford-Town" (Tiverton) = "Two-Ford-Town". In 680 AD, Winfrith was born in Crediton (near Tiverton), who brought Christianity to the Germanic tribes under the name "Boniface". The first documented mention of Tiverton dates back to 899 AD. The ruins of a castle, built around 1105, and St. Peter's Church from the 14th century with the Romanesque door from 1073 are among the oldest architectural witnesses. From the 16th century onwards, the numerous donations made by wealthy cloth merchants enabled the development of charitable buildings (e.g. Blundell's School, poorhouse settlement).

In 1615, Tiverton became a "borough", i.e. a town with parliamentary representation. Today it is a district town, a school town and the center of the cattle markets.

Alongside agriculture, the textile industry is still the largest employer. Since the beginning of the partnership, there have been numerous and cordial contacts between associations in Hofheim and Tiverton, but also between individual families, which are intensively cultivated and promoted. Mutual visits are a matter of course.

Further information can be found on the homepage of the Hofheim Town Twinning Association (FHS):


Tiverton - Citizen meetings

People from Hofheim tell their stories about their experiences in Tiverton.

For 40 citizens, it was a great pleasure to finally see each other again in Tiverton. After all, it had been four years since their last meeting due to coronavirus. The welcome on arrival on Thursday evening, July 13, 2023, was all the more warm. For many, it was a reunion with long-standing friends, for others the start of new friendships. The program prepared by the Twinning Association for the following five days gave us the opportunity to get to know Tiverton and the very attractive surroundings, but also to exchange ideas with our hosts.

At the reception hosted by Mayor Wally Burke in the town hall, Mayor Christian Vogt expressed his thanks for the invitation on behalf of the town of Hofheim.

First Councillor Wolfgang Exner was completely surprised when Wally Burke made him an honorary citizen of the town of Tiverton. According to the certificate presented to him, he can now call himself "The Honorary Citizen of the Town of Tiverton", the highest honor the town can bestow. Exner received congratulations from Councillor Bernhard Köppler and Councillor for Town Twinning Matthias Hees, who had also traveled with him. Our former mayor Gisela Stang congratulated him with the words "Welcome to the club". She also received the 2019 award for her many years of commitment to the partnership between Tiverton and Hofheim.

The Tiverton Twinning Association had put together an extensive program of activities for the visitors from Hofheim, most of whom were staying in private accommodation. There was a boat trip on the Exe estuary with cream tea, a tour of faithfully restored carriages, a demonstration of traditional Morris dancing and a visit to a farm, to name but a few of the activities. In addition, there were impressions and experiences of Tiverton and the charming landscape of the county of Devon, which the visitors were able to take away with them. Devon is the only county in England that has two completely separate coastlines. Both the north and south coasts are part of the British Heritage Coast. The two national parks Exmoor and Dartmoor are famous.

The food was also well catered for and there was plenty of opportunity to chat with the hosts. At the formal farewell dinner at Tiverton Golf Club with a view of the impressive golf course, Ingrid Bender, Chairwoman of the Hofheim Town Twinning Association, and Ursula Hees, the Tiverton representative, thanked the visitors in their joint speech for the excellent organization and the great hospitality they had experienced during their five-day stay.

The town twinning between Tiverton and Hofheim has now been in existence for 43 years. Regular meetings between citizens will continue to take place in the future. It is a particular concern of both towns to involve young people in the town twinning. Tiverton has been invited to Hofheim for the coming year.

This year, 46 people from Hofheim flew to Tiverton or drove there in their own cars. A varied program awaited all guests, including a trip on a historic steam train from Bishop's Lydeard to Minehead on the Bristol Channel, a coach trip through Exmoor National Park and a visit to Buckfast Abbey and the abbey gardens.

Driving along the coast through Exmoor National Park, all travelers could admire the beauty of nature and the magnificent landscape.

