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the monthly newspaper for Abbots Langley and surrounding district - since 1992

ISSUE NO. 238 May 2014


- Local Business Scoops Regional Award

Royal Visit to Hunton Bridge P

rincess Anne arrived at South West Herts Narrowboat Project in Hunton Bridge on 2nd April to visit the new narrowboat Pickle’s Folly. The Princess Royal was due to visit the site last October but a very wet day cancelled her arrival. Princess Anne was greeted by trustees of the local charity spending time with each member to discuss their part in Pickles Folly. Peter Lincoln, Chairman of the Trustees for SWHNP, guided HRH round the site and onto the recently built Pickles Folly to view the internal facilities. She spent some time talking to volunteers and pupils from Bushey Meads School who have

used Pickles Folly for a trip asking them various questions. A posy of flowers was presented by Lee Keogh to HRH, Lee being the first wheelchair user of Pickles Folly. Overall, the visit was a success with Princess Anne taking great interest in the charity and made an effort to talk to almost everyone on site. Dicks Folly and Pickles Folly is available to youth and community groups for day or weekend trips along the Grand Union Canal. For more details, please visit the website www. Photo shows HRH Princess Anne with pupils from Bushey Meads School who have used Pickles Folly

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Tel: 01923 263823/262405 The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 1

Hillside Residents Association A

fter just approximately six weeks of being installed, the new canopy on School Mead has been vandalised. The top of the canopy has been slashed, much to the disgust of Hillside Residents Association. About £60,000 has been spent on improving the green area on School Mead for the benefit of local residents only to be ruined in seconds. West Herts Community Housing Trust have been informed of the damage and are looking into it. It is hoped it will be repaired soon but obviously at cost. If you have not seen the area recently, please do pop by and take a look. There is an area under the trees that have had wild flower seeds planted, we should start to see the benefit of these very soon which should last throughout the summer. Two paths have also been laid to allow pedestrians to walk over the green and a play area for children. Tanners Wood School have already started using the green on a lovely day for some of their lessons. The Hillside Residents Association has so much to offer the local community. There is a recently opened Credit Union Collection Point at the office in School Mead which is open every Friday from 9am to 10am. On Wednesdays and Thursdays there are computer lessons

with AGE UK, Tuesday afternoons some meditation. There is a room available for a very small donation to hire for either a one off or a regular meeting base. The office is open for all kinds of queries, always in confidence, for any worries local residents may have on Tuesdays from 10am to 12 noon and again on Fridays from 10am to 12 noon. Problems such as housing, repairs, local Highways problems (roads/pavements/ street lighting etc) can all be brought to the attention of the volunteers and they will go out of their way to help or sort the problem out. They are your support during difficult times. • There is a Facebook page for anyone to “like” to keep up to date with their news. • HRA will be at the Abbots Langley Carnival on Saturday 14th June, please do stop at the stand as you pass by. • An open meeting will be held on 29th July for Hillside Residents at the Manor House where MP Richard Harrington and Police Crime Commissioner David Lloyd will be in attendance to answer any questions you may have. To contact the HRA team, telephone 01923 261734 with a 24 hr answerphone service or email hillside.residents@

PAGE 2 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Emergency Services Day H

undreds of local residents descended on the area of the car park at the Abbots Langley Police Station on Sunday 6th April for the Emergency Services Community Day organised by Abbots Langley Police. There was so much for the children to enjoy such as being put into the back of a Police van, trying on police uniform, having your finger print taken, face painting, fancy dress competition. Other visitors had the chance to look round the emergency service vehicles, meet officers, fire-fighters, paramedics and witness demonstrations. There was crime prevention advice, security marking for bikes, scooters and horse saddles as well as seeing a display on the history of policing in Hertfordshire. The Dogs Trust also microchipped over 50 dogs free of

charge, alongside the local council animal welfare officer who gave dog owners lots of advice. Safer Neighbourhood PC Dani Howlett-Bolton organised the event. She said: “It was a fantastic day and we could not have asked for a better turn out from the local community. This is the first open day we have held at the station and we’re already being asked when the next one is being held so we hope to repeat it next year. “I would like to Thank Warner Bros Studios, Hobbycraft (Watford), Harvester and Budgens for the kind donations they gave towards the day. Also I would like to Thank Abbots Langley Council for allowing us the use of the car park and to the Abbots Community Centre for allowing us the use of the tables and chairs.”

Local Business Scoops Regional Award M

K Ginder & Sons has been voted Funeral Planner of the Year for the North London and East England region in the annual awards run by leading funeral plan provider Golden Charter. The Watford firm was named the best large North London and East England firm in the prestigious awards which were open to Golden Charter’s network of more than 3,000 independent funeral directors. The team at M K Ginder & Sons won the award in recognition of their dedication and commitment in providing an outstanding service to the local community. Funeral Director Adam Ginder received the award on behalf of the company from Ronnie Wayte, Chief Executive of Golden Charter. In addition to the contemporary award and framed certificate from Golden Charter, the Woodland Trust has dedicated 10 trees in M K Ginder & Sons’ name at Bramingham Wood, Luton, in recognition of their achievement. The firm was established in 1983 by Martyn Ginder

and is today run by his wife Jean and sons Adam, Russell and Daniel. From their offices in Central Watford, North Watford, Bricket Wood, Bushey, South Oxhey and Abbots Langley, the family and staff provide a valuable service to the local community. Adam Ginder said: “The award recognises the hard work, dedication and professionalism of all my colleagues.” Ronnie Wayte, Chief Executive of Golden Charter, said: “This is the 21st year of these awards, and each year it becomes more difficult to choose a winner. Through these awards Golden Charter celebrates personal excellence and professional commitment in one of the most difficult and challenging areas of serving the public. “The team at M K Ginder & Sons has set a very high standard and we are delighted to recognise this tremendous achievement.” Customers buying pre-paid funeral plans are protected against inflation and benefit from peace of mind knowing their family will be able to pay

Contacts for

The Villager Editorial Julie Barton, Charter Court, Vicarage Lane, Kings Langley, WD4 9HR Phone: 01923 270160 e: Advertising Julie Barton, Charter Court, Vicarage Lane, Kings Langley, WD4 9HR Phone: 01923 270160 e: Reporter Joy Mann Phone: 01923 264298 Accounts e: Sign up for our additional weekly email, full of lots of useful informtion for Abbots Langley, Kings Langley and surrounding areas. Contact to be added to the mailing list or sign up through our website:

Sport Editor Tony Thompson The Hornets, Croft lane, Chipperfield. WD4 9DU Tel: 01923 265690 Features Andrew Selby, 8 Belham Road Kings langley WD4 8BY Tel: 01923 264479 Collection points for copy in Abbots Langley Eve Durtnall, 1 Popes Road, Abbots Langley or Abbey Pharmacy High St., Abbots Langley The Publishers take all reasonable steps to ensure the accuracy of the content of The Villager but cannot accept responsibility or be held liable for any errors or claims made by advertisers. The Publishers also ask you to note that they do not necessarily agree with views expressed by contributors Reproduction in whole or part prohibited without permission

Copy deadline for next issue: strictly Friday 23rd May

Valerie Smith with Adam Ginder who received the award on behalf of M K Ginder & Sons for a funeral no matter how far into the future. Golden Charter, which has seen its own sales rise by two thirds for the current financial year, estimates that in 2013 independent firms held around 42% of the funeral plan market with corporate providers such as Co-operative Funeralcare and Dignity accounting for the rest. Similar in structure

to that of a mutual society, Golden Charter is owned by and run for the benefit of its members – independent funeral directors. This means that all surpluses are used to support these independent funeral directors or paid to the Golden Charter Trust to the benefit of plan holders and the funeral directors.

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The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 3

Comedians Raise Money For Charity

Social evenings are held at the Manor House, Abbots Langley on the second Thursday of each month from 8pm to 10.30pm. There are also a variety of outings organised throughout the year that are announced at our social meetings.


he War Memorial Fund was a beneficiary of money raised at a Comedy Night held at Henderson Hall on 9th April, organised by local professional comedian Dean Courtney along with other comedians.

The evening raised over ÂŁ700 for charity which was split between the War Memorial Fund and Help for Heroes from ticket prices and a raffle. Watch out for another comedy night later in the year.

The Royal British Legion Abbots Langley Branch We welcome all those interested to join us. Monthly meetings are held at the Abbots Langley Men's Club on the 1st Monday of the month (except on Bank Holiday when we assemble on the 2nd Monday) at 8pm. Everyone welcome.


