On the Friday, following a briefing by Mark Thompson, the group had dinner at a local restaurant with the Mayor of Torres Vedras, Carlos Bernardes. We then attended a very enjoyable orchestral concert by the volunteer firefighters from the city.
Saturday morning, we were officially welcomed by the Mayor at the city hall and given the opportunity to try the new Licor de Vinho, Linhas de Torres Vedras. We then visited fort São Vicente and the new Interpretation Centre there. Next stop was Mount Socorro to take in the magnificent views across the Lines.
Lunch was taken at Quinta da Povoa, which was the headquarters of General Spencer during the occupation of the Lines in 1810-11. Our host, Gonçalo Vasconcellos Guisado, showed us round his fascinating home, provided an excellent meal and an opportunity to try the ‘Old Nosey’ pear tonic.
Saturday afternoon was spent at fort Alqueidão where a historical re-enactment was staged. Also, during this visit the Friends and the ROTA made each other honorary members of their groups.
On Saturday evening, we attended the dinner to celebrate Lines of Torres Vedras Day which was held in a marquee in fort São Vicente. The food and the entertainment were excellent. Our host for the night from the City council was Ana Umbelino. Also, in attendance was ex-MP Antonio Rodrigues who was central to the official recognition of the Lines of Torres Vedras Day.
On Sunday, we visited two vineyards managed by one of our members, José João Climaco Melicias (Vitiscape). Our thanks to José for his interesting talk on the vineyards and the wine trade and also for the wine tasting in beautiful settings.
Our visit was a great success and the weather was fine and warm throughout. We would like to express our thanks to the Mayor for his support and attention. We would also like to thank; our guide on Saturday, Paulo Gomes; Ricardo Lopes who made most of the local arrangements and not least, our driver for the weekend, Carlos Antunes from West Shuttle.