The new mayor, Mr. Colin Slade, officially and solemnly welcomed all guests and host families in Tiverton Town Hall. In her speech, our mayor Gisela Stang spoke about the long-standing connection between the two towns and emphasized the importance of these civic encounters.

On Saturday evening, there was a tasty barbecue on the lawn and then dancing together (English folk and square dancing). First the "caller" explained the dance figures and step sequences and then all the dancers tried to put this into practice to live music.

At the end of the visit there was the traditional farewell dinner. The Tiverton representative, Ms. Hees, thanked everyone for the varied program and for looking after the guests and invited the members of the Tiverton Twinning Association and all "Tivertonians" on behalf of the Förderkreis to officially celebrate the 40th anniversary together in Hofheim next year. The days in Tiverton will remain unforgettable.


Dancing together (English Folk and Square Dance) after the barbecue on Saturday evening was one of the many experiences during the visit to Hofheim's twin town Tiverton in the southwest of England. The "caller" explained the dance figures and step sequences to the dancers, who then called them out to live music: "Pass Thru", "Do Sa Do", "Swing the corner", "Back to back", "Promenade", "Turn left, turn right", "Forward and back", "Go moving around", "Swing your partner" ...... could be heard late into the night. Many long-standing friendships were refreshed, but new acquaintances and friendships were also made that evening and during the five-day stay. The Tiverton Twinning Association had prepared a varied program for its 46 German guests.

The trip on a historic steam train from Bishop's Lydeard to Minehead on the Bristol Channel and then by coach through Exmoor National Park impressed the Hofheimers with the beauty of the nature and landscape of the county of Devon in south-west England. A visit to Buckfast Abbey allowed the group to immerse themselves in the history of England. The large monastery garden with its splendid flowers also invited visitors to linger. Guests and hosts traveled back to Tiverton along the coast in 2 buses in glorious sunshine, which spoiled everyone and put them in a good mood throughout their stay.

The Mayor of Tiverton, Colin Slade, welcomed the citizens of Hofheim in the town hall at the beginning of the visit. In her response, Hofheim Mayor Gisela Stang referred to the long-standing connection between the two cities and emphasized the importance of these civic encounters, especially in the current times. "Regardless of what happens in the EU, we will continue to cultivate our friendship with our twin town of Tiverton in the future". She is looking forward to seeing many citizens of Tiverton in Hofheim again next year to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the partnership.

The visit ended with the traditional farewell dinner. The Tiverton speaker, Ursula Hees, from the Hofheim Town Twinning Association, thanked the guests for the varied program and the excellent support. On behalf of the Friends and their chairperson Ingrid Bender, she cordially invited the members of the Tiverton Twinning Association and all "Tivertonians" to officially celebrate the 40th anniversary together in Hofheim next year. All participants are looking forward to seeing their "old and new" friends again. This year, the outward and return journey was made by plane via London, which significantly reduced the travel time.

The partnership with the town of Tiverton in the county of Devon in the south-west of England has now been in existence for 38 years. Citizens from both towns have been visiting each other every year for just as long. This year, 33 citizens from Tiverton came to Hofheim, all of whom were accommodated privately; most of them with "their" long-standing hosts, who have already developed a deep and close friendship.

The guests, including the Mayor of Tiverton, were welcomed in the town hall by Mayoress Gisela Stang and the Hofheim Town Twinning Association, which had organized the programme.

This year, over 60 people went on an excursion to the Odenwald, visiting a marzipan confectionery and the castles of Veste Otzberg and Breuberg. The explanations of the marzipan figures produced in the confectionery were followed attentively, as they say a lot about German customs and traditions, such as the giving of lucky pigs as gifts on New Year's Eve. Other figures contributed to the amusement and in the end one or two figures were purchased. Although many castles have been preserved in England, the comparison with the 850-year-old Breuberg Castle was of interest to the guests. The eventful history was impressively explained by the dedicated castle guides in English and German. Today, the castle houses a youth hostel, a registry office, a museum and a small restaurant.