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PAGE 4 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Nash Mills, Hemel Hempstead

Jigfest 2014 T

he sixth annual Jigfest held on 5th April in the Abbots Langley Community Centre was a great success. People travelled from all over the county and beyond and the range of jigsaws on display changed constantly as the day progressed. Among the visitors were Les Mead, Chairman of Three Rivers District Council, Mrs Mead and Gloria Keaveny, Chairman of Abbots Langley Parish Council. They are shown in the photo with Brian Hibberd, who organised the event. The many helpers worked

tirelessly at tasks like stewarding, assembling and disassembling jigsaws and providing tea, coffee and cakes. We were ably entertained throughout by members of Abbots Langley Orchestra. We succeeded in raising £1550 which will be divided among Taekwondo, AIMS (Abbots Langley Improvements), the Bedmond Task Force and the Community Centre itself. Thank you to everyone who helped in any way on the day and beforehand and to M K Ginder & Sons for sponsoring the annual event. Kate Quinton

Ainsworth Care

Unit 15, Sunderland Estate, Church Lane Kings Langley, Herts, WD4 8JU

Large enough to cope small enough to care Providing quality home care to the community since 1994 Homecare enables people to have a choice to remain at home with practical support. Our trained care workers can help you with the tasks that you are struggling with or unable to do. We will visit you in your own home so that we can assess your needs and together we can create a bespoke service especially for you We can provide you with a private care package or you can use your direct payments or individual budgets to fund your care. Please ring 01923 269877 or email


‘Friars Mead’ Residential Care for the Elderly Rockliffe Avenue, Kings Langley

Fully Registered Residential Care for the frail elderly with own Bedroom and en suite Bathroom. Attractive Lounges and Dining Room, with large garden and regular activities and outings. Full information from: Mrs Karoline McCarthy, Manager 01923 270304 or visit our website:

The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 5

Abbots Langley Gardening Society April 2014


pril has been a busy month for the ALGS members, not only in our gardens but social and Village events too. The Spring Show was a great event as usual. The wonderful aroma hit you as you entered Henderson Hall and was only matched by the perfect blooms on show along with the baking, pictures and homewares. Then came the quiz and even though we had fewer numbers this time a good time was had by all. The BBQ breakfast at the depot was busy again too. Our talk on Biodiversity in the Churchyard by David Curry was quite an eye opener. Our Churches only started to surround the grave yard with a wall from the 8th century and now there are around 20,000 of them. They are called ”God’s Acre” after the poem by Longfellow in 1842 however they come in all sizes as David told us that St Peters Church in St Albans has 2 ½ acres. They are a wonderful place for a geologist

as the grave stones are made from such a variety of stones such as York stone, Italian marble, Scottish and Cornish granite. The lichens that grow on the grave stones can be studied to show how clean the air is as certain lichens only grow in fresh air. Trees are so connected to Churches that some even have a carving of “The Green Man” in them which is to show the spirit of the forest. Yews are especially associated with Churchyards and none more than the Fortingall Yew in Scotland which is over 2,000 years old. David talked about how many of our native trees are being attacked by various insects, fungi and even squirrels that chew off the bark. Churchyards are an oasis for wildlife. St Albans Abbey have put up swift nesting boxes and now have a peregrine falcon looking to nest as the swifts will be a nice little larder for them. They already have peregrines at Chichester,

PAGE 6 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Fortingall Yew Norwich, Nottingham and Derby Cathedrals. The RSPB are even having special days called Date With Nature to let people see the birds for themselves. The Churches themselves have a Cherishing Churchyards Week in June. Moths, bats, birds and all kinds of creatures thrive in our Churchyards and if a corner of grass is left uncut, wild flowers miraculously appear and long may it remain that way so that we can all have an opportunity to learn more about the biodiversity in a Churchyard. You are missing out on great entertainment and lovely village social events by not joining us. It only costs £2 to attend for an evening at the Manor House Sports Club but better still, only £5 for all year

so here is a list of some of the events that you can enjoy.

May 15th Orchids by Roy Barrows. Plant hunter and Orchid importer. May 16th-19th Travel Club Chairmans tour - The Welsh Odyssey. (That’s where we are going not the Chairman) June 14th Carnival Stall If you have any plants we will gratefully accept them for our stall. Hope to see you there. Pam Cotton


Abbots Langley Carnival

Poetry Pleases

ften people say that they do not know any poetry but it is always surprising how many rhyming phrases are tucked away in our brains and are remembered when we hear a line quoted. This fact became obvious when we had an afternoon of favourite poems. I was surprised to find fourteen of us assembled and some had even come with a poem. Having previously asked at the Tuesday coffee morning about favourite poems I had then found these by dipping into my books and searching the internet. The book dipping was most enjoyable but the computer was quicker! We ranged through the centuries beginning with a poetess of ancient Greece to Shakespeare’s lines on winter, Browning on spring, and on through the sad lines of The Highwayman by Alfred Noyes, to two cautionary tales, one by Edward Lear of the lying Matilda and the other about the Spider and the Fly. Enid suddenly asked who could remember the Owl and the Pussycat and it seemed everybody could,

as we said it together with hardly a hesitation. Lewis Carroll’s Jabberwocky was recited from memory and our Welsh lady read, with the appropriate accent, Eli Jenkins prayer from Under Milk Wood by Dylan Thomas. It was a very varied afternoon which left me with many rhyming lines in my head. Recently AgeUK began a series of ten weekly visits on health and exercise for the elderly, which is being appreciated by a number of our residents. We meet at 10.30 on Thursday mornings at 11 Greenways (Abbeyfield). If you are interested in joining us please come along! The new ground floor suites are finished and so are the re-located kitchen, the enlarged dining room and the new laundry room. So when all is neat and tidy, and the builders and the skip have gone we plan to have an Open Day for people to look around. For any information about Abbeyfield at 11, Greenways please phone Jan on 01923 674177 or Marcus on 01923 334387. Kathleen Charles


Saturday 14th June

t’s never too soon to start thinking about summer and certainly not when you’ve got the Abbots Langley Carnival to prepare for. The Watford Lions and a committee of volunteers start the planning in January so that the event, one of the largest in Hertfordshire, goes off smoothly. So what’s planned for this year? Well our main attraction this year is a Mountain Bike Aerial Display team. Team MAD has the UK's top riders, including former World and British Champions, who will amaze you with jumps, spins, hops, balancing skills and tricks, accompanied by their own slick commentator. We also have dance displays by local groups (Aviv and Hot & Bothered), Majorettes, Harpenden Pipe Band, Abbots Langley School Choir, a dog show, dog agility display, stalls selling just about everything, clowns, Punch & Judy, bouncy castles, climbing wall, trampoline, go-karts, shooting , plate smashing and all the fun of the fair. The event is sponsored by Abbots Langley Parish Council and M.K.Ginder & Sons. All money raised by the Watford Lions at this event goes to local charities and good causes. Why not be part of it and: • Enter a float in the parade (on a lorry or just a group walking float): email

• Run a stall and make some money for your charity, community group or just for you: email stalls@ • Enter your pampered pooch in the dog show email • Volunteer your services either as part of the committee or stewarding on the day: email info@ Or just add the date to your diary, Saturday 14th June 2014 and come along and enjoy a fun day out. The carnival brochure will be put through your door at the beginning of June. Please do support the advertisers and tell them where you saw their advert.

Mountain Bike Display

The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 7

Ecumenism is Alive and Well E

aster was a great opportunity for the Churches of Abbots Langley to do things together and show that ecumenism is very much alive and well in Abbots Langley. On Good Friday people from St Pauls' Langleybury, the Baptist Church at School Mead, St Lawrence Abbots Langley, the Church of the Ascension Bedmond, St Saviours Church in The Crescent and the Methodist Church in the centre of the village all walked together from St Pauls Langleybury to the Methodist Church. The short act of worship outside each church (except Bedmond) consisted of a reading, a prayer and a hymn. The end point was the Methodist Church where the Revd. Dr Jo Spreadbury said a few words at the foot of the wooden cross, that had been carried all along the route, before everyone was invited inside for refreshments including hot cross buns. On Easter Sunday worship took

About to set off for St Albans on Easter Monday place in the all churches but then on Easter Monday there was another chance for people from different denominations to get together. This time a group of 60 people left St Lawrence Abbots to walk, not just around the village but across the fields to St Albans Abbey. The youngest member

to make the walk was Aston Higgs aged 6. There were several older members who were three score and ten. All made it safely over there to have a picnic lunch in the orchard and then some walked back too clocking up nearly 11 miles for the round trip. To help the





PAGE 8 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

pilgrims a breakfast of beans, tomatoes, bacon and sausage was provided before they left and once they go back a welcome cup of tea followed by shepherd's pie and crumble. Photos by Eve Durtnall

To advertise in The Villager, telephone Julie on 01923 270160 Ken Hodson Computer Hardware and Software Repairs

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In preparation for Palm Sunday the Mothers Union gathered to make palm crosses. Plenty of willing hands made light work and they got the job completed in no time. The crosses were handed out at the service on Kitters Green where all the churches in Abbots Langley came together. Thoughts went back to Palm Sunday last year when snow was on

the ground. The donkey that was missing last year due to the slippery conditions was very much centre stage this year. At one point he was also joined by a lamb. The lamb did not make the walk all the way from Bedmond but it was there as an extra special treat for those going to the Palm Sunday service at St Lawrence.

