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Image copyright David Long, Harlequin Photography

Volume 3 Issue 1



2002 - 201 2 Se rv in g lo ca co m m un it ie l s fo r 10 ye ar s

For local information, event listings and the best Watford businesses at your fingertips.


MORE TO READ ONLINE!! Extended editorials from this edition of The Flea

S PLU n n n n n


Medea reviewed by Euripides himself Superbike at Brands Hatch Calendar Girls at the Colosseum Virginia Corbett in St Albans More local music including the Shuffling Hungarians...


What’s on

Music, Theatre, Art, Clubs and Organisations.

Paul Tonkinson

Fancy Man Tour Read our exclusive interview with comedian Paul Tonkinson who appears live at Hemel Hempstead Old Town Hall on December 7th. You can also catch him from 21st – 23rd March at the Leicester Square Theatre in London.

The Enid

Exclusive interview with Joe Payne, the youngest member of The Enid who hails from Tring!

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Warner Bros. Studio Tour Six months after opening... A spokesperson for Warner Brothers Studio Tour said: “We are delighted with the response to the tour. Tickets were sold out for the first month before we opened and the tour is still popular.”

So what do people think of Watford’s great attraction? Charlotte Tottman: “As a huge fan of Harry Potter, my expectations of the Warner Bros. Studios were always going to be high, and the tour not only met them but exceeded them! My Harry Potter Studio experience was exhilarating, captivating, insightful and downright magical! It is an enormous studio and shows every single little detail that went into the making of each film.

The tour opened up the inner world of Harry Potter and revealed a host of sets, costumes, wigs, masks, dummies, visual effects, props, scenery and so much more! The tour begins in a truly magical and unexpected style which immediately captures the imagination and then plunges visitors into the centre of the Harry Potter universe. By the time I reached the end - which because of my own leisurely wanderings had lasted about three hours I vowed that I would certainly be returning again soon.”

Final comment from Warner Bros. “The tour is constantly evolving and we have recently added extra broomsticks to our green screen experience following customer feedback. We are also opening the Hogwarts Bridge so visitors can actually cross it as cast did in the films.”


Watford Music Scene By Pete Curtis

Welcome to the first of what I hope will be many contributions to FLEA - it’s a pleasure to have been asked to make some observations on the local music scene, with which I’ve been involved for 25 years or so, whether performing with various bands (notably Wing And A Prayer), or organising live music for The Rainbow Festival (sorely missed!) and other such local events.

Watford is bursting with talent - from hard rock, through 50 shades of indie, to more introspective singer - songwriters, Watford has it all, and the quality of the music they make is better now than it has ever been. All this music is available at the touch of a button, as this generation of artists is able to post efforts online as soon as recordings are finnished. So, how are you to decide which band or artist to go see live? Who to Google? First, the headbangers - rock is rarely out of fashion, so give a listen to Dorian Black, The City Is Ours, or Haywire Saint, each of whom has their own distinctive take on the rock template;


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failing that, perhaps you’re an indie kid, in which case the relentlessly upbeat Ghouls or The Late Day Breakers may float your boat - it’s a rare audience that can’t get up to dance when they play! For something a little darker try Blissett or Colvex, who hark back to The Velvets, Television, and The Cure for their sound. Melodic rock? Go for Chameleon Boy, who recently played the Alban Arena with Dodgy, to great acclaim, or the younger, edgier Colour Of August, who combine musical ability with tremendous promise. Or if acoustic songwriters are more your thing, then head for Tom Billington (ex - Mohair) or Tom Craven, Dodo Bones or Emma Wilson, to hear some beautiful examples of the craft. A few other names at random...The Spitfires, who are full of pith and vinegar; Benjamin Bloom, who epitomise baroque and roll; Only Twin, who bring you prog rock and are proud of it! And Underview, who bring you a good time! I should add that this is by no means a definitive list, so if your band doesn’t get a mention then drop the magazine a link and a few lines! So, a couple of clicks of the mouse will bring you up close and personal with some of the town’s exceptional talent. All you have to do then is decide who to throw your support behind. Live music needs YOU! For the full article including the venues, go to

The Enid interview The Enid lead singer Joe Payne, who hails from Tring, took a few minutes out to talk to our own Joe McKenzie about his experiences and feelings of being in a band with such a history and tradition. Visit The Enid’s new album “Invicta” will be released on the 10th November 2012.


