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The independent, intelligent guide to everything that matters locally JUNE 2020

YOUR SUMMER STARTS HERE... BRIEFING: COVID-19 Shops and businesses prepare to reopen as the lockdown eases


Decision date set at last for Bircherley Green plans plus round-up of the big stories


Latest takeaway initiatives plus new burger restaurant planned for Stortford


With galleries closed, Axis brings you its very own printed art exhibition featuring local artists

You can now also read us online every month at





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JUNE 2020 | NO. 209


Axis magazine was founded in 2003 by two award-winning former local newspaper editors who still own and run the business. We are the independent, intelligent guide to everything that matters in and around eastern Hertfordshire and we aim to provide a concise, useful guide to local life. Our editorial content is intelligently targeted towards readers’ interests, to maximise readership and gain the best exposure for our advertisers. The magazine is delivered to homes and businesses in selected areas and copies can also be picked up free from venues across the area.


If you don’t receive Axis magazine through your letterbox there are two ways of getting hold of a copy each month...

Pr e par ing f or t he ‘ new nor mal’ As the lockdown measures begin to be eased, everyone is looking forward to a return to some form of normality, however “new” that may be. This is a smaller than usual issue of Axis magazine due to the temporary closure of shops, businesses, venues, pubs and restaurants, yet it is still packed with vital local news and as much helpful information as we could fit in. We have also put together a “printed exhibition” of local art for you to view while galleries remain closed. We hope you enjoy it! Until next month’s issue, stay safe and, of course, stay alert. Aar on Grans by and Jus tine Woods , Publishers This month’s front cover images (clockwise from top): Artwork by local artists: Hertford by Steven C Harvey; North Heath, Waterford by Geoff Bennett of Hertford Art Society; River, Bishop’s Stortford by Carole Crosby and Thorley Flax Fields by Martyn Rogers (both of Bishop’s Stortford Art Society).

ADVERTISE NOW TO PROMOTE YOUR BUSINESS AND HELP I T BOUNCE BACK As businesses begin to emerge from lockdown, it will be absolutely vital to promote what you do. Axis has been established as THE high quality local print magazine for 17 years and, as an independent local business ourselves, we really understand how to work with you to make your advertising effective. Call us now to adve r tis e in our Jul y is s ue on 01992 500198 or e mail adve r tis ing@ax is publicat ions . co. uk

1 SUBSCRIBE For just £20 per year (we don’t make money from this, it’s just to cover the cost of postage) we’ll send you your own copy on the day of publication each month. Call us on 01992 500198 with debit or credit card details to start a subscription or send a cheque made payable to Axis Publications Ltd to the address in the Contact us section below. 2 PICK UP A COPY We make free copies available for pick-up at the beginning of each month at a number of venues including major retailers, arts & leisure facilities, restaurants & pubs. Call us for details of your nearest stockist.


Axis Magazine, Tooke House, 20 Bull Plain, Hertford SG14 1DT 01992 500198 PUBLISHERS: Aaron Gransby & Justine Woods Axis is published by Axis Publications Ltd

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Roads closed as social distancing measures are brought in to help our town centres reopen As the Prime Minister’s road map to lead the country out of the crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic begins to be implemented, local people and businesses are preparing to embrace the “new normal” as lockdown measures are gradually eased. Very visible signs of the new scenario are changes to local road layouts to allow for social distancing as shops in our town centres begin to reopen. Measures include some roads being closed to traffic, narrowed, or having parking spaces removed. Hertfordshire County Council, which is responsible for roads and footpaths, is working with public health advisors and East Herts Council to identify where temporary changes can be made so that shopping areas can cope with more visitors as lockdown restrictions are eased. The county council has identified 16 locations across Hertfordshire including in Bishop’s Stortford, Hertford and Ware, where it says existing road layouts would present a challenge to social distancing and where measures put

Yarn bombers’ Covid heroes up for auction

Social distancing measures in place in South Street, Bishop’s Stortford

in place by businesses may lead to queues on pavements outside. Changes already announced include the temporary closure to traffic and suspension of parking bays in parts of Fore Street in Hertford and South Street in Bishop’s Stortford. Hospitals on the front line While we look forward to some release from life under lockdown our hospitals continue to fight on the front line of the battle against Covid-19. At 27th May, the number of coronavirus-linked deaths at Lister in Stevenage was

148 and at The Princess Alexandra in Harlow 199. The public continue to support the hospitals and NHS staff. East and North Hertfordshire Hospitals’ Charity has exceeded its £5,000 target with its #Here4EachOther appeal on Just Giving. An online raffle of prizes donated by 33 Hertford businesses, organised by Hertford Town Council, has contributed another £3,005 towards the hospital charity too (prize winners are listed on The Princess Alexandra Hospital Trust’s Covid-19 charity page on the same platform has raised £34,000.