Preparing the Easter Garden at St Lawrence

The Watford Organ & Keyboard Club Easy listening music played by professional electronic organist on 1st Wednesday of each month at 7.30pm Henderson Hall doors open at 7pm Visitors ÂŁ7.50

Palm cross preparations


Easter Surprise for Carers

t the Abbots Langley Carers Network Coffee Morning in April members were delighted to receive Easter Eggs. This was a lovely surprise and was made possible by a generous donation from Budgens in the High Street. Abbots Langley Carers Network meets at the Methodist Church Hall in Langley Road on the last Wednesday of every month

between 10.30am to 12 noon. If you know of a Carer who would welcome a short break and a chat with similar situated people please tell them about our Coffee Mornings. We would like to express our thanks to the Manager of Budgens who supplied us with such lovely gifts.

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Email: The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 9

Abbots Langley Gardening Society Spring Show April 2014


think everyone I have spoken to said what a lovely Spring Show we had this year. I cannot believe that there were so many daffodils, the colour yellow was everywhere and the perfume hit visitors as they came into the Henderson Hall. The photographs were excellent and some very unusal photos too. A big congratulations to all the members who took part and we were pleased to see several new faces entering. But, yes a big but, where were all our children and grandchildren? Have they really grown too big to take part? I know I am one of those at fault not pursuading my grandchildren to enter so I plead guilty as charged. I do hope that you will encourage them to enter the Autumn show. Congratulations to the winners - Carol showed an amazing vase of 12 Avalanche multi headed narcussus with a wonderful perfume and she received an extra award from our judge Stafford for her outstanding exhibit. Well done Carol! Carol also showed a lovely vase of mixed flowers of different colours with an individual list with the names on for you to read.

Doreen’s plate of shallots won the vegetable classes. All my shallots were shooting so I expect she kept hers in the fridge to stop them producing the new shoots. Brenda must have been working day and evenings to produce her beautiful cushion in many lilac and purple shades. We owe her a thank you for giving us a donation for the raffle of a cushion with an Easter theme. Chairman

Saturday 17th May 10.00am - 12.00pm


want to buy specialist narcussus then look on the websites of RA Scamp (www. ), T Walker ( or J Parkers ( c-v/daffodils_narcissi ). They have beautiful illustrations of the flower heads which should help you in showing your daffs in the correct divisions next year. Jane Lay

Useful Telephone Numbers

Annual Plant Sale nnual Plant Sale by the Abbots Langley Flower Arrangement society at the Henderson

Chris won with his tasty looking brown bread rolls. He must be an expert by now as he cooks bread every week. It was wonderful when the two children who won their trophies were children with trophies donated by or in memory of their grandparents – Sophie’s grandfather Dennis Hubbard and Paige her grandparents Yvonne and John. May I add that if you

Hall, High Street, Abbots Langley. Plants, cakes, bric-a-brac and refreshments.

Abandoned Vehicles

01923 776611

Anti-social behaviour

01923 776611 Blocked sewers

0845 9200800 Dead animals

01923 471320 Litter

01923 776611 Missed wheelie bin/ recycling

01923 776611

(road killed)

Noise complaints

Dog fouling removal

Overgrown Hedges

Faulty traffic lights

Pest Control

Faulty street lights

Potholes in road

Fly posting

Stray Dogs

Fly tipping




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01923 471320 01923 776611 01923 776611 01923 776611 PAGE 10 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Grass cutting

01923 776611 01923 776611 01923 776611

0300 123 4047 01923 776611 01923 776611 0800 587 0548

Results Best in Show in classes Daffodils:The Gissing Cup Mrs Carol Gissing For her vase of 12 Avalanche highly perfumed narcissus Cut flowers & other flowering plants:Valerie Hankin Cup Mrs Carol Gissing For her mixed vase of flowers Fruit and Vegetables:Chairman’s glass bowl Mrs Doreen Higgs For her plate of shallots Handicraft and Photography:Goggins Cup Mrs Brenda Verge For her beautiful cushion Household:Secretary’s Cup Mr Chris Bromwich For his tasty brown bread rolls

Some cup winners


Young exhibitors 8 – 12 years:Dennis Hubbard Memorial Sophie Hudson for her tasty crunchy peanut cookies

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Winning Handicrafts

Young exhibitors 4 – 7 years:Merry Cup Paige Caton-Merry For her excellent photo of her dog at play

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The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 11

Bedmond WI

verner Mark Award

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e had a good attendance at our April meeting. During the business we were told of the success of our spring fair where we made a good profit. Six members went to the group meeting in Abbots Langley. The speaker was Angela Collins, a very funny puppet lady who had been our speaker last December. Rosemary’s doll won the competition. We were asked to nominate names for the committee. Then our speaker, Pamela Sanderson was introduced. She told us in detail about

year old man was arrested for driving whilst unfit (drugs) and street bailed at the hospital while he continued to receive medical treatment.

her work as a clerk at the Old Bailey. It was obviously a very demanding job. She had brought some colleagues with her and after the talk a mock trial was arranged. Some members were chosen to be the judge and jury. It was a very interesting meeting. Our annual meeting is on May 9th and all visitors will be welcome. Chris Ballard

Tracey Middleton, Frances Stickley, Gary Lewis

visits to school. They also praised the excellent work of their clerk Tracey Middleton who had produced much of the documentation required. Well done to all.

ral Election Hustings at ings Langley School SPECIALIST PILATES STUDIO Photo by Joy Mann

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orth date was hes gley be our the the the for ead

TheRecent Life and Times Incidents of Major George Police Helicopter Aids Ranken Arrest RE Arson to

Run certified teachers with of constituency. The Anbyencouraging number 20 years experience people attended and put Conservative, Labour and local over Liberal Democrat candidates their questions to Ayfer Orhan, swiftly accepted the invitation Richard Grayson and Mike to take part in a hustings at Penning. BrandLangley new, fully equipped pilates studio conveniently By general consent, located it was a Kings School on April close to Bovingdon, Chipperfield Village and Kings Langley. event This 2 welcoming 7th. Tand h e spacious s c h o ostudio l ’ s offers useful and civilised both 1:1 sessions, studio which covered a wide range Headteacher, Mr Gary Lewis, sessions (3:1) and mat work classes to people of all ages and abilities.of met all the criteria for chairing issues. It would have been such eventimpartiality and encouraging torelease havework seen Yogaan classes and fascial stretch/integrative soft-tissue substantial also availableeexperience in some young people present handling situations which even though only a few would might become rather lively. Heand have been eligible to vote. For more information booking please contact Churches Together hopes to readily accepted task of on 01442 Thethe Pilates Team 834 672 c o The n dStudio, u c t iGreinan n g Farm, a n Tower “ AHill, n yChipperfield, organise occasional open Kingsthe Langley, Herts WD4 9LU Questions?” style of forum and meeting when issues of general Tel: 01442 834672 made sure that a brisk pace was public interest can be aired.. maintained.

You may recollect on Good Friday (2nd April), late at night, around 11.25pm, a police helicopter and lots of sirens in Between 9pm on Tuesday 16th the village. Hertfordshire Police received a March and 4am on Wednesday call at around 11.15pm regarding 17th March, offenders gained entry to vehicles parked on the a Road TrafficAcollision between talk by Roy Duffin a purple Ford Focus, a silver slip road to the canal in Link Road Saturday 17th May, to release the handbrake and allow Honda Civic and a Mazda Xedos on Station Road where 7.30one pmof the the cars to roll down to the canal drivers left his vehicle and madeHall bank. Two of the vehicles, a white St Lawrence Church Toyota Hiace and a blue Skoda off from theAbbots scene. He was located Langley, WD5 0AS at Railway Terrace by the police Felicia were set alight whilst a helicopter who directed officers Black Nissan Micra, a Beige Ford Tickets: £5.00 per included) and a silver Honda Civic on the ground. Hehead was (refreshments detained Granada available ChurchThe Office 261795) were damaged. and takenfrom to the hospital. 36(01923 or at the door on the night.