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Keeping your wheels in motion


hen local family man and rugby enthusiast Steve Simmonds decided to set up his own business, his 35 years motor trade experience helped him create a clean and well-organised garage. “I knew I could offer better value and a more personal and convenient service” said Steve. “People want a garage they can trust and European Law has given even new vehicle owners the right to choose where to have their vehicle serviced.” The result was Automaster GB, conveniently located a stones throw from Watford town centre and, within five years, one of Watford’s best-loved and most trusted garages.

Serving businesses as well as individual car owners, Automaster GB has built a solid reputation for friendliness, efficiency, expert advice and top quality work - backed up by a satisfaction guarantee and an outstanding customer experience.


Pick up & delivery

Leather-clad petrol heads wander around the large paddock at Brands Hatch talking horsepower and “knee-down”, while girls in fleeces festooned with oil company logos mill about looking cold and bored. The engines on distant parts of the track sound more like a swarm of angry bees than highly tuned, 200mph machines. The final round of the MCE Insurance British Superbike was set up to be a real cracker.

Collection and delivery are FREE within a ten mile radius and a FREE summer or winter check is included.

Open six days a week and equipped with the latest technology, Automaster GB offers a complete range of servicing, repairs and body work for any make or model of car or van. It is also a VOSA approved MOT testing station. 10 mile radius

Steve said “My customers trust us to keep their wheels in motion - and that’s exactly what we do. Our reputation has spread well beyond Watford as people have learnt to trust the consistent quality and value that we offer.” For your next service, repair or MOT, why not give Automaster GB a try? Call Steve on 01923 220863 or book your service on line at

Automaster GB, Unit P2, Penfold Trading Estate, Imperial Way, Watford, WD24 4YY T: 01923 220863 M: 07876 031959

For complete article, visit:

The 23rd of October marked the first anniversary of the death of Marco Simoncelli, who sadly lost his life at the 2011 Malaysian round of the MotoGP season. An anecdote MotoGP hero:



“I decided to get my bike licence, as I wanted to ride around on the road with a bigger bike than a 125. I was ecstatic after passing my test. Two days later, they took it off me for speeding.” RIP Marco Simoncelli.


Austerity Measures Above, Italian Gardens Below, Peter Pan

with Troddy


ondon parks can provide a great day out at minimal cost. Take, for instance, King Henry VIII’s deer park, now Kensington Gardens. Go Central Line to Lancaster Gate, cross the Bayswater Road at Marlborough Gate and in to the Park. On your left, the serene Italian Gardens. Here many cool fountains play, conceived as a token of love for Victoria by Prince Albert. Much has just been restored to former glory, courtesy of the American Tiffany Foundation. Beautiful! However, close to the Park entrance, don’t miss the delightful little drinking fountain on the right. Topped by a bronze sculpture of two bear cubs embracing, this actually works and it’s free! You won’t need to buy bottled water today. Along the path, Long Water to your left, there’s a chance to identify 20 or more water birds with the aid of an adjacent information plaque. Opposite is George Frampton’s ‘Peter Pan’. For exactly 100 years the fairies and rabbits of the sculpture have been lovingly touched by

the exploratory hands of both adults and children. Frampton knew a thing or two.

Cut across the grass or take the path 100 yards to the right for a change of mood. ‘Physical Energy’ a massive bronze sculpture by G.F.Watts comes into view. Horse and rider are still as fresh and vital as the day the work was erected in 1907. Swivel round, look across Long Water to glimpse, on the skyline, Henry Moore’s ‘The Arch’. It’s 6 metres high, weighs 37 tonnes, made from Roman limestone and has just been restored at a cost of £125,000.

