What Is Oktoberfest? 

Oktoberfest is the Worlds largest beer and folk festival. It traditionally takes place in Munich, Germany from mid September and lasts 18 days.

 The event has attracted an international following - this year 5.9 million people descended on Munich to attend while other cities across the world hold Oktoberfest style celebrations based on the Munich event.

 During the festival, giant tents capable of holding thousands of revellers are erected and over 6 million litres of beer is drunk. Bavarian music plays in the afternoon and often gives way to more modern pop music in the evening.

 Oktoberfest began in 1810 to celebrate the marriage of Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Sace-Hildburghausen.  The royal newlyweds deemed the party so great that they wanted to repeat it every year and so Oktoberfest has been celebrated in Munich every fall since then.

 This Oktober, experience Oktoberfest take place in Castle Fields, Southsea for the first time!

Twinned Since 1950

Portsmouth's link with Duisburg is the second-oldest Anglo-German twinning.


Portsmouth City Council suggested the twinning as an act of reconciliation, so that the post-war reconstruction would see not only buildings, but also relations between the two nations rebuilt. In 1950 the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress, Sir Denis and Lady Peggy Daley, signed the Golden Book of Duisburg at the city's Town Hall.

Since then, the Lord Mayor has made annual visits to the city and it is estimated that over 70,000 people have participated in exchanges between our cities, which have included groups from colleges, adult education, musicians and artists, members of social and drama clubs, and many sports and social clubs.

The following schools are also known to have an exchange programme with their counterparts in Duisburg: City of Portsmouth Girls School, Portsmouth High School, Priory School, St Edmund's R C School and Springfield School. 

The Duisburg-Portsmouth Friendship Committee

The Committee is made up of five Councillors, three Supporting Officers from different departments of the City Council and volunteer representatives from outside bodies. The Lord Mayor is President of the Committee.

The committee encourages and supports new exchange links, such as exchanges between sports organisations which regularly take place between the two cities. Known exchanges include table tennis, hockey, tennis and youth football, with exchanges for squash, sailing and rowing being established. 

Work Placements

Students from the Albert Einstein Gymnasium have been assisted by Leisure Services and Personnel to find work placements in Portsmouth.

For more information on Duisburg, please visit the Duisburg Tourism website (English translation available) or the Duisburg City site (German).