Cars The last Officer killed atParked the Siege of Sebastopol, 1856

Coffee Mornings

Large enough to cope small enough to care


Providing quality home care tochocolate the community sinceor1994 coffee morning is held also on offer, fruit on the 1st Wednesday juice, and biscuits. We are Homecare enables people to have a choice to remain at home with of every month at the a church which believes in practical support. Our trained care workers can help you with the Tin Church in Bedmond from using traded as tasks that you are struggling withfairly or unable to goods do. 10am to 12 noon. much as possible so all that We willTuesday visit you througout in your own home so that we can assess your Every you drink or eat will have together we can create a bespoke service especially theneeds year,and come for a coffee and been produced by fair trade. for you a chat in St Lawrence Church Everyone is welcome to We canbetween provide you with care package or you can use anytime 10.15 ama private attend. your direct payments or individual budgets to fund your care. and 12.15 pm. Tea and hot Please ring 01923 269877 or email

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n November 2014 St Paul’s Church Langleybury (WD4 8QQ) celebrates the 150th anniversary of the consecration of the Church Building. The present community of St Paul’s Langleybury is marking this special year with a series of services, talks, exhibitions, concerts and other events. One of the highlights of the year is an anniversary Flower Festival which will run throughout the weekend of 20th – 22nd June. The theme of the Flower Festival is “1864” which aims to bring to life the year the church was built in flowers! Contributors from the local community, Churches in Abbots Langley and across Watford, St Albans Abbey, and St Paul’s Church and School will create floral tributes to the events, politics, art, music, literature and notable names from the year 1864. As you explore the displays you will be given a shapshot of the births, deaths, publications, scientific discoveries, business, sport and industry of the year. Refreshments will be served each day and there will be music, stalls to browse (including home produce and home grown plants), plenty of activity and areas for quiet reflection

including a memorial tree for visitors to remember loved ones, and all those who over the years have contributed to this local community. Opening Times and special events each day:

Friday 20th June: 11am – 3pm 8pm, Organ Recital given by Fr Neil Kelley, Rector of Bushey Saturday 21st June: 10am – 4pm 2pm, recital given by the choir of St Paul’s VA Primary School Sunday 22nd June: 12noon – 4pm

In the 1950’s a Green Line bus conductor described St Paul’s Church and Church Yard as ‘Paradise Corner.’ Come and enjoy a little bit of ‘paradise.’ For more information about St Paul’s Church and anniversary events please see the Church’s website www. or Facebook page.


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The cut off date for the next issue is

Friday 23rd May

Advice Column From Your Local CAB I have heard in the news about going through assessments to obtain my ESA benefit. What are these and what should I expect? No one knows when an accident or ill-health could have a dramatic impact on their life. Last year the Government added an extra step to the process for applying for sickness and disability support. The Work Capability Assessment (WCA) process, which has come under fire for lengthy and unfair decisions since it was introduced in 2008, will now include an extra step before sick and disabled people can access financial support through Employment Support Allowance (ESA). If your sickness or disability prevents you from working, then you could be entitled to ESA to help you manage

your day to day living costs. Since October last year, the Government introduced a new 'mandatory reconsideration' phase to ESA. This extra step in the process takes place after you receive a decision on your initial application for support and you can't lodge an appeal until it is completed. It is supposed to take about two weeks to go through the reconsideration period but unfortunately some of our clients have said it can take much longer than this. You won’t be able to claim ESA during the reconsideration phase but you can apply for Jobseekers Allowance. We're concerned that some people will find this difficult and be left with no financial support – leading to people in already trying circumstances being subjected to even more anxiety.

If you're in this situation then you should go to your local Citizens Advice Bureau for help on how to manage your finances and make sure your application is dealt with fairly and promptly. Once the reconsideration process has taken place, you may well get a positive decision about your application. If you are unhappy with the decision, you can appeal. Appealing against a decision can seem like a daunting prospect but advisers in your local Citizens Advice Bureau can help you to deal with this.

Abbots Langley CAB The Old Stables St Lawrence's Vicarage High Street Abbots Langley Three Rivers Residents:

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The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 13

French Leave by Voyager Comparisons with life in France from a former resident

You kip, they'll vote . . . J

ean-François is a baker in a seaside town on the northern shore of the bay of Biscay. I sometimes wonder why anyone chooses this as a career. It’s more a way of life than a job, with crippling hours, most of which are spent standing up. His is the largest bakery of three in a town with a popluation of about 1,400 in winter, rocketing to 20,000+ during the summer season. This is typical of Breton coastal towns and is a real headache for the local authority, because it has to provide services for all the visitors, even if the busy season only lasts about eight weeks. (If you visit France regularly and have wondered what the “taxe de séjour” on your hotel or camping bill is, it funds those services.) A bruising job, indeed. J-F starts just after midnight six days a week, for eight months of the year, closing during the winter months. He has a greyish pallour, almost that

of the prison house, from long hours under artificial light aided and abetted by constant exposure to flour. He is coming up for sixty and the lined face shows that time and the furnace have taken their toll. I have only recently got to know him and while he’s a nice enough chap, he is, in the words of the song, a man of constant sorrow, notwithstanding a charming and seemingly more optimistic younger wife, and a couple of very agreable kids. He wasn’t always a baker, he is at pains to tell me, but a cheating business partner in an earlier life left him no choice but to retrain. Being from a generation not used to resting on its laurels (pronounced bottom) he chose baking because it seemed like a good bet for the 15 years up to retirement, for the love affair of the French with their baguette continues undiminished. Now he regrets it. Why? Well, it’s the economy stupid. In the

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years since our bonus-loving bankers screwed the world economy and most of us with it, he has seen his profitability drop dramatically. In the first five weeks of his current baking season, turnover fell by about 20,000€, which follows on a similar drop in 2013. He blames the government, though I’m not sure how much better it really was under Mr. Sarkozy. However, with official figures showing unemployment nudging 3.5 million, coupled with consistently poor economic results and steadily rising prices (which toxic cocktail is dutifully drip fed by the telly) fewer people are going on holiday. As our doomladen relationship has evolved another looming catastrophe has descended upon his already bowed shoulders: the possible success of Marine Le Pen’s reformed and reforming Front National. His concern is less about their policies, which I have the impression don’t bother him too much, rather the social catastrophe that he believes will engulf la belle F if they sweep the board. There is, of course, a parallel with the rise of UKIP in the UK, with whom Ms. Le Pen recently proposed an alliance. There are clearly many people who are disenchanted by the EU and, in particular, overregulation, the free movement of labour and immigration. And they are equally disenchanted with a political class that chooses to ignore their point of view. 10 years ago, the French voted against the new EU constitution in the referendum that cost the then PM, JeanPierre Raffarin, his job. (As soon as he was entrusted by Chirac with delivering a “yes” vote, he was a condemned man, much as M. Ayrault has been sacrificed at least in part to the fantasies of his boss M. Hollande.) What happened ? The political class forged on, found a way round it and ignored the people. I was struck this month during a visit to the UK how the UKIP band wagon has rolled on since my last visit in November. It is always difficult to discern the extent to which media hype is inflating its importance, but it is very clear that Mr. Farage, like Ms. Le Pen, is touching a chord with a lot of people. As I write this, Mr. Farage is under further

attack about racist remarks by some of his candidates— reading these, one is forced to wonder which planet these people were born on—and bizarrely in a spat with Ms. Le Pen about anti-semitism in her Front National. But the Front National did well in the recent local elections and they look set to do well in the European elections too. Though Ms. Le Pen is avowedly anti-immigration and anti the Schengen accords, which permit the free movement of labour, she has, at least on paper, moved her party away from the overtly fascist and anti-semitic views of the old Front National of her father. Now, regardless of whether you believe in the leopard’s ability to change its spots, it’s clear that at least some of the messages resonate with a lot of ordinary people, who are not necessarily either racist or antisemitic (though the swelling numbers will undoubtedly include some who are). The response of the political class here is the standard reflex of unreasoning revulsion at the NF and all it stands for, apparently having failed to recognise that it and the world have moved on a bit. No one has responded to the detailed policies on its website, which is the only way to counter her arguments and those of Mr. Farage (more effectively than Nick Clegg did). So a significant proportion of the population feels sufficiently abandoned by mainstream politicians, who are sleeping at the wheel. It is likely that unless they wake up and demolish the Front’s arguments one by one, it will make significant gains in the Europeans. You kip, they’ll vote. So to return to Jean-François, his concern is not so much the policies, rather that the left will take to the streets and cause social chaos, with all the social disruption that implies, which he fears is likely to reduce the number of tourists still further and thus his turnover and profitability. As I predicted in March, France has a new government, led by the former interior minister, Manuel Valls. Mr. Valls is very able, but will he effectively counter the FN’s arguments and bring back voters to the mainstream? Like most of the issues on his desk, it will not be easy.