Hertford’s yarn bombers – the Secret Society of Hertford Crafters – are auctioning off 15 of their works celebrating key workers and Covid-19 heroes, as featured in Axis last month. These include the figure of Captain Tom Moore. The online auction runs until Wednesday 10th June and all proceeds will be shared between East Herts Citizens Advice and Carers in Hertfordshire. To take part in the auction go to: celebratingkeyworkersandcovid 19heroesauctionoffiguresnumber1

Major projects face delays due to the impact of coronavirus

The closed site at Westmill Road

The project to redevelop Hertford Theatre is one of a number in East Herts to be delayed by the ongoing Covid-19 situation. The theatre had been due to close in January 2021 for a £19.9million redevelopment to include an expansion of the main auditorium, a new 150-seat studio, riverside café bar and three cinema screens. East Herts Council says the theatre will now offer a full programme of arts events and activities through to July 2021 before it closes for redevelopment works to begin in August 2021. The theatre is now scheduled to reopen in late 2023. One of the problems being faced by the council on major projects

Some, but not all, household waste recycling centres are now open again in Hertfordshire for essential visits only. The sites open include: l Woodside Industrial Estate, Bishop’s Stortford CM23 5RG; l Pindar Road Industrial Estate, Hoddesdon EN11 0BZ l Brookfield Farm, Turnford EN8 0NP l Caxton Way, Stevenage SG1 2DF. Cole Green near Hertford was still closed when Axis went to press and the Westmill Road site at Ware is closed for construction works.

is an inability to undertake public consultations in the usual way. These were due imminently on the theatre plans. It is a similar situation with the redevelopment of Hartham Leisure Centre in Hertford and plans being created by the council’s development partner Cityheart for a new arts centre, housing and retail development at Old River Lane in Bishop’s Stortford. However, Northgate End car park in Bishop’s Stortford is still being closed from 1st June to make way for a new multi-storey car park to serve the town. Other projects facing delays include Hartham play area; the

Hertford Theatre in The Wash

refurbishment of Pinehurst community centre; a new hydro at Castle Weir – all in Hertford – and improvement works to Bishop’s Stortford’s Castle Park. The council says it will provide information on new timescales shortly.

Waste and recycling centres begin to open

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Love Hoddesdon leads plan for Covid-19 recovery in High Street The Love Hoddesdon BID (Business Improvement District) team has been supporting businesses in the town during the Covid-19 crisis and is now leading preparations for the anticipated reopening of some shops. Throughout the lockdown, the BID team has been providing daily updates about Government announcements. It has worked with others to provide training and guidance on issues such as employment law and welfare issues – and even included a daily quiz to help keep spirits up! As a stop-gap, the BID even offered businesses struggling for cashflow an advance payment of £2,500 against their Government grant to help ease immediate financial pressures in the early days of lockdown. The BID also worked closely with Broxbourne Council to facilitate early payments of the grants, helping to bring a cash injection of more than £2m into Hoddesdon. Now, as restrictions begin to be lifted, the BID is co-ordinating a recovery plan to help the town bounce back as quickly as possible. Shop Safe scheme One of the key challenges will be convincing shoppers that it is safe to shop on the High Street, so the BID has introduced the Love Hoddesdon Shop Safe scheme. This scheme, which around 50 small businesses are participating in, aims to reassure the public that

An artist’s impression of the planned Pavilions building

Above: BID manager Tony Cox Below: Hoddesdon pre-Covid

shopkeepers are taking steps to protect their health. The BID is providing PPE packs and a Code of Practice for shopkeepers and signs throughout the High Street will encourage social distancing. The recovery plan also includes a Shop Local publicity campaign; training for businesses to learn to deal with the “new normal”; and community projects and promotions to thank the NHS and other key workers. Love Hoddesdon BID manager Tony Cox said: “We are committed to get back the growing momentum surrounding the town before the crisis, so Hoddesdon is definitely open for business!”

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‘Monstrosity’ 10-storey Pavilions scheme rejected by councillors Plans to build a 10-storey block of flats on top of the Pavilions shopping centre in the heart of Waltham Cross have been refused by Broxbourne Council, with the council’s leader calling the proposed building “a monstrosity”. Cllr Lewis Cocking tore into the application by the centre’s owner Killultagh Estates at the meeting of the council’s planning and regulatory committee on Wednesday 13th May, saying: “I have never seen such a bad planning application.” Several other councillors criticised the height, bulk and design of the proposed new building. The 1960s-built shopping centre has 58 retail units on the ground floor with a multi-storey car park above arranged over 11 half decks providing 369 parking spaces. Killultagh Estates planned to make small changes to the retail space and provide a new entrance on Waltham Cross High Street. But the controversial element involved developing 199 apartments above

it by building on seven half floors of the car park and adding more flats on top, removing 194 parking spaces in the process. Speaking on behalf of Killultagh estates, Justin Mills warned that delay or refusal of the application “would inevitably affect” the company’s investment in Waltham Cross. But Cllr Paul Mason described the application as premature, because the council intends to develop an Area Action Plan to provide a full framework for the town centre’s future. Councillors unanimously voted to turn down the application even though council officers had recommended it for approval. They cited its visual impact, ‘prematurity’ and the fact that a Section 106 agreement to mitigate the impacts of the development had not been agreed. A spokesperson for Killultagh Estates said there was “no-one available for comment in the business” when approached by Axis magazine.

