The mayor of St Albans visited a carnival in the Italian town of Fano in a bid to "strengthen ties" as part of a twinning project.

Mayor Anthony Rowlands and Mayoress Annie Stevenson travelled to Fano to take part in Italy's oldest carnival - which dates back to 1347 - meet with the town's officials and interact with residents.

The visit included a festive exchange of gifts with Fano's Mayor, Massimo Seri.

Mayor Rowlands said: "I am delighted to have visited Fano during my year in office to strengthen the ties between our two towns.

"These bonds now go back more than a quarter of a century and hopefully will continue for many years to come.

"It is important that we maintain close links with the people and cultures of other nations and town twinning is a good way of doing that."

St Albans has been twinned with Fano, since 1998, and both towns are renowned for their Roman ruins.


Mayor Rowlands gifted Mayor Seri a recently revised book on the history of St Albans, written by Professor Mark Freeman.

Community groups - including the charity Friends Without Borders - were also present at the reception.

The mayor's trip did not incur any costs for the district council.