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Last Updated: Thursday, 1 April, 2004, 11:44 GMT 12:44 UK
Town twinned in April Fool's ruse
Barcelona skyline
Luton First says the town is vibrant, like Barcelona in Spain
Commuters in Luton were duped by a bit of creative handiwork in an April Fool's Day stunt.

Road signs dotted around the Bedfordshire town said it had joined forces with three cosmopolitan cities.

At first light on Thursday, signs were up announcing Luton's latest twins were Athens, Dublin and Barcelona.

It turned out to be an April Fool's ruse by Luton First to encourage local people and visitors to recognise how much the town had improved.

The organisation, a partnership between the council, the town's university, and local businesses, posted the signs to show that Luton had qualities in common with a number of respected cities.

Nik Earl, the spokeswoman for Luton First, said: "The signs are a bit of fun, with a serious message, Luton has come a long way in a very short time and is set to continue to develop."

She said the town had an arts scene like Barcelona, first-class colleges to make it a seat of learning like Athens 2,000 years ago, and a rapidly-improving economy similar to Dublin's.

The town is officially twinned with Wolfsburg in Germany and Bourgon-Jallieu in France, which have both been linked to Luton since the 1950s.


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