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Bircherley Green: At last, a date is set to determine Chase New Homes’ plan for Lea Wharf development The future for Hertford’s Bircherley Green shopping centre will finally be decided this month as East Herts Council’s development management committee convenes a special meeting to determine plans for the site from Chase New Homes. Chase want to mostly demolish the now empty, existing shopping centre and replace it with a mixed-use wharf-style riverside development comprising two main buildings with commercial space on the ground floor and 98 apartments above. The commercial space would be for a mixture of shops, restaurants and other uses and the currently closed car park would be reopened. Chase plan to rename the development Lea Wharf. The proposals also include an 86-bed hotel building with a restaurant underneath on the corner of Bircherley Street and Railway Street which has long been earmarked for Premier Inn. In a feature in Axis magazine last month Chase, who are based locally in Welwyn Garden City, explained how crucial it is to the

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A view of the proposed Lea Wharf development from the riverside

scheme’s viability for their planning application to be determined in June, not least because the nationwide economic situation is set to worsen as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. However, it looked unlikely that the plans would make the council’s scheduled development management meeting on Wednesday 17th June as fresh consultation on some changes made to the plans as a result of earlier feedback doesn’t end until 12th June. East Herts has now scheduled

in the extra meeting for 7pm on Thursday 25th June, dependent on no further amendments needing to be made post-consultation. The Bircherley Green saga has been ongoing for some six years now since previous owners Diageo formulated plans to redevelop the centre but eventually abandoned them and sold the site, which was by that time empty, to Chase. You can still comment on the amended planning application on East Herts Council’s website, until Friday 12th June. The application reference is 3/19/2614/FUL.

Setback for owner of Mill Studio over flats conversion plan The owner of Ware’s Mill Studio business centre has suffered a setback in his plans to convert the building into apartments. Robert Dixon Ltd wants to redevelop the serviced offices building in Crane Mead into 45 apartments. While permitted development rights allow office buildings to be converted to dwellings without planning

permission, a developer has to check with the council to see if their ‘prior approval’ is required, meaning that specified elements of the development are acceptable before work can proceed. East Herts Council confirmed on 12th May that its prior approval was required – and refused it. The applicant could now appeal or submit a full planning application.

New homes plan for Hertford Mill site Mill Studio in Crane Mead, Ware

Former bank buildings may be turned into bar and restaurant Two former bank buildings in Ware and Sawbridgeworth may be turned into a bar and a restaurant. Ware’s former NatWest bank building at 59 High Street is subject of a planning application for change of use by the owner of Brentwood bar and restaurant Vault. Peter Faires of Choice Ware Ltd has applied to East Herts Council for an A4 use (drinking establishment) for the building.

However, there appears to be some confusion about the proposed opening hours for the bar. Whilst the application itself requests hours from noon to midnight seven days a week, its design and access statement lists them as 7.30am to 11pm Monday to Thursday; 7.30am to 2.15am on Friday and Saturday and 9am to 10.30pm on Sundays. There have already been many objections to the plan, though the

People struggling with life in lockdown or the fallout from coronavirus can now access free personalised support from a new service run by therapists and wellbeing experts. Connected Together is the brain-child of Ware-based psychotherapist Natasha Crowe and has been launched in response to growing concerns about the impact of the current pandemic on people’s wellbeing and mental health. It will provide phone and online support for those in isolation, NHS staff, parents, the elderly, the self-employed, carers, and anyone feeling worried or anxious. “This service will give people free access to a team of trained therapists, counsellors, psychologists, SEN specialists and wellbeing coaches in their time of need,” Natasha explained. Call 0845 862 2427 or visit the website to arrange a free online video call or phone chat with an accredited expert lasting 30 minutes.

applicant would appear confident of gaining approval – Vault Shenfield is already promoting the Ware location on its social media. Meanwhile, Peter Bennett has submitted a planning application to East Herts seeking change of use to A3 (restaurants) for the Grade II listed building at 27 Bell Street, Sawbridgeworth which housed a branch of Saffron Building Society until last summer.

