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st albans February 2021


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Welcome to February... ...bringing with it anything from snowy days to sunny skies and the promise of spring around the corner, as we keep our fingers crossed for the return of some sort of normality in the near future. We’ve found a number of online things to do to keep you busy, from History at Home to Repair What You Wear, and when we can get out and about again, why not pop along to Whipsnade Zoo and visit Margaret the baby Giraffe or take a dip at Woburn Lido. If you’re interested in advertising we’d love to hear from you. The magazines are monthly and if you don’t have a copy handy, you can always find them on Twitter, Facebook or our website. In the meantime stay safe and look after yourself and others.

Jane & Wendy @theNOWmagazines

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Snowdrops & More

Please check websites for changes

Benington Lordship 30th Jan - 28th Feb 11am - 4pm As always, the gardens will be carpeted in a spectacular display of snowdrops around the remains of the Norman keep and surrounding moat. Hellebores, aconites and winter flowering shrubs will also be in flower, as well as the coloured stems of acers, cornus and willow around the ponds. Two main species of snowdrop make up the spectacular display: the single common snowdrop Galanthus nivalis; and double Galanthus nivalis ‘flore pleno.’ The Snowdrop Walk, which runs along the wall at the top of the moat, was planted in the early twentieth century by the present owner’s family. Over the years, a collection of rare and unusual snowdrops has developed, many of which can be found growing in the borders. There will also be hellebores and potted snowdrops for sale. Adult £6 (£7 on Sundays), child £2.50, under 5’s free www.beningtonlordship.co.uk

recognisable, including the wooden dresser lined with copper pans, serving hatch, tiled walls and extraction hood which help tell the stories of the kitchen staff and jump into the perfect photo opportunity with a selection of dressing up items. Half-Term Activities 13th - 21st Feb 10am - 4pm What do you know about endangered animals? Discover fun facts as you go on a trail around the grounds. Exhibition: Nick Knight: Roses from my Garden 13th Feb - 31st Oct British fashion photographer, Nick Knight’s desire to experiment, push boundaries and challenge his audience has led him to take up a new subject, the classic rose, but expressed in an entirely new way. Knight cuts selected roses from his garden and arranges them specifically, using only daylight to illuminate his subject. Photographed on an iPhone, the digital images are enlarged and filtered through software that uses AI to infill the space between pixels. What appears at first glance to be a historical approach to flower photography is at the very cutting edge of imaging technology. www.waddesdon.org.uk

National Gardens Scheme

All visits must be pre booked Hornbeams 7th Feb 2pm - 5pm See carpets of bulbs, cyclamen, witch hazel and cornus kousa Satomi which is of special interest in February. Enjoy the wisteria-covered walkway, rose and lavender plot and memorial garden. Adult £5, child free Priory Drive, Stanmore, Middlesex HA7 3HN 1 Elia Cottage 19th Feb 12.30pm - 4.30pm Waddeson Manor This third of an acre garden reflects the seasons, Normal grounds admission applies and with snowdrops being the first welcome visitors pre-booking is essential for all events combined with crocus tommasinianus and Spring at Waddesdon 3rd Feb - 21st March hellebores. There’s a stream with a Monet-style Enjoy the outdoors as the gardens burst into colour bridge, pond and cascade plus water features. with beautiful bulbs, and white blankets of Plenty of seats and two summerhouses. There will snowdrops, a symbol of hope in British folklore, be coffee, tea and cake and a garden quiz. Due to which herald the arrival of spring. Translated as ‘milk the steep nature of the garden, there is no wheelchair access. flower’, these appear from late January, creating a Adult £4, child free distinctive white blanket across the grounds. Nether Street, Ware SG12 8TH Exhibition: History of the Manor Kitchen 3rd Feb - 7th March 11am - 4pm Manor Restaurant King's Arms 28th Feb 2pm - 4pm When building Waddesdon between 1877 and 1883, This small woodland garden of about 1½ acres was Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild wanted to ensure his created by plantsman, the late William Nourish. It new home provided every comfort and convenience, has trees, shrubs, bulbs and many interesting collections throughout the year. Since 1987, the and Waddesdon quickly developed a reputation for garden has been maintained by ‘The Friends of the serving the finest food, all prepared in the Manor Garden’ on behalf of Ampthill Town Council. There kitchens. This year, for the first time, the kitchen is will be a mass of snowdrops and early spring plants being restored to its original state. As you explore to enjoy this month. Adult £4, child free the kitchen, compare today’s surroundings with an Brinsmade Road, Ampthill, Beds MK45 2PP image from Windmill Hill archive of the kitchen in www.ngs.org.uk 1900. Many of the fixtures and fittings remain




