Hobsons Bay International Friendship Association

Sister Cities with the City of Anjo, Japan 安城市 – Since 1988

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2018 Hobsons Bay Delegation

HBIFA Report to HBCC :-

Hobsons Bay Delegation to Anjo, Japan.

Thirty Years ago the Altona Council signed a sister city agreement with the City of Anjo. To acknowledge this significant event, in April 2018, a delegation of 16 Hobsons Bay citizens travelled to Anjo for a six day visit.   Leading the delegation was Mayor Cr Angela Altair, with Bill Millard, Council Director for Strategic Planning,  Joy Martin President of the Hobsons Bay International Friendship Association, Vice President John Whittington, Treasurer  Janet Nicholls, Japanese  Writing Coordinator, Sue Gauci, Assistant Secretary Glenda Curtis, past chaperone Kaylene Stiles, past Australian Sister City Association Secretary,  Margaret Evans,  and HBIFA  members Lyn and Graeme Smith,  Rhonda and Paul Taig, Jim Nicholls, Paul Gauci, Darren Stiles, Bob Martin along with Denise Millard. The group was warmly welcomed at the airport by members of the Anjo International Association and the Anjo City Council.

The delegates were taken on guided tours of factories in Aichi Prefecture. A factory producing many products using locally farmed squid, the Nakano Saki Brewery in Handa, founded in 1844 built along a canal and has been used for sake brewing for 200 years. Close by, the delegates were greatly impressed by the largest vinegar factory in Japan, Mizkan, an interactive museum, which presented an excellent understanding of the development of their products.  The Toyota Plant was of great interest due to the Toyota production established in Altona in 1978, which has since ceased manufacturing. This highly automated factory produces 370,000 vehicles a year.  After a visit to the Toyota Museum the group had a five course meal in the Toyota Stadium.

The Anjo City Council and Anjo International Association provided an outstanding cultural feast where the Hobsons Bay delegates participated in a range of Japanese cultural activities; wearing kimonos while learning the traditional Sakura fan dance, enjoying an onsen, listening to traditional Japanese musical instruments, experiencing a school lunch with Anjo-minami junior high students, participating in  tea ceremonies both “Sencha “ at the Ishikawa Jozan (renowned sixteenth century samurai, and later scholar and  poet), designed gardens and  tea house and “Matcha” at the Anjo community centre and making lanterns at Denpark, a botanical park.

Anjo City Council is very proud of the services provided to their community. During the stay a comprehensive tour took in, recycling, environmental protection and beautification facilities, sporting, welfare, museums, cultural and community centres.

The Anjo Mayoral Reception was held at Denpark, as Anjo has been known as the Denmark of Japan. The Hobsons Bay group gave a cultural presentation of “We are Australian” with an audio/visual backdrop and Japanese translation provided.  The Mayor Angela Altair presented Mayor Gaku Kamiya with a sunrise photo of Williamstown; HBIFA President, Joy Martin presented the citizens of Anjo with the Hobsons Bay logo carved by a local artisan of Australian woods.  At Koto, a tearoom at the Anjo Historical Museum, many delegates were reunited with past friends from Anjo; some they had hosted or had home stayed through the annual student exchange program or the Anjo triennial citizens delegations. Many of these firm relationships were formed decades ago.

Anjo proclaimed itself an “Environmentally and Globally –Friendly City”  and has two other Sister City Friendships, with Huntington Beach, USA, 1982 and Kolding, Denmark, 2009. This October on the actual 30th Anniversary of the signing of the  Sister City  Agreement the HBCC and HBIFA have the pleasure of returning the hospitality and warm welcome we received from out sister city with the visit of  the Anjo Mayor,  President of the AIA and Anjo citizens. The aim to build goodwill between the citizens of Anjo and Hobsons Bay is not taken lightly.

Joy Martin


 Hobsons Bay International Friendship Association 


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