TWO trees – a German Oak and a Scots Pine – will stand side by side in the grounds of a Banffshire castle to mark the 40th anniversary of a special friendship.
The Historic Banffshire Landkreis Kronach twinning association was established in 1973 to foster close links between locals and those from the Bavarian town.
A delegation of seven from Germany arrived in the area to mark the anniversary.
A tree planting ceremony in the grounds of Ballindalloch Castle took place, hosted by the Lord Lieutenant Clare Russell and her husband Oliver.
Moray Council convener Stewart Cree and his equivalent, landrat Oswald Marr, did the spadework, with the trees designed as a lasting symbol of the friendship.
Chairman of the twinning association Elizabeth Copp said it was a memorable day for all nvolved.
“The acorn for the German Oak was picked up in Berlin by one of our members, who then grew it in a pot, and the other tree was a Scots Pine,” she said.
The ceremony was toasted with a dram of Glen Grant, which is used in the famous chocolate liqueurs made in Lauenstein, also in the Landkreis district.
“After the tree planting we had lunch, then the party visited the Moray Council offices,” said Mrs Copp. “The twinning is actually the council twinned with the other council, so they were obviously interested in the difference between how the councils are run.”
As well as the convener, twinning councillor James Allan and KeithCullen member Gary Coull were in attendance.
The visiting party included landrat Marr, as well as four councillors and two members of the Kronach twinning association.
“It was a very happy day,” Mrs Copp said, adding that Mrs Russell and her family went “out of their way” to welcome the guests.