New plans for the redevelopment of the Hertford Mill site in Tamworth Road have been submitted to East Herts Council. T R Hertford Ltd submitted a previous application last year for 89 homes on the site which is yet to be determined. The new application proposes demolishing all buildings and replacing them with 49 new homes comprising 17 apartments, 14 three-bedroom and 18 four-bedroom houses. Developer Rockwell Homes is working with the applicant on the scheme and has posted details of the plans at axis magazine 9



Book your post-lockdown pamper at the Nail Studio Bramfield From her relaxing home studio in the lovely village of Bramfield, just outside Hertford, Cheri Clayton offers a full range of nail treatments, waxing, eyelash extensions, brow tinting and shaping, as well as semi-permanent make-up. Cheri has run her own studio for the past two years, and among its benefits are plenty of free parking and beautiful countryside views! So if you are looking for a safe, civilised and quiet environment to enjoy beauty treatments, Nail Studio Bramfield will be right up your street. In preparation for reopening from 6th July (provided the coronavirus restrictions allow), Cheri has been busy making her studio Covid-19 safe. Perspex screens have been installed and all clients will be asked to follow detailed health and hygiene protocols, full details of which are available from Cheri and are outlined on her website.

Treatments available Cheri uses products from Dermalogica for all her skincare treatments and Footlogix for all foot treatments. Hand treatments include a range of manicures, nail enhancements and gel applications from Bio Sculpture & Gelish. Relaxing therapies such as massage and paraffin wax treatments are also available. Cheri is fully qualified and insured for every treatment she offers. Follow @nailstudiobramfield on social media for monthly promotions or visit her website for full details on treatments.

Nail Studio Bramfield 5 Holly Grove Road, Bramfield, Hertford SG14 2QH 07530 797983

BOOK YOUR APPOINTMENT NOW! The diary is already filling up with people wanting to book treatments when lockdown restrictions are eased. Visit the website, call or email Cheri to book in from 6th July.

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Kids Connection has moved! Kids Connection has been in Hertford supplying school uniform for more than 20 years. Now, with the business growing, it has expanded into larger premises, moving from Market Place across town to Hartham Lane – just a 6-7 minute walk from its previous home and just around the corner from Sainsbury’s. Due to the Covid-19 situation, when the new premises opens social distancing measures and hand sanitising stations will be in place. You will be able to book an appointment to visit – see the website or social media for how. You can still visit without an appointment, but you may have to queue. Customers are encouraged to order online at as much as possible and select either delivery or collection upon checkout. You can call or email for help with your orders, particularly as sizing can be tricky. Kids Connection are still supplying dancewear and a small range of

school shoes for girls and boys, and will still fit shoes where possible, although parents will be encouraged to do this themselves with staff guiding them. A virtual shoe fitting service will also be available over video call for those who would like it. This service can be used when ordering shoes online; once you have received them a fitting session can be set up. Kids Connection already offers heat pressing and will be doing some embroidery as well. There are several car parks nearby, in Hartham Lane and St Andrew Street, so it’s easy to park and walk to the new site. The team say they can’t wait to show customers the new premises and hope you like the new location as much as they do! Kids Connection Unit 1A Great Northern Works Hartham Lane, Hertford SG14 1QW 01992 587466

Owner Anne MacDonald (pictured in her old shop) has moved Kids Connection to new, larger premises across Hertford in Hartham Lane

We have moved to a new home! Follow us on social media and see our website for opening times and updates We are now at: Unit 1A, Great Northern Works Hartham Lane, Hertford SG14 1QW 01992 587466 axis magazine 11



Make your home perfect this year with the help of Dobsons Dobsons, a family business based in Cheshunt, are delighted to reopen their luxury kitchen and bathroom showroom this month after closing during the lockdown period. Their priority remains the safety of their customers and staff and therefore they have decided to reopen on an appointment-only basis to limit the number of people coming in at any one time and to ensure social distancing and good hygiene practices can always be maintained. Nevertheless you will be able to browse their inspirational showroom in the usual fashion and enjoy their beautiful room sets and see samples. If you are still not feeling comfortable or are unable to leave your home then you can also enjoy a virtual tour of the showroom on their website and still get the full showroom experience. Throughout the lockdown period Dobsons, who celebrate 85 years

in business this year, have been working steadily from home on new enquiries. They are predicting a high demand for home projects this year in light of the amount of time people are currently spending at home and also because people unable to spend money on holidays may choose to invest in their homes instead. Dobsons are offering a remote design service wherever possible which involves a telephone consultation and then the client taking rough measurements and sending in photographs of their kitchen or bathroom with Dobsons designing from that basis, with an accurate survey carried out at a later stage to minimise the number of visits to your home. If you would like to book an appointment in Dobsons’ showroom then please call them on 01992 623066 or email some details of your project to

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A tale of two lives: Yes, times are tough but they have been a lot worse

Kevin Brooks of Cannon Travel offers a reality check for when we’re feeling down I am not going to write about the dreaded virus … well not too much! The bit I struggle with is how relentless the whole thing is and at times, especially at two in the morning, it does get me down but that is when I try to force myself to be positive. With that in mind I want to recount the lives of two men: me and someone I once knew. I was born in 1947 so have lived most of my life in the second half of the 20th century. Henry was born in 1898 so lived most of his in the first half of the century. My half could be described as a golden age; his half was full of turmoil. During my life I have travelled to many, many countries – he only went to Belgium and that was because at age 16 he signed up for the war and the bastard recruiting sergeants would ignore if someone was