to 18th. Nov. The German artist Thomas Schutte shows sculptures, painted and photographic portraits. Want a free copy of the ‘Guardian’ or ‘Independent’? There’s usually one to pick up in the foyer here. Outside the gallery, this year’s pavilion has been created by Herzog & de Meuron (architects of Tate Modern) and Ai Weiwei (Chinese artist of the ceramic sunflower seeds). It’s open until 14th October but if you miss it there will be a different one to experience next year. The coffee here is good and you can sit with cork tables, chairs and surrounds. Kids can scramble around too. Off across Kensington Gore to experience an idea new to London – pedestrians and vehicles share the road space in Exhibition Road. If you live, you can say it works. More sculpture: newly erected are at least 4 monoliths by contemporary wizard Tony Cragg. Worth a look. Double back to the bus stop opposite the Royal Albert Hall and catch a number 9 bus – wait for one of the old Routemaster ones – then glide through the heart of the West End to Trafalgar Square. Finish the day with a visit to the Chandos pub, corner of St.Martin’s Lane. Head for the Opera Room upstairs and grab a glass of Old Brewery bitter; sink into a comfy couch and admire the stained glass windows and exquisite tiling. A bowl of chips could be nice! Costs for the day excluding fares:

Coffee (Americano) £2.00 On to the ‘30s tea room converted as the Serpentine Old Brewery bitter £2.90 Gallery. Exhibitions here are Chips £1.50 always free. From 25th Sept.


Concrete Gardens By David Deegan

Front Garden By TM Garden Designs


arlier this year it was reported that 85% of front gardens in Greater London had been lost to car driveways, an area estimated to be equivalent to 5,200 football pitches in the capital alone. Nationally, figures from the RAC foundation show around 80 per cent of Britain’s 26 million homes were built with a front plot. Of these around seven million gardens are now concreted over to park cars rather than grow flowersthat’s an area equivalent to 100 Hyde Parks!

Creating a Front Garden to include extra parking space! By TM Garden Designs

From the loss of front gardens to school playing fields, green space in our towns and cities is fast becoming a dwindling oasis. With no planning consent required, it is down to people to think carefully before paving over. For a nation that wails if windturbines are put up in their backyard, it seems slightly mystifying that when it comes to creating a concrete jungle to make way for ‘king’ car, most couldn’t care less. Front gardens bursting with flower bring much more than colour into our lives. In an age transfixed by technology, we have become divorced from nature; we have forgotten the hand that feeds us and failed to notice the degradation we are causing to our quality of life.

Heating bills going through the roof?

To read the full article by Thrity Mama, including tips and suggestions, visit


hen I design front gardens one of the common requests is to increase the area for parking. Since October 2008 there has been legislation in England regarding the area of front garden that can be paved over with traditional non-permeable materials, such as concrete or paving slabs if the water runs onto the road. Should you want to use these materials and rain water runs onto the road, you will need planning permission if the area is more than 5m². No planning permission is necessary as long as you ensure that any run off is directed back into the garden, into flower beds or lawn, or by installing a strip drain along the edge with the water being then discharged into a drain or soak away. For details of legislation regarding paving in the front garden: commonprojects/pavingfrontgarden/

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She refused medication... ‘I just want to be as I was...’ said Sue, 40, enquiring about my courses in Autogenic Training (AT). Sue reported headaches, occasional irritable bowel syndrome and anxiety: all stress related symptoms. She refused medication. During

my 9-session course, in a small group, she realised how angry she felt when her boss demanded ‘urgent work’ at fiveto-five and then went off home leaving her to do it. With AT she realised she had been afraid of her resentment and never spoken up. Now she understood

that her symptoms had been the signal to make changes in how she managed her life. ‘Now I don’t want to be as I was. That is what led me to be ill. I now know who I am and what I need, and I can say so.’ Jane Bird, SRN, DipAT (see below)

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Think of a cigarette


Cure for ACNE... I’m 17 years old and have spent the last 4 years trying every possible product or natural remedy for acne. My life has been taken up with this task. Thoughout the day I am constantly aware of my appearance and plaster my face with makeup to try and disguise it. BUT NOT ANY MORE!!! Hooray, it’s a miricle and what a difference it’s made to my self-confidence! If nothing else has worked for you then try natural Barley Grass. I bought mine from:

