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In 1981, Dollar in Clackmannanshire, Scotland  became twinned with La Ville aux Dames, a small town just outside Tours in the Loire Valley of France. The enduring links between our two towns are just as relevant today as they were when the charter was first signed. Each year an exchange takes place between our two communities, with Dollar inhabitants enjoying  a warm welcome in La Ville aux Dames every alternate year since 1982. The Touraine area has a lot to recommend itself to visitors. It is famous for its many grand chateaux along the Loire, some of which have strong links with former rulers of Scotland. The people of La Ville aux Dames are proud of their links with Scotland and Mary Queen of Scots in particular. Indeed, one of the streets of La Ville aux Dames is named after her. The climate and geology make it ideal for the cultivation of vines and this area has often been referred to as the "Garden of France". As a result, food and wine tasting are very important pastimes in the area. Tours itself is an important city with an enchanting old quarter as well as a thriving modern economy, with modern shops side by side with interesting historical buildings.
The name La Ville aux Dames harks back several centuries to a time when an abbey with nuns occupied one of the earliest sites in the area. It was surrounded by agricultural land where the production of milk was important for the nearby town of Tours. The inhabitants of this rural area were also known as the "Caillons" because the milk they carried had often turned sour by the time they got to their destinations, especially in summer. To mark these important legacies, the streets of La Ville aux Dames are all named after famous, or in some cases infamous, ladies and a sponsored walk called the "Marche des Caillons" is held each year in November to raise funds for medical research. Today, inhabitants of La Ville aux Dames call themselves "Gynepolitains" from the ancient Greek words "gune" for woman and "polis" for town. There are many differences between the towns but the one thing we all have in common is a shared desire to maintain and develop the links created in 1981.

 


Dollar in Winter
 
Dollar, overlooked by Castle Campbell
 
Cherry Trees on the Burnside, Dollar

 
 
 Dollar
 
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 Aerial view of part of La Ville aux Dames
 

 The Mairie, La Ville aux Dames

 Roundabout, decorated for Scottish Visitors in La Ville aux Dames

 
 
La Ville aux Dames
 
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