Henry pictured on his wedding day

under-age because they got half-a-crown for each recruit. At 16 I was getting drunk, playing football and chasing girls; Henry was being invalided out of the Army with shrapnel wounds and a metal plate in his head. In my 20s I got married, started a family, had a reasonable job in a warm office and was buying a house. Henry struggled to find work, was rejected by the police and fire brigade because of the metal plate so became a labourer laying pipes and soon became a ganger (foreman). By the time he was 30 he had married a girl from Manchester and had two

daughters but his wife died and because there was no such thing as the Welfare State to help, the eldest daughter lived with his parents in Tottenham and the youngest lived with his late wife’s parents in Manchester. It was 18 years before the sisters met again. Life during wartime By the age of 35 I had been back and forwards to places like India, Pakistan and North America and was doing well at work. Henry was living through the Depression but eventually married again and started another family, just in time for the Second World War

during which he sent his wife and young children to Oxfordshire while he continued to live and work in London. He was rejected by the Army because of the metal plate. Somehow during this period he did manage to save enough for a deposit on a house, which cost £365. Following the war and its aftermath, which really lasted way into the 50s, he had got five sons but seldom saw them because he was now a general foreman in civil engineering and went where the work was. In those days they worked five and a half day weeks and because he didn’t have a car it sometimes wasn’t feasible to get home for just one night. On one particular job he only got home twice in a 12-month period. In the corresponding years of my life I had become a Managing Director for large manufacturing companies, earned good money and travelled a lot, after which I ‘retired’ early and got involved with my wife’s business and have continued travelling ever since. Henry never ever had a holiday in the UK or abroad and died shortly before his retirement. So at two in the morning when I’m feeling sorry for myself I try to think of Henry and ask myself whether I would swap my life for his. It doesn’t take much to work out that the answer is no! The current problems are nothing compared to what Henry had to live through and I find it extremely sad that his only trip overseas was to go to war. Henry, by the way, was my father.

From all at Cannon Travel

Look after yourselves, stay safe and we’ll be seeing you once it’s all over... we will all need a holiday by then! 96 High Street, Hoddesdon, Herts EN11 8HD & 49 High Street, Ware, Herts SG12 9BA 01992 441 521 / 01920 466 531 axis magazine 13



Gordon’s Alive! But what would he make of Dominic on Jackanory?

Stuart Everett of Hertford accountants Meyer Williams on the creative flouting of the PM’s ‘special one’ It is so long since Gordon Brown made a hash of the job of governing the country that we had all but forgotten him yet he is now offering his opinion on the great issues of the day as an elder statesman. At least his most recent pronouncements are encouragingly sensible but I do wonder what he thinks about the resignation of the Great Pretender’s ‘special’ advisor. Should he resign because the simple rules he told us to follow were too difficult for their ‘special’ creator to understand? Little did we know that the headline message ‘Stay At Home’ had some very small print attached which seems to exempt the wealthy and powerful so they can do what they want as long as they can make up a good story

How my younger self would have reacted on watching Dominic Cummings’ Jackanory appearance

that we all believe. The image on my TV of someone looking serious and reading out loud at teatime was reminiscent of my daily dose of Jackanory as a child. A wizard wheeze The art of the half-truth, which some might call a blatant lie, was also perfected by a ‘special’ advisor to the Great Pretender during the Brexit referendum campaign. It helped to win the referendum by putting a slogan on the side of a bus that was blatantly untrue. It was a bit of wizardry that worked a treat. Could it have been the same ‘special’ advisor? Or are there two? The concept of the two-faced wizard was of course created by J K Rowling and was, as far as I

understood, a work of fiction. The truth is however sometimes stranger than fiction. In my view nothing much would be achieved by the ‘special’ person being sacked or resigning. If he were, then in a couple of months when the delayed Queen’s Birthday Honours list is published there would for sure be a new Peer of the Realm … Lord Voldemort? Then he would remain unelected and running the country for the Great Pretender – from the confines of Barnard Castle no doubt. Incidentally, this was the place that gave rise to the Durham dialect phrase ‘Barney Castle’ meaning ‘pathetic excuse’. Apt. Away from Tom Riddle, there are still lots of positives to take from the Rat Race taking a threemonth holiday: clear skies, fresh

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Stag House, Old London Road, Hertford, Herts SG13 7LA 01992 550721 | | 14 axis magazine

air and the birds returning to the trees. Hopefully they will all remain. I get the sense that all those who have been furloughed are not in any hurry to rejoin the Rat Race when it finally gets going again; I am sure it would be preferable for the Government to pay us to be on holiday. Do not worry though, once the employer must pay 20-30% of the furloughed pay from August, I feel sure there will be a rush of unfurloughing! l We are as usual open for business so please let me know if you need help with your tax. Now is the time to get your tax return to HMRC so you can see how much tax you do not have to pay at the end of July!! (It will still have to be paid by 31st January 2021 though).