The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 15

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All Ready for Glorious Hospice Garden Party P

imms, cream teas, stalls-a-plenty, live music and children’s entertainment will be on offer at the annual Hospice of St Francis Garden Party, taking place in the beautiful grounds of Ashridge House on Sunday 1 June, 1-5pm. The Garden Party, sponsored by international law firm D A C Beachcroft and last year attended by more than 3,000 people, is a chance to show support for your local Hospice and help it to raise much needed funds. The Berkhamsted based charity needs to raise £4.7 million annually to help fund the care it provides for people living with life-shortening illnesses in Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire. At this year’s Garden Party there will be live music in the garden from popular jazz quartet, the Jolly Jazzers with the choice of lunch from the BBQ on the terrace or afternoon teas in the historic Dining Room. The popular Pimms stall will be well stocked out on the lawns whilst the bar will offer locally brewed beers inside the beautiful Wyatt Room. There will be a wide variety of quality stalls with many local suppliers and businesses offering a tempting array of speciality food & drink, gifts and handmade craft items, jewellery, fashion and home accessories, summer bedding and herbaceous plants. There’s also plenty to entertain small people including the delights of a traditional flea circus, Punch and Judy, Face Painting from Tiny Acorns, ice cream and a circus skills workshop. Sarah Adjer, Community Fundraiser, at The Hospice of St Francis, comments, “The Hospice Garden Party is a fantastic afternoon out for all the family and is our biggest community event of the year that raises important funds as well as awareness of our vital work. “It offers the perfect way to spend a relaxing afternoon wandering around the stalls and exploring the beautiful gardens of Ashridge House before enjoying afternoon tea or a glass of Pimms and soaking up the atmosphere.” Dolores Kelly, Marketing

Manager of Ashridge House adds, “We are delighted to welcome back The Hospice of St Francis for its annual Garden Party and look forward to welcoming local people to enjoy the beautiful gardens and parkland of Ashridge. This year we’ve increased the number of parking spaces available to help keep traffic moving through the Estate and are ready to welcome the crowds.” Laurence Markham of DAC Beachcroft, sponsors of the event, added, “A family member of one of our staff recently experienced the care the Hospice provides. The Firm wanted to show our appreciation by contributing towards this fantastic day out. We wish the event every success and hope it raises a significant sum to fund the work of this wonderful organisation.” Tickets to the Garden Party are available to buy in advance from Hospice Love to Give shops and Returned To Glory priced at £5 each for adults or on the day at £6. Children under 16 are free. For further information visit gardenparty or call 01442 869555.

PAGE 20 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Crowds at Ashridge in 2013

Art Exhibition O

n Wednesday 23rd April Councillor Brenda Kersey officially opened a display of paintings at Margaret House Care Home, produced by resident artist Robin Southwood. The idea for a gallery opening came about as a way of thanking Robin for the beautiful paintings which decorate the Home. Margaret House in Parsonage Close is part of not for profit organisation Quantum Care. Artist Robin has been a resident at the care home for many years, however in 2010 Robin, his family and Quantum Care’s facilities team initiated a project to design and build a purpose built potting shed within the grounds of the Home so that Robin had his own space to paint. The Home is now adorned with his beautiful paintings, and so the staff and residents of Margaret House thought that a gallery evening would be a fitting way to acknowledge Robin’s work, and to share his paintings with the local community. Coni Anang, Home

Manager of Margaret House said “We are very lucky to have such a talented artist here at Margaret House, and look forward to sharing these beautiful paintings with the local community.” Robin, now aged 92, has been painting for 90 years, he loves painting from photos and postcards using oils. Painting is just a hobby for Robin as during his working life he was the Groundsman at Cassiobury Park and the Met Police Sports Club in Bushey. He also has a passion for writing poetry which was available for everyone to read. Not all his paintings are on display as there are too many to show and not enough room for them all. Following the official opening of the exhibition, the paintings will be kept on display for a further couple of weeks so please feel free to visit the Home to see the paintings for yourself - for further information about the display please contact Margaret House on 01923 261190 or email Margaret@

Simply the Best! B

JAcademy students attended a tournament in Bracknell on Sunday 29th March, TCGB National Championships 2014 bringing in the Silverware from all the 12 students who took part. Gold from Jake, Liam, Jennifer and Charles. Silver from Rhianna, Maria and Jason, bronze from Dale and Robert who attended his first tournament. Once again this gave all the students valuable experience and meeting other fighters from around the country. They also attended the first ever tournament held in Wales on Sunday 6th April Welsh Open 2014. BJAcademy students were Simply the Best, as a team we were ranked 10th place from 40 other teams. Jennifer & Charles Ballentine and Liam Johnson brought in Gold; Rhianna and Dale bringing in Silver and bronze from Jake. Nikhil Patel and Jamie Girling lost out in this tournament but as Master Johnson says it all about the experience and learning from attending

competitions so that you better yourselves. What a fantastic start to this year, they have already attended four tournaments and these students have gained tremendous experiences. Performing at their highest level and being proud of themselves, training hard and giving their all at these tournaments, well done to all of them. The students would like to thank the Seniors and Master Johnson for all their support and training and also their parents for supporting them. Master Brima Johnson 7th Dan head of BJAcademy said he was proud of everyone. These matches were tough, but they all fought and gained valuable experience. The BJAacademy is asking for sponsorship, to enable them to compete in further international competitions. Please contact Master Johnson.(07956 834773) if you are able to help. Yamini (Treasurer BJ Academy)

TCGB National Championships 2014, Bracknell

Robin Southwood opens the art Exhibition with Cllr Brenda Kersey

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01923 291522 The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 21

Abbots Langley Players Chosen for Royal Shakespeare Company’s Open Stages project • ALP one of fewer than 100 groups across the country picked for prestigious project • Announcement the start of a year-long project ahead of outdoor production in April 2015 • Centrepiece of project to be working Jacobean herb garden, donated to the village post-production The Abbots Langley Players will be reviving its production of Peter Whelan’s The Herbal Bed for a project that the whole village community can both contribute to and benefit from. The production, which will be staged in April 2015, is part of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Open Stages – the UK’s biggest amateur theatre project. ALP’s pitch to the RSC was to involve as many local people and community groups as possible, making

the production an effort that would highlight the depth and diversity of cultural activity in the village and raise the profile of Abbots Langley as a whole. One of the main features of the project will be the growth and use of a working Jacobean herb garden for a set during the production. After show week, the garden will be donated to Abbots Langley to be used as a communal resource by the village. Colette Holmes, who will be directing the project, said: “We are thrilled to be one of fewer than 100 groups taking part in this prestigious RSC project. We are now keen to hear from village groups or individuals that might like to be involved in the production – the more the merrier. “Although we have come up with some concepts for how

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PAGE 22 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

various village societies could take part, we’d love to hear from anyone who has ideas on how to get more participation in the project; we’re happy to take suggestions and collaborate to make sure that as many people are involved as possible.” The production will be

staged outdoors in the village, though the exact location is yet to be confirmed. If anyone would like more details about the project, they can visit the ALP’s website at www. or email the society at abbotsplayers@

New Family Room at Bedmond School B

edmond School welcomed lots of visitors to their official opening of the new Family Room. All the children were able to witness the ceremony with Head teacher Emma Woollon leading the proceedings. Emma explained to the audience that having a family room was a dream when she started at the school but she strongly believed that dreams can be achieved. She thanked everyone involved in helping this dream come true: The Robert McAlpine Foundation; Paul Goggins; Watford Lions; Magnet; Three Villages Children’s Centre and also to the families of the children at the school who have helped to raise funds through various activities. Emma said “Today you bear

witness to the celebration of a room that is a product of a community working together. Of this we should all be proud. Thank you all for your contributions, our new room will become a valuable addition to our school and what we can provide and will, I am sure, continue to be appreciated for generations to come.” Reverend David Warner then blessed the room and Helen Richardson cut the opening ribbon before the children sang “Living and Learning” The new Family Room will be used for a breakfast club, a space for meetings, parents and carer workshops, play sessions a crèche and so much more.

