For over 40 years we have established friendship and twinning arrangements with a number of towns abroad. Most of these links date back to the 1960s when limited travel and the legacy of war made it valuable for civic authorities to promote the development of personal links between their citizens.

Places twinned with Hackney

  • Alexandra, South Africa
  • Bridgetown, Barbados
  • Gottingen, Germany
  • Haifa, Israel
  • Krasnopresnenskii, Russia
  • Suresnes, France
  • St Georges, Grenada

The borough has also had informal links with South Africa, Turkey, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. When visits from delegations in partner towns are arranged outside the Council, the Speaker will host a reception. Visits to partner towns are personally funded by the participants at no cost to the Council.

Haifa and Grenada

In recent years the most active and vibrant relationships have been with Haifa in Israel and Grenada in the West Indies due to the twinning and staff swaps that exist between the Homerton Hospital and Rambam Medical Centre in Haifa, and St George's Hospital in Grenada.

Founded in 1968, HAIFA (Hackney Anglo Israel Friendship Association) is the oldest continuously active twinning group in the borough. Its aim is to foster friendship and understanding between the people of Hackney and Haifa in Israel. It's non-political, non-sectarian and multi-faith, committed to equal opportunities, promoting exchanges of people between the two and mutual visits have included sports teams, sixth formers, pensioner groups, war veterans, Town Hall staff and Mayors, Speakers and Councillors. Its major focus since 1995, however, has been the medical teams exchanges between Homerton Hospital and Rambam Hospital in Haifa, northern Israel's largest and world renowned Medical Centre.

For more information, please contact the HAIFA committee through Hackney Synagogue or the Speaker's office.


Schools now make their own links and exchanges with countries that are relevant to their studies, such as Our Lady's and Hangzhou, South West China.

One of Hackney's choral groups, the St John of Jerusalem Festival Chorus, has partnered the Chorale du Conservatoire de Suresnes (the choir of the Suresnes conservatoire) for several years. The choirs have taken part in joint concerts in both Suresnes and Hackney. Twinning activities such as the choirs' exchange visits are not subsidised by the Council.  

More information 

For more information on twinning activities please contact the Speaker's Office.

Page updated: 21/08/2017 10:24:51