WHAT’S ON Hatfield House ramps up preparations for opening but farm and play area fall victim to Covid crisis

Henry Moore Studios & Gardens plan for opening

The team at Hatfield House are hoping to invite visitors back to the park, gardens, woodland walks and Old Palace soon, though they have decided that the house itself will remain closed this season due to the Covid-19 crisis. They have also taken the tough decision to permanently close Hatfield Park Farm and play area and will take time to review what attractions and experiences to offer in this area in the future. It is, however, hoped The Coach House Kitchen will be able to open with a reduced takeaway menu in a form which complies with the Government guidelines. Many of the public events that Hatfield usually holds have also had to be cancelled or postponed. Those cancelled include open air theatre performances by The Lord Chamberlain’s Men and Art in Clay. Annual events such as Battle Proms, Folk By The Oak and Classic Ibiza have been postponed

Henry Moore Studios and Gardens at Perry Green near Much Hadham are usually a popular destination at this time of year. But like other leisure venues they remain closed for the time being and are looking at how they can reopen soon. Godfrey Worsdale OBE, Director of the Henry Moore Foundation, said: “We are busy working on how to make it as easy as possible for people to visit us soon, and stay safe. We are reviewing the updated Government guidance and working to develop detailed and rigorous plans for how and when we will be able to begin to reopen safely and responsibly.” In the meantime, you can still explore the Foundation’s collections online, including by watching films and through the Foundation’s social media channels.

Waiting for the opening Picture by Stephanie Belton

until next year. A showpiece exhibition about Lord Burghley has also been postponed. Keep an eye on the Hatfield House website for updated information on future events including An Evening With Michael Bublé which is currently scheduled for Sunday 26th July.

Estate Director Anthony Downs said: “We would like to thank all our valued team and visitors for their continued support during this time. When the time comes, we can’t wait to welcome you, your friends and family back to Hatfield House, Park and Gardens.”

Closed Hertford Theatre fills its windows with pictorial ‘hugs’ from its supporters Despite being closed due to the Covid-19 crisis, Hertford Theatre has been finding new ways of engaging with local people so it remains at the heart of the community. A small team of staff have been busy starting to fill the building’s 51 metres of windows with artwork, photos and memories from people of all ages. Staff launched their #HugHertfordTheatre campaign, asking for “hugs” to fill the theatre’s windows with pictures of its audiences, supporters and

hirers. They requested colourful drawings, pictures or photos of families, friends and audiences at the theatre, or drawings or photos of a favourite show, a happy memory or a film or class they have attended. So far more than 100 pieces of artwork have been submitted. Theatre Director Rhys Thomas said: “We are delighted that our community have been so supportive and creative and we are genuinely touched with the reaction – thank you Hertford!” The aim is to get enough

submissions to wrap round the entire theatre – that’s a lot of hugs! There are several ways you can get involved: You can scan or take a photo of your work and email your pictures to Or you can send your hugs by post to: Ben Cannell, Hertford Theatre, The Wash, Hertford SG14 1PS. Or post them through the letterbox in person, but if you do please remember to observe social distancing and wash your hands before and after.


With no physical public art exhibitions allowed at present, Axis asked local artists to submit pieces of their work for potential inclusion in a special printed exhibition in this magazine. Overleaf on pages 16 & 17 you will find a selection of local scenes picked by us from the huge entry we received. We will publish more next month... axis magazine 15


THE LOCKDOWN EXHIBITION: PART ONE With no physical public art exhibitions allowed at present, Axis asked local artists to submit pieces of their work featuring or inspired by local scenes for potential inclusion in a printed exhibition. Most of these pieces are available for sale so please do support your local artists at this time, using the contact details alongside each work. More next month...

TOWARDS LITTLE HADHAM BY JULIE ARNALL Julie has been teaching art for 20 years and usually (outside of lockdown) runs classes in Hertford and Sawbridgeworth. This work, in graphite and watercolour pencil, is 40 x 30 cm and costs £140, unframed. You can contact Julie through her website:

FLOODING NEAR ROYDON LOCK BY ALAN BURGESS Roydon-based Alan Burgess’s landscape paintings are renowned locally and farther afield – he has exhibited widely and his work can often be seen at The Gallery at Parndon Mill in Harlow. The work shown on the right is typical of his style. This, a 30 x 40 cm oil on canvas, is for sale at £325. 16 axis magazine

WARE HIGH STREET BY SAM EDWARDS Sam grew up in Ware, where his family still lives, and recently moved to the Midlands. He is selling A4 prints of this picture on at £13.50 plus postage. His other work includes football grounds such as Ware FC and the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

THE WINTER FIELDS BY ABBIE ORDWAY Abbie uses alcohol ink to produce bold, happy, abstract pieces. The Winter Fields, priced at £55, is an example of her work but for more see her social media: Facebook: Abbie Ordway Art (@abbieoart) Instagram: Abfab68 You can also email direct at:

RIVER, BISHOP’S STORTFORD BY CAROLE CROSBY This work in acrylic is by artist Carole Crosby who is a member of Bishop’s Stortford Art Society. For more details about the society and its work visit:


A WINTER’S MORNING, PANSHANGER BY STEVE BALDWIN Steve is a photographer based in Hertford with a particular interest in landscapes and the night sky. All his work can be purchased as prints through his website. A 50 x 40 cm mounted limited edition is £75 and other sizes are available.