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The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 23

Top Medals for Leventis Taekwondo L

eventis Taekwondo are celebrating success after winning a haul of medals at the National Championships in Bracknell. On 29th March, a group of LTKD students, namely Eve Leventis Taylor, aged 9; Amelio Luiso, aged 9; Brendan O’Callaghan, aged 48; Alex Wong, aged 9; Nikos Joannides, aged 9; Luker Mercer, aged 9; Joshua Mercer, aged 7 and Emma O’Callaghan aged 12 won 3 golds, 1 silver and 2 bronzes respectively. They competed in poomsae – a series of movements which are memorised and showcase specific techniques, timing and control. Gavin Owen, aged 41, won a bronze medal in the Kirougi – full contact sparring as seen in the Olympics. Leventis Taekwondo is registered with British Taekwondo and is part of the Chung Do Kwan under the official governing body in Kukkiwon, South Korea. LTKD incorporate all aspects

of traditional taekwondo as well as more modern sport taekwondo as they are all equally important to creating a balance within the training and within the student. LTKD

PAGE 24 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

run classes on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays at Leavesden Green Community Hub and Divine Saviour School. The club is closely affiliated with Master

Michael King who teaches every Thursday at West Herts College. For more info, contact Lorraine Leventis on 07930 368240 or email

The Centralian Players Present 'Duets' F

our short comedies played by four sets of exceptional actors, or ‘Duets’. The Centralian Players will perform their latest production, Duets, at Henderson Hall, Abbots Langley, from Thursday 22nd to Saturday 24th May 2014. A very funny comedy by the author of Broadway smash End of the Rainbow and the West End hit Glorious! Four sets of characters, four crucial moments. Jonathon and Wendy are on a blind date and hoping to get it right this time even though they’ve never got it right before; Barrie is not really interested in women but Janet sees that as no reason to stop trying; Shelley and Bobby have decided to holiday in Spain to finalise their divorce whilst drowning in cocktails; Angela is marrying for the third time to the dismay of brother Toby and amidst a barrage of bad omens and a dress resembling a parachute. A gloriously funny examination of the chaotic world of love, relationships and why the grass is never greener. A hilarious tribute to the strength and madness of the human heart. Direction will be provided by Linda Hirst and Wendy Gardner. This will be Linda’s second time as producer after

her successful production of When We Are Married in 2012. Wendy will be repeating her success as director. Wendy produced the last play, Murder Mistaken, and has produced over 30 plays with The Centralians. Duets is an amateur production in association with Samuel French. The Centralians were founded in 1933, making 2014 its 81st year. Having performed in 3 different locations in the group’s history The Centralians have been performing at Henderson Hall in Abbots Langley since 1983. The Centralians perform 3 productions per year, in

January, May and October. The group are always looking for new talent both on and off stage. Please contact the Box Office or a member of the group on the evening of the performance, for more details. We are online (www., on Facebook (The Centralian Players) and on Twitter (@ TheCentralians). LISTINGS INFORMATION DUETS Written by Peter Quilter Directed by Linda Hirst Opening night: Thursday 22nd May 2014 Also showing: Friday 23rd May and Saturday 24th May 2014 Show start time: 7:45pm each day

(Bar opens 7:15pm) Henderson Hall, High Street, Abbots Langley, WD5 0AR Ticket Prices: £7.00 Adults, £5.00 Concessions Box Office 01923 227392 /

Do you have an event you would like publicised? email

or contact us on 01923 270160 we can also add it to our weekly news email The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 25

Tea With Mrs Pankhurst from the Flatpack Theatre


bbots Langley’s Festival of Arts 2014 this June and July will include another slightly unusual theatrical performance from the stable of the Flatpacktheatre company. For this year’s offering the Henderson Hall will be set out as a tea room, with the audience served tea, cake and a time-jump back to the Edwardian era as they take “Tea With Mrs Pankhurst”. This playful and insightful look at the relationship between the indomitable Mrs Emmeline Pankhurst, and Mrs Selina Cooper, an inspiring voice in the Labour and Suffragist movement, is presented in two afternoon and two evening performances. The play is by Ruth Urquhart and James Douglas and was first performed at the Edinburgh Festival in 2003 and has toured (mostly in northern England) and has been performed at the TUC conference. Flatpacktheatre is an amateur production company based in Abbots Langley which has been responsible for a series of somewhat oddball theatre events in recent years. The company name is designed to evoke a sort of pop-up go-anywhere form of theatre. Their first event was a mini drama festival of ten different plays performed in a tent in the Manor House grounds in the 2008 festival. They followed that up in 2009 by staging their own version of “Macbeth” in the same tent in the twilight under the trees

in that park. This production was revived in 2011and taken to the Edinburgh Festival. In a radical change of direction, the company took on a team of 11 seventeen to twenty year old actors to present the hard-hitting, war-questioning, social drama “Bassett” for the Village’s festival in 2012. Again, this was revived and transferred to the Edinburgh Festival in 2013, where the young team’s acting wowed the hard-nosed Edinburgh critics. The company directors, Simon and Wendy Ash found leading such a young, dedicated and dynamic team in the Edinburgh summer a most invigorating experience. Tea With Mrs Pankhurst is performed by a team of six female actors portraying the events and personalities involved in the campaign for universal suffrage and the growing differences and tensions between the Suffragette and Suffragist approaches before becoming lost in the fog of the Great War. Performances in the Henderson Hall are at 3:30pm on the 22nd and 28th June and at 8pm on the 23rd and 27th of June. Tickets are £8 (including Tea). The number of seats are limited due to the tea-room layout, so please book early to avoid disappointment. Bookings taken via 01923 444619 or tickets@flatpacktheatre. or online booking and card payment at www. or facebook Flatpacktheatre.

PAGE 26 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Abbots Langley Flower Arrangement Society April Meeting


ur Chairman Jo Bromwich gave us a demonstration how to use tulips in our arrangements this time of year. There is such a variety of colours and shapes including Frills and Double headed varieties. They were incorporated into arrangements with Roses, Gerbera, Lilly’s and Carnations. For the last

arrangement the flowers were arranged as cats. Our Annual Plant Sale is on May 17th at The Henderson Hall from 10-12.00. Our demonstration is on May 22nd Entitled “Let’s Go GA GA” by Susie Barwick. The Venue is the Manor House (Cricket Club), at 7.00pm for 7.30pm, all visitors welcome at £5.00 at the door.

Bedmond Village Easter Egg Hunt Task Force O


edmond Village Task Force started in 2012 with the Jubilee party and beacon followed last year by the Village Fair which will again be held this year on Saturday 19th July. As well as Carol Services in Bedmond around the Christmas Tree with mince pies and mulled wine for the past two years they have organised two ‘Make Bedmond Beautiful’ tidying

up sessions, hold regular tea parties for the elderly and the recent Egg hunt which was held on Saturday 12th April. The Bedmond Task Force were at the Jigfest in Abbots Langley as they were beneficiaries of some of the money which paid for the Easter Eggs on their Easter Egg Hunt held on 12th April.

n the Saturday before Easter, Bedmond Vilage Task Force held the first Great Bedmond Village Easter Egg Hunt which turned out to be a resounding success. 'Headquarters' was The Sports and Social, Club Toms Lane. This was a family outing. It was the Ark Community Church whose members did such a sterling job in their yellow jackets, helping to usher family groups and overseeing road

crossing at strategic points along the route. The final clue was at the Tin Church. The Task Force were delighted how families turned up in strength of numbers. The aim had been to create an event for all the family and that is what this was. The enormous pile of Easter Eggs all went home with delighted participants. Joy Mann Photo by Emma Woollon

Emma Woollon and Joy Mann photo by Mike Quinton

The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 27

Abbots Langley Festival of the Arts 8th June to 13 July


estival time is here again! Yes, between Sunday 8th June and Sunday 13th July, the twelfth Abbots Langley Festival of the Arts (ALFA) is featuring all manner of performances. Over two dozen different events featuring all types of entertainment are taking place. There will be music in abundance – a jazz quintet and a chance to join in a session of traditional music; our own local orchestra and students from the local school of music; singing (performed by both children and adults). Flowers are featured - in the garden, in a vase, and as the centre of a large display. Poetry read, and plays performed for your enjoyment. There is also the

opportunity to see how clever some people are with display of art and crafts, and even an opportunity to try your hand at making cane weaving! Historians are also catered for with a rare chance to see old maps books and photographs. So - there can be no excuse for your not coming to the festival – there are many, many varied and interesting events to see. Festival brochures, which contain information on all the events and how to book tickets, will be delivered throughout Abbots Langley during the early part of May. For any further information please contact John Sutton email jf.sutton@btinternet. com or telephone 01923 263605.