National Nest Box Week 14th - 21st Feb National Nest Box Week (NNBW) takes place each February to encourage everyone to put up nest boxes to promote and enhance the biodiversity and conservation of our breeding birds and wildlife. Valentine’s Day was chosen for the start of NNBW as this is the traditional date when birds pair up for the new breeding season. Natural nest sites such as holes in trees and buildings are disappearing as people carry out home and garden improvements and woods are ‘tidied up’. Since NNBW was launched in 1997 it’s estimated there are about 6 million nest boxes in UK gardens. This year when choosing a nest box why not help a ‘Species of Conservation Concern’, such as the House Sparrow as it’s becoming harder for them to find suitable nesting sites, particularly in the roofs of modern houses. House Sparrows breed in loose colonies, so try putting up several boxes a few feet apart where up to 3 breeding pairs can nest together. Remember it’s illegal to disturb any nesting wild birds as they’re protected by law under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. ww2.rspb.org.uk


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a challenging year for the world, and the arrival of our precious giraffe calf on the same day and actually at the same time as the much-anticipated COVID-19 vaccination was first administered feels like a real moment of hope and one we are so keen to celebrate and remember. We very much hope that Margaret Keenan will be able to come in and visit her namesake one day soon, so we can introduce them in person!” It costs £10k a month to feed and care for the giraffes and Whipsnade and other ZSL Zoos lost almost £20 million due to closures and caps on visitor numbers during the Covid pandemic and so a fundraising appeal has been launched to help zoos to stay open. Why not get involved at www.zsl.org

Out & About & Online! Please check websites for any changes

Workshop: Butterfly Bakes 3rd Feb 4.30pm online via Zoom Follow a step-by-step guide to make delicious, easyto-make biscuits. They are perfect for enjoying on a cold winter’s day with a hot drink. Make them vegan by swapping butter for vegan spread. To make sure you have the ingredients before the workshop look at the recipe online. www.wildlondon.org.uk

Half Term Explorer Quest 13th - 21st Feb It's time to venture outside and start exploring on this family fun trail around the grounds of Wrest Park. Find the clues and solve the puzzles to emerge victorious. Adult £13.90, child £8.40 Entry is included in the admission price, please book. Wrest Park, Silsoe MK45 4HR www.english-heritage.org.uk

Day of Hope ZSL Whipsnade’s giraffe herd welcomed a giant six foot tall arrival on what has been dubbed ‘the day of hope’ by staff at the Zoo. The female calf was born at the same time as the first COVID-19 vaccine was given to 90 year old Margaret Keenan, during the early hours of 8th December, and in recognition of the poignant moment, the infant has been named Margaret. Margaret is the second calf to be born to mum Luna, adding even more meaning to that ‘day of hope’ as it’s a positive boost for her species, as Reticulated Giraffes are officially classified as endangered in the wild. Team Leader Mark Holden said, “2020 has been


History at Home While spending more time at home again, English Heritage would like to bring a little history into your living room, and help you discover some the best stories from England’s past. Just visit their website where they have lots of stay-athome favourites, from videos and podcasts to oldfashioned recipes and historical how-tos including: Things for Kids to Make and Do The English Heritage Podcast / History from Above History in Focus / Behind the Scenes Featured Video Series www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/whats-on/family -events

Woburn Lido When lockdown lifts Woburn Lido will be open for cold water swimming with the capacity reduced to 12 lane swimmers at any one time. Sessions can be found on the bookings page and are constantly updated so make sure you keep checking Facebook @WoburnLido Tea, coffee and other warm beverages are available as well as hot and cold snacks. All bookings must be made in advance Woburn Lido, Crawley Road, Woburn MK17 9QG www.woburnlido.weebly.com