FOLLY ISLAND BY JOSEPH ROWSON Joe has been painting for over 20 years, initially using watercolour, migrating to oils and pastels. He has exhibited at numerous art shows and galleries and is a member of Hertford and Stevenage art societies. Folly Island is for sale at £120. 01438 813871

THORLEY FLAX FIELDS BY MARTYN ROGERS Martyn is a retired local doctor who paints for pleasure. He is a member of Bishop’s Stortford Art Society.

HERTFORD BY STEVEN C HARVEY Steven C Harvey is a landscape artist working in both oils and watercolour. Living in Hertfordshire, Steven has travelled many thousands of miles to seek inspiration for his work, examples of which can be seen on his website, where you can buy originals and prints. This Hertford watercolour (25 x 20 cm) is £240 framed.

BLUECOATS BY ANGELA ROBERTS A keen artist, Angela, with her late husband Roy, ran the three Wiggintons shops in Hertford for many years. Her work can be seen in Hertford Town & Tourist Information Centre.

NORTH HEATH, WATERFORD BY GEOFF BENNETT On retirement Geoff took up painting and joined the Hertford Art Society. He says he is “hopeless with watercolours, a bit better with oils and with acrylics or emulsion – they both give much the same result in my view!” North Heath is for sale at £120.

BLUEBELLS IN THE WICK BY CLIVE PATTERSON Clive has been working as a full time artist for over 10 years now and is producing submissions to the major London Institutes & Galleries as well as showing work at contemporary art galleries. Bluebells in The Wick is acrylic on canvas 63 x 78 cm framed, £600. axis magazine 17

FOOD & DRINK Chef behind pizza restaurant Dough and Co plans to open Burger Amour branch next door in Stortford A year after opening Dough and Co, the woodfired pizza restaurant at Bishop’s Stortford’s Anchor Street leisure centre, chef Christopher Sharman is getting ready to open a new venture, Burger Amour, in the adjoining premises. The restaurant, which is close to Empire Cinema and Ace of Lanes bowling alley, is due to be ready to open on 1st July and will open offering takeaway only to begin with, unless the Government restrictions on restaurants are lifted before then. The town’s branch of Dough and Co, the third in the Italian-style pizza chain, has remained open for takeaway throughout the current lockdown.

Burger Amour will offer a selection of smashed beef burgers – two patties made from British beef and served in a brioche roll – including the Original (with Monterey Jack smoked cheese, burger sauce, shredded iceberg lettuce, red onion jam, tomato and pickle) and the Spanish (with grilled chorizo, cheddar, roasted red pepper, red onion jam, iceberg, tomato and pickle). There’s also an Old English (a single patty of English barbecued pulled pork with smoked cheese, shredded iceberg, red onion jam and pickle), chicken burgers, ribs, a number of vegetarian and vegan burgers served in vegan buns, and sides including onion rings, fries, nachos and Mac n Cheese.

The Straw Hat now open for takeaway

Dough and Co in Bishop’s Stortford will soon have a sister restaurant next door

Takeaways now available at The Chequers Matching Green The Chequers at Matching Green has begun to offer a takeaway food and drink service from Thursday to Sunday. The pub and restaurant is offering a selection of its most popular dishes for collection between 5pm and 8.30pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays plus roasts on a Sunday between 12noon and 6pm. The menu, which can be viewed online, includes starters,

mains, sides and desserts, wines, beers and soft drinks – even four of its popular cocktails – Mojitos, Margaritas, Pornstar Martinis and Cosmopolitans. You can order online or by calling 01279 731276 up to four days in advance. When you arrive to collect simply pull up in your car, tell staff your order number and they’ll bring it out to you. Full details can be found at

Enjoy a traditional cream tea to go from Lussmanns Wimbledon may be cancelled (along with an awful lot else!) but the British summer is still in full swing. Appropriately for the start of the new season Lussmanns in Hertford has added cream teas to its popular Lussmanns ‘To Go’ offering. Last month Axis reported that the restaurant had launched its ‘To Go’ service offering a range of ready to cook meals as well 18 axis magazine

as fresh fish, cheeses, veg boxes, wines and beers. The menu and larder items are being added to all the time with new freshly baked white and wholemeal bloomers likely to be popular with those of us planning a family picnic, along with homemade fruit scones that come with strawberry jam and clotted cream for £2.95. We’ll see you (from a distance) in the park! Visit

The Straw Hat oriental restaurant in Sawbridgeworth launched its takeaway service in May with a limited menu of popular dishes available from 6pm at the weekend and from 2pm to 9pm on Sundays. You’ll find the menu on the restaurant’s Facebook page – search for@strawhatoriental. The menu also offers three set menus for parties of two or more. The Straw Hat is in Harlow Road, Sawbridgeworth CM21 0AJ. Order on 01279 722434.

