The mayor of St Albans, Cllr Mohammad Iqbal Zia, visited Nevers during March, the city in France with which St Albans is twinned, in a bid to promote culture, trade and tourism links.
Cllr Zia attended the annual Nevers trade fair after he was invited to visit the French city by its Mayor, Denis Thuriot.
During an official welcoming ceremony, the two Mayors temporarily exchanged symbols of their mayoralty to highlight the close ties between the two cities.
The mayor was then given a tour of the city, including visits to Nevers cathedral, theatre, an earthenware shop and the Bibracte archaeological site and museum.
He also took in a local rugby game and attended a memorial service to remember people who had died in the Algerian war.
Links between the two cathedral cities were first established in 1974, when Nevers became the first city to be twinned with St Albans.
Every other year local group the Friends of Nevers arrange twinning visits to the French cathedral city when they stay with local families and visit historical attractions. In the intervening year, L’Amicale de Nevers members visit St Albans.
Cllr Zia said: “The event provided a great opportunity to promote St Albans as a fantastic place to visit with a wealth of heritage and cultural attractions. I spoke with exhibitors, highlighting St Albans’ many visitor attractions as well as the District’s economic strengths.
“We exchanged ideas about how to promote our two cities. In addition, we learned about new initiatives and projects being developed in our respective cities.”