By Merle Monahan/Contributing Writer/

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 14, 2007

Folks in Southern Isle of Wight County received a real treat Wednesday when 24 new friends from Isle of Wight, England, stopped off for a visit.

The British were in the midst of a weeklong tour of the county to help commemorate the 400th anniversary of the founding of Jamestown.

Hosted by the county, the visitors were given a tour of several points of interest in southern Isle of Wight by Board of Supervisors member Phillip Bradshaw and Judy Winslow of the Isle of Wight Tourism Bureau.

Starting with a two-hour walk through International Paper, where the guests learned firsthand how paper is made, Bradshaw then led the group to Carrsville Elementary School for lunch.

“This is such an honor for my students,” said Principal Jackie Carr, as the visitors filed past about 40 first-graders, who were lined up on both sides of the entrance hall. “They have been anxiously awaiting your arrival all morning.”

Several students spoke before the group, which had assembled in the school library. One welcomed the visitors, while another gave a brief history of the school.

Carr offered a tour of the facility, which was welcomed by the guests.

Said one of the visitors, “I am really impressed. I have seven school-aged grandchildren, and this is one of the stops I really wanted to make.”