The Fox Inn launches weekend takeaways Popular country pub The Fox Inn at Matching Tye is now offering takeaway food collection on Friday and Saturday evenings between 5pm and 8pm. The food is fantastic value, for example at the end of May you could have had either a curry with rice and poppadoms or a burger and fries for just £10 each. The menu changes every week so check online before ordering at or on Facebook (thefoxinnmatchingtye).

Fresh fish van at The Golden Fleece A fresh fish van is currently visiting The Golden Fleece at Braughing every Thursday between 9am and 10.30am. The pub’s Grimsby-based supplier is offering a selection of fresh fish. Payment is currently cash only. The Golden Fleece is at 20 Green End, Braughing SG11 2PG.






Open for local delivery and collection during the lockdown – you can even pre-order Sunday lunch from The Highland Restaurant in Broxbourne! The Highland is Hertfordshire’s premier traditional steak house. Now under new ownership, though within the same family, the Highland has been established for over 40 years, becoming a local institution. It continues to serve the finest steaks whilst also introducing new dishes such as burgers and ribs. The Sunday lunch at £16.95 for three courses is great value.

The Straw Hat is now open for takeaway in the evening at weekends and from 2pm on Sunday with a limited menu. Established for 16 years the restaurant is based in a beautiful listed building with a thatched roof which explains its name. The menu offers modern Cantonese cuisine that takes traditional dishes and reinvigorates them using high quality ingredients to produce healthy dishes that reflect today’s trends, including dishes for those on coeliac and gluten-free diets. The high quality wine list is also worthy of a mention.

The Golden Fleece is an old English pub with a contemporary twist, and one where the food is so good that it has earned an entry in the Michelin Guide for Hotels and Restaurants. Set at the heart of the village of Braughing, Jess and Peter Tatlow’s pub offers a menu of fresh, seasonal and delicious locally sourced food and also caters for diners who need gluten-free meals. As a free house the Fleece is also able to offer a wide range of real ales, beers, wines and spirits. The pub offers a local grocery service during lockdown – see website.

8-11 The Precinct, High Road, Broxbourne EN10 7HY 01992 466933

Harlow Road, Sawbridgeworth CM21 0AJ 01279 722434 Facebook: @strawhatoriental

20 Green End, Braughing SG11 2PG 01920 823555


THE FOX INN Traditional English Pub


The quality of the well-established Saffron in Hoddesdon was recognised when it was chosen as Best Indian Restaurant in Hertfordshire in the 2017 Curry Life Awards. This stylish restaurant is a contemporary venue in which both traditional and unique Indian dishes can be enjoyed alongside superb service. It can cater for both large gatherings and more intimate dinners. Saffron also hosts corporate events and offers outside catering, whilst takeaway and delivery is available too with a 10% discount for collections.

The Fox Inn is a traditional English village pub that has reinforced its place at the heart of the local community during lockdown. It is currently opening as a pop-up shop on Wednesday from 10.30am-3pm and Saturday from 10.30am-2pm stocking fresh fruit and veg, fresh meat from its butcher, and store cupboard staples. The Fox is also open for food takeaway collection on Friday and Saturday from 5-8pm. Takeaways change each week so check for menus on its website or

The popular authentic family-run Villa Italia restaurant in Sawbridgeworth has now been carefully adapted following all Government safety advice to offer a safe takeaway and free delivery service to surrounding areas during the lockdown. Visit the website for the full takeaway menu and look out for Sunday roast specials which change week by week. Orders can be placed by phone or email to and opening hours are Tuesday to Saturday from 5pm9.30pm and Sunday from 12.30-5.30pm.

25 High Street, Hoddesdon EN11 8SX 01992 461171 / 01992 461160

The Green, Matching Tye, Essex CM17 0QS 01279 731335

48 & 52 Bell Street, Sawbridgeworth CM21 9AN 01279 358358 axis magazine 19

9-13 Parliament Square n Hertford n SG14 1EX


• For Sale: £1,695,000 Warren Park Road, Bengeo, Hertford Entire wing of Edwardian mansion set privately within a sought after Bengeo road. Five bedrooms, three receptions, modern kitchen, large town garden.

01992 721 321 n

Profile for Axis Magazine

Axis magazine June 2020 issue  

The June 2020 issue of Axis magazine, the independent, intelligent guide to life in Hertford, Ware, Hoddesdon, Broxbourne, Bishop's Stortfor...

Axis magazine June 2020 issue  

The June 2020 issue of Axis magazine, the independent, intelligent guide to life in Hertford, Ware, Hoddesdon, Broxbourne, Bishop's Stortfor...

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