020 8866 4326 If the next thought you have is similar to … “ooh yes, that’ll be great” then you might like to read on. If, at some time over the next hour or so, you also think, “I wish I could give up”, maybe with a fatalistic sigh, or a guilty look in your wallet, then you might like to come and see me. My fully researched stop smoking therapy was found in a recent survey to be 92.5% effective. Why is this therapy so effective? Because it’s easy, there are no withdrawal symptoms or cravings, nothing is missing, no regrets. Imagine what it’ll be like when you never think about cigarettes again. What will you do with all that time? What will you do with all that money? How proud will you feel that you’ve kicked the habit? 92.5% success. Call me today if you want to be a non smoker tomorrow. Tania Clarke Psychological Trainer and Pure Hypnoanalyst 07717 410 910


Mini Courgette Frittatas Preparation 20 mins, cooking 15 mins Ingredients 4 eggs 120g sour cream 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh chives 2 small courgettes, grated coarsely 2 tbsp finely grated parmesan 1 tbsp coarsely chopped fresh chives, extra. Method

The Australian Women’s Weekly - tapas mezze antipasto & other bites

1. Preheat oven to 180oC. Lightly oil two 12-hole yorkshire pudding trays. 2. Whisk eggs with two-thirds of the sour cream in a large bowl until smooth; stir in chives, courgettes and cheese. 3. Divide mixture among the pan holes. Bake, uncovered for 15 mins; turn onto wire rack to cool. Top frittatas with remaining sour cream and extra chives.


The Watford Workshop If you can help in any way at all, please contact Linda McIntyre or Gordon Sellers at: or call on 01923 220256. Visit their website:


he Watford Workshop is still trading despite the government’s efforts to close down specialist workshops for people with learning disabilities. The Workshop provides comprehensive and competitively priced services including packaging, light engineering and assembly, and are still in business after 40 years due to the high quality of the work produced and the business acumen of the management.

There is a full story about the controversial ‘Sayce’ report, (recommending grants should be spent enabling disabled people to enter mainstream employment) and the Watford Workshop, it’s employees and the business they do, which can be read online at Currently the Watford Workshop is in need of volunteers, either able bodied or with disabilities, specifically a finance director, marketing director, shop floor coaches and trainers.


Tears on the first day of work... A

nineteen year old girl started a new job with a local business and, as part of her first day tasks, was asked to distribute leaflets publicising this business in Watford town centre. Within minutes she was approached by a Watford council employee who aggressively told her to stop and forced her to sign for an £80 fine by threatening to increase it to a £1000 if she didn’t. Mayor Dorothy Thornhill paid a visit to Evolve Salon and Spa to try and gain an understanding of how and why this incident happened. After a long discussion between Mayor Thornhill and the

Employment Law - Talk to the experts! At Moore Solicitors we help you to solve work related problems. Perhaps it is an issue about failure to promote you at work, bullying, harassment, discrimination (Race, Sex, Disability, Age, Religion, or Sexual Orientation), victimisation; or you may be facing redundancy or have been dismissed for gross misconduct? We can advise on a new contract of employment or simplify terms that have been given to you. We can advise on Compromise Agreements and Exit Packages. We provide initial telephone advice for FREE and can then work on a fixed fee or hourly rate or be paid under your legal expenses insurance; we do some cases on a No Win No Fee basis.

owners of Evolve Salon and Spa, the Mayor has requested a review of the leafleting and littering byelaw and its implications, to make sure something like this does not happen again to small business that legitimately and responsibly use leaflets as a main source of advertising. One of the main changes Mayor Thornhill will try to implement is a culture of warn first, fine later which she admitted seemed to be deficient, especially in this case. For a full and complete article about this issue, visit our website

What’s that about work? The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary. Vince Lombardi (June 1913 - Sept 1970)

Doing good business at the Gym! Have you ever wanted to expand your business but just can’t see the wood for the trees? A couple of weeks ago, after being in the gym, I was getting changed and having one of those general “yeah everything’s great!” type discussions, when one of the guys said he had a great new side line spin off business that complemented the long established one and that he had big plans for expansion.

