La plus petite mairie de France:
La Venise Verte
The French Circle in Cheltenham was founded in 1947 and continues to thrive, with about 75 members of all ages, from Cheltenham and the surrounding area, who share an interest in the French language and all aspects of life in France and other French-speaking countries. It is affiliated to both the Alliance Française de Londres (see below) and the Cheltenham Arts Council.
Our season runs from September to May, and our programme of events consists mainly of illustrated talks/lectures given in French (conférences), which usually attract about 30 people. Most talks are given by native speakers of French. Many of the speakers are accredited by the Alliance Française, with occasional contributions from our own members. We also organise a couple of social events each year.
Anyone who shares our interests is welcome to join us. There is a wide range of linguistic abilities amongst our members but, given that all of our talks are in French, you will probably enjoy our meetings more if you have a reasonable knowledge of French.
In 2017 we celebrated our 70th anniversary. Our programme archive doesn't go back quite that far, but in just the last twenty years we have welcomed around 150 different speakers, some of them being invited back several times. We also hold social events, and in our anniversary year these included a boules match in the summer, and the celebrations continued with cake and wine on Monday 18th September, our first meeting of the 2017/18 season (see the 'photos' page). At this anniversary meeting, one of our recent distinguished speakers from the Alliance Française gave us an amusing, illustrated talk on the fables of Jean de la Fontaine.
The Cheltenham French Circle talks/lectures are generally held every two weeks on Monday evenings (usually the first and third Mondays of the month, but please check the programme for dates).
Talks start at 7.30 pm and last about an hour.
Please note that the first session starts at 7 pm to allow members to have a chat over a glass of wine or soft drink before the talk gets underway at 7.30 pm.
All other talks are followed by tea/coffee, biscuits and the opportunity to speak to other members or browse books/magazines donated by members.
We meet in St Luke's Church Hall, which is close to the town centre, very near the College Road entrance to Cheltenham General Hospital (see map opposite).
St Luke's Church Hall
St Luke's Place
More information (including detailed directions to help you negotiate the surrounding one-way streets!) can be found on its website, here.
The Cheltenham French Circle is affiliated to the Alliance Française de Londres, one of London’s foremost French language providers. The Alliance Française de Londres proudly supports affiliated French circles which hold an annual programme of lectures and socio-cultural events across the UK. Our mutual endeavours are part of a global network of like-minded associations.
Le Cercle français de Cheltenham est affilié à l’Alliance Française de Londres, l’un des centres de langue française les plus réputés à Londres. L’Alliance Française de Londres est fière de soutenir des Cercles français affiliés qui proposent un programme de conférences et d’événements socio-culturels dans tout le pays. Un réseau mondial d’associations similaires œuvre avec nous pour un dialogue des cultures enrichissant.