Merkel to visit Templin

Chancellor Angela Merkel is to visit her home town of Templin in the Uckermark region, plant a lime tree and lay the foundation stone for a nursery school.

Angela Merkel

Templin (dpa) - A good two weeks before the Bundestag elections, Chancellor Angela Merkel will be visiting her home town of Templin in the Uckermark region on Friday. In the civic garden of the Brandenburg town, the CDU politician will plant a lime tree and lay the foundation stone for a nursery school.

In doing so, Merkel is keeping a promise she made in 2019 when Templin made her an honorary citizen, explained the town’s mayor Detlef Tabbert. "After all, she has many honorary doctorates, but only one honorary citizenship." He added that the chancellor was actually supposed to come for the 750th anniversary of the city in April 2020, but that the event had had to be postponed twice because of coronavirus. "This is the third attempt," Tabbert said. "We are pleased that she is taking the time to do this during such a turbulent period."

Incidentally, he remarked that a lime tree to be planted by the chancellor had already been ordered for last year's ceremony. Since Merkel was unable to come, a city official planted the tree instead, albeit one row back. According to Tabbert, the chancellor will now be able to plant the tree in the originally intended prominent place herself.

In addition, Merkel will be bringing a dedication with her that will be embedded in a copper capsule in the foundation stone of the new nursery. The school for 90 boys and girls is to be built next to the so-called Hyparschale, a listed concrete building. "The chancellor will remember this building as a restaurant," said the mayor.

Though born in Hamburg, Merkel had spent her childhood and youth in Templin from 1957 to 1973. Her father was a pastor there. "The Uckermark was and remains a home for her," government spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer had said last week.