Another item on the program was a visit to Frankfurt Airport with a tour and explanation of the apron in German and English. Both the German hosts and the English guests were impressed by the size and the figures presented.

On Saturday evening, Tiverton and Hofheim celebrated their long-standing friendship with a picnic at the moated castle. The weather was ideal, as the English had put an end to the heat with their arrival and ensured somewhat more pleasant temperatures. On Saturday and Sunday, the hosts were able to undertake individual activities with their guests. There were reports of excursions to Wiesbaden, Frankfurt, Mainz, Marburg, Erbach Castle and much more. Some also used Sunday to take part in the Hofheim jazz hike.

After five days in Hofheim, it was time to say goodbye, with the promise of seeing each other again next year in Tiverton.

35 years of town twinning with Tiverton
The Twinning Committee from Tiverton invited the Förderkreis Hofheimer Städtepartnerschaften e.V. to Tiverton to celebrate 35 years of town twinning. 22 adults and 11 young people took part in this trip. As usual, our friends from Tiverton prepared an interesting program for us, which the young people on the trip reported on:


Thursday, 04.06.2015
We met at 4.45 in the morning in Hofheim behind the town hall. It was pretty hard to get up that early. We had a bit of a traffic jam in Belgium. The crossing on the ferry was nice because we could finally walk around. Afterwards we took a 5-hour bus ride in England and saw the stones of Stonehenge from the road.
From Christian


Friday, 05.06.2015
In the morning we went to the "Willows + Wetland Visitor Center". This was a farm where baskets and other things are made from willow. At the beginning we were given a guided tour and a short movie and then we had time to look around the very interesting museum and to have a drink in the small café at the end. At about 12 o'clock we went to an English pub called "The Piper Inn" to eat. There we had a roast lunch and a small buffet. After lunch we went to Glastonbury Abbey, a monastery of three Saxon kings and King Arthur. We were initially allowed to look around the large grounds on our own and were then given a very interesting and entertaining guided tour. We were picked up by our host families at around seven o'clock.
by Abigail and Dana


Saturday, 06.06.2015
On Saturday, the guests were free to spend the morning as they wished. Many did this with their host families and went to see Exeter, the larger nearby city, together. At 12:00 noon, everyone gathered for a buffet prepared by the hosts. This was opened by a few speeches from the local representatives and then accompanied by a picture presentation of the twin towns. The next item on the program was the social evening, where we ate together, talked and listened to the local choir. Finally, we ended the day with a round of bowling together.
by Levin, Frederik and Tim


Sunday, 07.06.2015
On this day, we all did something different throughout the day. Some went to Sidmouth, others went to Exeter or did something completely different. Many were in Sidmouth because some had been there a year ago during the school trip. We met there in the afternoon and went to the beach. A few visited their old host families. In the evening, at around 7:00, we had dinner at "The Best Western Hotel Tiverton". There we first thanked our host families and presented them with wine and then ate a traditional English meal.
by Valerie and Sophia


Monday, 08.06.2015
On Monday, we had the honor of visiting our host girls and boys at their school, Tiverton High School. It was very interesting to see how the school system in England works, as it is very different to ours in Germany. We had school from 9:00 to 15:20 and then played rounders on the school pitch. "Rounders is like baseball, but with a tiny field in comparison and, as the English proudly said, friendlier rules. It was great fun and you couldn't tell the difference between our nations. What a difference a game can make!

Everyone then spent the rest of the day with their host family. It was a great end to the last day for everyone, and although the English students were not particularly happy about school on Sunday, the day was anything but boring. You could tell just by the fact that we didn't want to go to bed so that the day wouldn't end.
by Lia, Vivienne and Alena


Tuesday, 09.06.2015
Our English hosts also had to get up very early on the return journey. We were on the road from 6 am to 10.30 pm. I ate fish and chips on the ferry and felt like I was in England again.
From Christian


For older reports, please contact the "Town Twinning" team or visit www.fhs-online.de.

Translated with Deepl 26. March 2024