Programme Information Abbots Langley Library Throughout the festival at library opening times. For local information as well as books and music.

Abbots Langley Art Group (Formerly Friday Art Group) Every Thursday 10.00am to 12 noon Tanners Wood Hall, School Mead Visitors and / or would be members will be most welcome any Thursday morning. during the period of the festival when tea and biscuits will be available. Contact: 01923 261659

Open Garden Sunday 8th June at 2.00 - 5.00pm. The Abbots House, 10 High Street, (Sue & Peter Tomson). A few plants for sale propagated from the garden. Various stalls. No dogs admitted. Home-made teas available. Wheelchair access to some of the garden. Parking in the drive for disabled people only. Please use the free village car park. Tickets: £4.00 (also available at the gate) (accompanied children free). Proceeds donated to the British Red Cross.

Children Singing Thursday June 12th at 2.30 pm St Saviour’s Church, Abbots Langley A concert by local primary school children. Tickets: Free No tickets required. There will be a retiring collection.

Abbots Langley Local History Walk Monday 16th June 2.00pm. Meet at Main Village Car Park. The walk will cover 4 - 41/2 miles. Suitable footwear should be worn as it may be muddy in places. Leader - Derek Sayell. Tickets: No tickets required.

Poetry Corner Tuesday 17th June at 2.30 - 4.30pm. St Saviour’s Parish Hall, The Crescent. An opportunity to read or listen to your selection of poems, prose or very short stories. (We particularly welcome original compositions.) The theme this time is “Remembrance”, (sad or happy). Refreshments will be provided. Tickets: No tickets required.

Hot 5 Jazz Band Tuesday 17th June at 8.00pm. St Lawrence Church. Returning by popular demand! Bruce Boardman who has worked with notables including George Melly, Terry Lightfoot, Kenny Ball and many other traditional jazz performers, brings you a repertoire of music from sources such as Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller, Jelly Roll Morton etc. With a line-up of clarinet, piano, bass, drums and including Mike Cotton on trumpet (notable for his years with Acker Bilk’s Paramount Jazz Band). Tickets: £10.00 in advance or at the door.

PAGE 28 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Abbots Langley Gilbert & Sullivan Society Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday 18th to 21st June at 7.45pm Matinee Saturday at 2.30pm Henderson Hall Will & Art....together and apart! An evening of rarely heard Gilbert and Sullivan, and Sullivan without Gilbert, illustrated with anecdotes and ephemera. Tickets: £12.00; (£10.00 concessions Wednesday evening & Saturday matinee only); 16 and under £5.00 all performances. Obtainable from algss. Box office 07502 426721.

Abbots Langley Gardening Society Thursday 19th June 7.00pm The Abbots House Garden, 10 High Street, (Through the kindness of Sue & Peter Tomson) Social Evening; Cheese and a glass of wine together with a cane weaving workshop. Please order tickets in advance, especially if you wish to take part in the cane weaving workshop extra price to be advised. Tickets: £4.00 (members) for cheese and wine. £5.00 (nonmembers) for cheese and wine. Tickets may be obtained from ALGS Box Office or Jo Bromwich 01923 443758.

Primary Schools Drama Festival One morning performance between 23rd -27th June t.b.c. Henderson Hall Playlets on the theme of “A Book”. Tickets £2, Call 07791328988.

Flatpacktheatre Join us for Tea With Mrs Pankhurst A play by Ruth Urquhart and James Douglas. What better way to spend a June afternoon or evening during the Abbots Langley Festival of Arts! Flatpacktheatre invites you to take tea in the company of Emmeline Pankhurst and Selina Cooper as the growing differences between the Suffragettes and the Suffragists are played out during their campaign to achieve votes for women. Your seat at a table in our pre-Great War tea-room in the Henderson Hall will cost £8, including the tea. Please book early as places are limited. Afternoon performances on: Sunday 22nd and Saturday 28th June at 3:30pm.

Evening performances on: Monday 23rd and Friday 27th June at 8pm. Call 01923 444619 or book online at

St Paul’s Church, Langleybury Flower Festival “1864” (St Paul ‘s is 150 this year.) Friday 20th June at 11.00am to 3.00pm. Saturday 21st June at 10.00am to 4.00pm. Sunday 22nd June at 12.00noon to 4.00pm. Additionally Friday 20th June 8.00pm Organ Recital, given by Mr Christopher Beauchamp. Saturday 21st June 2.00pm Performance by the choir of St Paul ‘s School. Sunday 22nd June 10.00am Festival Service with the Rt Revd Alan Smith, Bishop of St Albans. There will be a small charge for entry to the Flower Festival. Refreshments and light meals will be available throughout. Contact 270634.

Traditional Music Session Friday 20th June , from 8:00pm at the Abbots Langley Cricket Club in the Manor House grounds, Gallows Hill Lane Traditional Music Session Tim Brooks will lead a friendly group of local musicians who together explore the wealth of traditional music from the USA and the British Isles. Bring an instrument and join in, (note: no notation - this is an aural tradition) or just come and listen , while enjoying a summer drink or two. Tickets: No tickets required. Details from Tim at 01923 264536, or

Abbots Langley Flower Arrangement Society Thursday 26th June at 7.30pm (doors open at 7.00pm). Henderson Hall. As part of the festival,Rekha Naidoo will be giving a flower arranging demonstration entitled ‘Inspirations of India’. All arrangements will be raffled at the end of the evening. Entrance free to members - £5 to non-members. Tickets available on the door or from ALPA.

Watford School of Music Monday 30th June at 7.30pm. St Lawrence Church. An interesting and varied programme with chamber groups and soloists. Tickets: £3.00 in advance or at the door.

Abbots Langley Players Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday 2nd - 5th July at 8.00pm. Matinee Saturday at 2.30pm (to be confirmed - please check). Henderson Hall. Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw Directed by Colette Holmes A comedy of manners, a biting satire on class, a sumptuous period piece and an off-beat, quirky love story - Pygmalion is all that and more. When Shaw wrote Pygmalion more than a century ago, no one could have predicted his play would eventually be converted into one of the greatest musicals of our time “My Fair Lady” and an Academy Award winning motion picture. Generations of readers and theatre goers have delighted in Shaw’s story of Professor of phonetics Henry Higgins, who successfully transforms Liza Doolittle, a “draggle-tailed guttersnipe,” into a lady and darling of high society. Tickets £8.00 From Abbots Langley Players Box Office, 0844 804 5354

St Lawrence Church Fete Saturday 5th July from 2.00 to 5.00pm. Vicarage garden. Tickets: No tickets required. Proceeds to local charities.

Abbots Langley Local History Society Saturday 5th July at 10.00am - 4.00pm (Coffee shop ‘til noon). The Methodist Church Hall, Langley Road, WD50EJ. Archive Exhibition

In celebration of the society’s first twenty years Exhibits will include : old maps, vintage photos, books, publications, and a display by “Back to the Front" Abbots Langley’s Great War Commemoration Project. For further information contact : Tickets: Free admission (any small donations gratefully accepted).

Flower Festival Friday 11th July at 10.00am to 5.00pm. Saturday 12th July at 10.00am to 6.00pm. Sunday 13th July at 11.00am to 6.00pm. St Lawrence Church. Theme: “They’ll Never Believe Me” - the world as it was in 1914 Refreshments will be available in the Vicarage garden. Tickets: £2.00 on the door. (Accompanied children free).

Craft Fair Saturday 12th July at 10.00am - 5.30pm. Sunday 13th July at 10.30am - 4.30pm. St Lawrence Church Hall. An opportunity to see Arts & Crafts by people who live in Abbots Langley, including textile skills, woodwork, art, papercraft and many more.... Refreshments will be available in the vicarage garden. Free admission. Donations welcomed - to be shared between Breakspear School, Demand, St Lawrence Church and The Hub. For further information contact Moira Bunting on 01923 262242.

Tower Bell Ringing Sunday 13th July at 900am. St Lawrence Church. Service ringing for ALFA. Tickets: No tickets required.

Songs of Praise Sunday 13th July at 6.30pm. St Saviour’s Church, The Crescent. Familiar hymns and songs with the CTAL choir Tickets: No tickets required

Cheese & Wine Party Sunday 13th July at 7.45pm. St Lawrence Vicarage Garden. Tickets: £4.00 (includes 1st glass of wine). Tickets are also available from the Church Office.