01923 238 427 or 07930 968 788

He eulogised how it would grow in the next year, opening strategically located depots with mini storage facilities and showrooms, how there were going to be accredited and trained staff... all sounds great so far, but then came the issue of how he was going to do this and how would he finance such a grand plan. The banks now-a-days are not as helpful as they could be (unless you underwrite their risk). Management of such a project is no small feat, especially whilst keeping the current business tracking along nicely.

“I grew my small business at a rapid rate” came this voice from the now-quiet changing room. “Would you be interested in how you replicate

Call Harsha Moore today to talk through your work problems and see what solution is best for you.

Solving work related problems

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13 your business, grow your customer base, grow revenue and margins and get paid for it?” And the person in the corner of the room started to explain what franchising and becoming a franchisor was all about. He explained how he had documented his own business, defined an operations manual for others to follow and drawn up a contract that he just replicated, over and over, as he sold off territories around the UK (and elsewhere overseas); helping others to set up their own businesses. After discussing in more detail what franchising really was, he started to feel it was a great idea, but just too much to try and do himself: which is when he asked his killer question, “Where and how did you find the time?” The answer came back, “I didn’t, I overheard someone talking about it, just like you, and I was given a business card of someone who franchises businesses as his day job; would you like his contact details?” This is a true story. More next month to see how they get on.... By Phil Francombe, How2Franchise

Child found living in a cupboard under the stairs!

Shirley Batten-Smith

Do you remember the first time the world met the boy wizard, Harry Potter? He was living in a cupboard under the stairs at the home of his aunt, Petunia Dursley, who had reluctantly agreed to be his Guardian when both his parents were killed. Of course, it couldn’t happen in real life today – could it? What will happen to your children? If you don’t have a plan they could end up in impoverished circumstances, living with people you wouldn’t have chosen and enduring a miserable existence. If you have ‘parental responsibility’ for a child, you can make a Will and include an appointment for a ‘Testamentary Guardian’ and also include arrangements to ensure that the Guardian is able to cope financially with the responsibility and to help and support your children if you are no longer there for them.


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Answers to our


can be found at

Across 1. Nickname of second largest state in USA (4,4,5) 8. Aerial (7) 9. Au natural (5) 10 Not soft/difficult (4) 11. Clavicle, scapula and humerus make one of these (8) 13. Cushion/bed headrest (6) 14. Sixth rainbow colour (6) 17. Puffy-Lion Dog (4,4) 19. Crossword set of clues (4) 21. Those people’s (5) 22. In computing, denoted by #!/Entirely (7) 24. To be _ in love (4,4,5)

Gloword and Quiz

Quiz These questions cover the first four Harry Potter films. Test your knowledge and see how well you can do. Try and get them all without using a spell, or the internet!


Down 1. An old English field (3) 2 & 23. Form of fossil fuel (7,3) 3 To dispatch (4) 4. Boeing AH-64 (6) 5. Hopeful, confident (8) 6. Inquired/enquired (5) 7. A comforter (9) 10. Playground game (9) 12. Orchestral piece (8) 15. Period after Bronze Age (4,3) 16. To disarrange (hair) (6) 18. Greek letter, also brand of watch (5) 20. Network (4) 23. See 2 down

1) Who taught Harry’s first flying lesson?


Easy 1) How old is Harry when he is summoned to Hogwarts? 2) Into which part of Harry’s body did the Basilisk fang inject poison? 3) Who is Harry’s Godfather? 4) How old was Harry when “He-Who-MustNot-Be-Named” killed his parents?







2) Who did Harry become to get into Slytherin House? 3) What present did Harry receive from Hermione for his birthday? 4) Which Professor can see through Harry’s invisibility cloak? Hard




11 12



1) What present did the Dursleys give Harry for Christmas? 2) What was the name of the liquid Harry had to take to bring back the bones in his arm? 3) What false name does Harry first give to the conductor of the Knight Bus? 4) What password does Harry use to gain entrance to Professor Dumbledore’s office?


16 17


19 20




23 01923 250648 07792 555403

The Watford Flea Issue 301  

For all Watford's Family, Lifestyle, Education and Arts needs, The Flea has it! More than just a magazine.

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