Peterborough councillor organises aid lorries for twinned city in Ukraine

A Peterborough councillor has organised for aid lorries to be sent out to the city’s twinned partner in Ukraine.

By Ben Jones
Tuesday, 19th April 2022, 9:00 am
One of the lorries heading out to Vinnytsia.
One of the lorries heading out to Vinnytsia.

Peterborough has been twinned with Vinnytsia in west-central Ukraine since 1991.

The city lies around 155 miles west of Kyiv and despite not being targeted as badly as cities such as Mariupol and Bucha, has still fallen victim to Russian aggression.

They city’s brand new airport has been destroyed by shelling and the Russian army also fired six cruise missiles, destroying the headquarters of the Ukraine Air Force Command in the city.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The lorry being unloaded in Vinnytsia.

In response to the terrible atrocities being committed in the country, Werrington ward councillor John Fox has been working closely with St Olga Ukrainian church in Woodston to get aid sent out to Vinnytsia to show the city’s support for its Ukrainian counterparts.

He has helped to collect £1500 to send one lorry to Vinnytsia and hope to raise the same amount to send a second.

He has also worked with Werrington pubs The Dragon, The Ploughman and the Blue Bell to make the drop off points for donations. Cllr Fox will then take the donations to St Olga for them to be sent out to the Ukraine.

Fellow Werrington ward councillor and the city’s Mayor Councillor Steven Lane has been in touch with his counterpart in Vinnytsia to ask what exactly the city needs, in order to make sure the city is sending the best possible support.

The lorry, which arrived in the Ukraine last week, was full to the brim with ten tonnes worth of food, clothing, hygiene products, household chemicals, sleeping bags, baby nappies and first aid kits.

Cllr Fox, who has been out to Vinnytsia eight times and has both driven fire engines worth out of aid to the city, before the war, and hosted Vinnytsian children in Peterborough, has stressed the importance of re-establishing the relationship between the twinned cities.

He said: “I have been over the moon with the support of Werrington community. It is amazing to be able to send a lorry over there and be able to say Werrington sent that.

“If there are people that want to donate but can’t make it all the way to Woodston, they can take it down to one of the drop-off points and I can deliver it from there.

“I also have to praise the council, which has worked tirelessly to help support and cause.

“Then there are the people at the Ukrainian church. I can’t praise them enough for what they are doing. They are volunteers and they work extremely long hours and are there every day. They are phenomenal people, doing a great job.

“They often say that out of bad things can come good and hopefully, when all of this is over, we can redo the friendship link between our two cities.

“I used to go over there every year and it was a pleasure and I hope we can get back to that.”