ALPA (Association of Abbots Langley Performing Arts Societies - the umbrella organisation producing the festival) plus a stamped addressed envelope please. Then Post or deliver it to : ALFA Booking Office, Oakdene, 75 Trowley Rise, Abbots Langley, WD5 0LN,

Additional Information

Abbots Langley Orchestra Sunday 20th July at 3.00pm. Programme: Tristan und Isolde: Prelude to Act 3 ... Wagner Violin Concerto opus 53 ... Dvorak Soloist, Ciaran McCabe Symphony no 4, “Tragic” ... Schubert Prelude founded on the Welsh hymn tune “Rhosymedre” ... Vaughan Williams Tickets: £8.00, children free, including interval drinks, (admission by programme on the door).

How to Book Complete the booking form (below or in the programme) which is for some of the events, and enclose it with a cheque payable to

• Concessions; Senior Citizens, UB40s, under 16s - see individual events for details where concessions given. • When ordering, please note that some events are held on more than one day ensure that you book the performances you require. • Most other events not on the booking form are unticketed and do not require booking. • Tickets are also available “on the door” at events. However, availability of seats cannot be guaranteed in this case. • Further copies of this form are available from the Booking Office.

The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 29

Unscrupulous Landlord Double Books Room in Abbots Langley


ox and Box, which Sullivan wrote with F C Burnand, tells the story of a landlord Bouncer who lets out a room to two gentlemen without either one knowing of the other’s existence. However during the course of this short comic opera everything comes to a head. Andy Taylor, fresh from his triumphant performance as Shadbolt at the Palace Theatre in January, plays Bouncer with his tenants being Philip Joslin as Box and David Southorn as Cox. The piece premiered in 1866 and was seen a few times at charity benefits in 1867. Once given a professional production in 1869, it became popular, running for 264 performances and enjoying

many revivals and further charity performances. During the 20th century, it was frequently played by the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company in an abridged version, as a curtain raiser for the shorter Gilbert and Sullivan operas. It has been played by numerous professional and amateur companies throughout the world and continues to be frequently produced. At a recent Buxton Festival it was performed in Japanese! This short piece is part of the Abbots Langley Gilbert & Sullivan’s Society’s summer show which is wittily entitled ‘Will and Art – together and apart’, the Will being Sir William Gilbert and the Art being Sir Arthur Sullivan.

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Auditions have taken place and rehearsals are well underway. Soloists include Jan Taylor, Annie Rycroft, Laura Ransome, Mandy Carr, Jenny Carr, Colin Walker, Brenda Southorn, Melanie Riseam, Geoffrey Farrar and David Sutherland. Peter Joslin, our Chairman’s father, will be bringing his expertise to the show and once again the youthful performers will be Ellie Williams and Harvey Southorn. The musical content of the rest of the programme consists of popular chorus numbers and ensemble pieces from The Gondoliers, Pirates of Penzance, Iolanthe and less well known items from Utopia Ltd and the Grand Duke written by Gilbert and Sullivan together. However

there will also be songs that Sullivan wrote with other lyricists from The Rose of Persia, The Foresters and Ivanhoe. In addition Sullivan wrote music for church and many part songs and we are including O Israel (written when he was only 15) which will be sung by Laura Ransome and the two children and the beautiful song ‘The Long Day Closes’ This production has a wealth of variety in the music from comic to solemn, from ethereal to choruses that will raise the roof. ‘Will and Art’ will be performed from June 18th – 21st at Henderson Hall. Tickets are obtainable from tel : 07502 426721

Professional balloon decorating at great prices!

Proud Member of NABAS

Special Occasion Balloons

01923 634160 PAGE 30 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

It is an old Saying “A dog is a man’s best friend” A

family pet, be it horse, dog, cat, hamster or canary, they all fill the bill and give pleasure and all appreciate a kind word and respond accordingly. A horse will neigh, a dog will wag its tail, a cat will purr, a hamster will squeak and a canary will tweet. They all seem to understand. It is nice to have someone to talk to and for the ladies with all breeds, shades and sizes with not the least embarrassment calling their charges, “Sweetie” and “Darling”, telling them “Mummy won’t be long.”, must be, I am sure, reassuring. It is over eighty years ago I recall that my Mother and Father had our black Labrador, “Sambo”. My father used to take him for his last walk of the night from our Manor Cottage and past Causeway House, the home of a distinguished village lady Mrs Neish. It seems my father had taken off his gaiters for comfort and put on his soft plimsoles. Of course no road lights in those days. The tale got round that the ghost of the long departed Causeway House mad chambermaid was walking the High Street again. It was in fact the whites of my father’s long johns below his dark breeches and moving silently up the path. The lady on the other side near Overy House (now the surgery) ran up the road, convinced of what she had seen. I am sure everyone has a

by Billy Crush

happy tale about their special pet. Many, many years later, married and living in Tibbs Hill Road, I had bought for company for Gwen and son, John, a white poodle puppy registered with the kennel club and called Village Belle, but she always answered to the name Sally. She became a wonderful pet. For many years we took her on holiday; she loved to ride in the motor and she had so many funny ways. Getting her lead off the hook she would run to the door all excited. Getting her coat out of the drawer she knew and she would roll over. She did not like cigarette smoke and on seeing a match box she would screw up her face and keep sneezing. One day we were in the kitchen, Sally came out sneezing and spitting, we said, “Whatever is the matter?” It seems a lump of coal had come out of the fire onto the hearth. She saved the house. Sally hated black cats. The young children next door use to tease her at the fence, but strange as it may seem, a cat from the bottom of our garden, Smokey, would come and sit with Sally on the patio, walk up our back step into the kitchen to sample Sally’s dish out again. She never moved. I seem to be rambling on a bit but it is nice to talk to someone who will listen and for people with pets, as they understand because a pet does just that.

Sally with Smokey A dear lady stopped me in Budgens the other day, she said, “I know you, you’re Billy Crush, I used to live next door to you in Marlin Square with your Mum and Dad. I’m 90 now. Don’t let me forget I must buy a carrot and lettuce for my budgie; he

looks forward to his treat.” I can see her pet gives her life and pleasure. Dear readers, why not send in your special pet story but for me folks that’s all now and thanks for listening. Billy

The Passing With Fond Memories of a Long Time Village Resident


Mrs Doris Little

he village church of St Lawrence was packed on 2th April for the service of thanksgiving for the life of 93 years old village lady, Doris Little The service started with a prayer and a warm welcome by the Revd Guy Buckler. Later a touching tribute to his mother by Billy Little bought back so many memories of his mother’s life. I knew this dear lady well. I used to see her many times on my way to the shops in her front garden in the Crescent and it was always a pleasure to share with her bygone village memories. I often wonder how many people recall her late husband Henry doing the rounds with

his horse and cart and his door to door fresh vegetables. His horse was stabled in the High Street behind the Bricklayer’s Arms. There I go again, with another of my village stories. With all respect over the years Doris and her little family has done the village proud. It was up in the early hours and long before the village had stirred, to get young son Les wrapped up and off to work, come rain or shine. His pride was to make sure the High Street was litter free. Doris Little was born in 1920, the same year I was born. So from me and everyone dear Doris Little, Rest In Peace. Billy Crush

The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014 | PAGE 31


AIMS Achieve Improvements

he volunteer group to improve the look of Abbots Langley Village (AIMS) has been very busy during the spring. The group has been hard at work around the Police Station area, the Millennium Garden, Kitters Green and the village centre flower beds look amazing. You will probably have

noticed lots of potted tulips to brighten up areas too. They have also laid paving stones at the back of the Police Station to allow easy access to a Bay tree so local residents can take a few bay leaves home for cooking. Well done to the AIMS team! Photo by Eve Durtnall


Your independent chemist for personal professional service We can collect REPEAT PRESCRIPTIONS from selected local surgeries and dispense them ready for you to collect. For further details ask our pharmacist, Mr Suri Patel MRPharmS

Free home delivery service for the housebound Open Mon - Fri 9am to 7pm; Sat 9am to 4.30pm

Telephone: 01923 262151 Tel: 01923 268355/6

43-45 Hempstead Road, Kings Langley



PAGE 32 | The Abbots Langley Villager | May 2014

Published by Villager Newspapers Ltd. Editor: Julie Barton Charter Court, Vicarage Lane, Kings Langley, WD4 9HR - Tel: (01923) 270160


Abbots Langley Villager May 2014

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