Exhibition: Royal College of Physicians Unseen from 18th Jan online The history of medicine like you’ve never seen it before. The Royal College of Physicians (RCP) has been collecting objects, works of art, recorded interviews, rare books and documents for over 500 years. See the display of some of the unseen riches for the very first time. Delve into their collections to discover never-seen-before curiosities, and explore previously hidden stories from the history of medicine and beyond. www.history.rcplondon.ac.uk



Get Water Fit #save10aday

Talking About Climate Anxiety Fires, floods and Covid-19 - without a doubt 2020 was a tough year. Being constantly surrounded by negative news can be overwhelming. On top of all this, we are in a state of climate emergency and people are suffering psychologically as a result. With little data, the prevalence of climate anxiety is hard to quantify. The American Psychological Association defines it as, ‘a chronic fear of environmental doom’. Many are familiar with this feeling, with media headlines regularly highlighting the worsening nature of the climate crisis. Within the research there are indications that climate anxiety is affecting young people the most and the consequences will be felt throughout their lives. They will face problems, like the ethics of having children who will be adults when the climate crisis could be much worse. As with all mental health issues, it is not experienced in one definitive way. Climate anxiety will look different for different people, but is equally legitimate.Compassion is key, as we all face challenges around us. Acknowledging the issue is the first step. While it may be easier to gain temporary solace by turning your back on the issues, climate change is not going away. If you feel you are suffering from Climate Anxiety, you are not alone, so talk to others about it and set practical goals to respond to climate change, simultaneously tackling some of that concern. In February Sustainable St Albans will be holding an online event to discuss climate anxiety, and to respond to its challenges. Look out for more details at www.sustainablestalbans.org.

We all know using less water is a good thing. But it can be hard to see how we can cut down. Few of us feel we waste water, we just use what we need, don’t we? In fact, in St Albans District we use more water than almost anywhere else in the country. Each person uses about 10 litres more than the UK average every day, and that’s exactly the amount we’re asking you to save. Sustainable St Albans have teamed up with Affinity Water to encourage local residents to reduce water use.The good news is, it’s really easy just sign up at www.getwaterfit.co.uk to get your free Water Saving Kit and the clever little devices will do all the hard work for you. If everyone joins in, we’ll save a huge 1 million litres a day, lowering our community’s carbon footprint and protecting the River Ver and its wildlife. As a local resident, your contribution is absolutely vital. Save 10 a day and you’ll make a real difference to St Albans, now and in the years to come. www.sustainablestalbans.org

Repair What You Wear This unique, free to access website aims to teach and inspire anyone to easily mend their own clothes. At a time when people are increasingly aware of the importance of reducing waste as well as saving money, Repair What You Wear gives people easy to use techniques and skills to mend their own clothes. 2021 is the year of climate action and action on fashion is right up there. You know what to do - buy pre-loved, buy from sustainable sources, wear at least 30 times, learn to repair and rejoice in the knowledge that these actions are making a contribution to reducing carbon emissions. Why not encourage friends and family to do the same, many small actions can have a big impact! www.repairwhatyouwear.com




Take Care of Yourself

Focussing on our health and wellbeing has become even more important in the fight against Covid-19, and while living with the restrictions can be challenging, there is much we can do to help ourselves. Looking after our immune system is of vital importance, so should we catch the virus, our body is in the best place to fight it. Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin B Complex and Zinc are required for a healthy immune system, and ensuring we’re getting enough has never been so important. It’s often difficult to obtain enough nutrients through food, so supplementing a healthy diet is probably wise. Also, if you’re suffering from anaemia, taking an iron supplement may be advisable, however, I always stress that anyone with health issues should talk to their GP before embarking on a supplement regime. The restrictions have hit many of us hard, bringing huge changes to the way we live our lives, this has caused many to feel lonely, anxious, frustrated and for some it has brought huge financial worry. While we are very much stuck with the situation, adopting a different way of thinking can help us get through the next few weeks. Obviously, it’s winter, so a stark contrast from the lock down of last summer when we could use the garden and enjoy the weather. So what can we do? When we think about winter, our thoughts often turn to our homes, so making them feel cosy and inviting can help us feel happy to spend time there. Lighting a few tealights (please observe safety when using candles), fairy lights do not have to be just for Christmas, they’re great for achieving a cosy light. The use of throws and cushions can make your home feel warm and inviting and on those chilly days, you can curl up under a throw with your favourite book. Use the time to do the things you enjoy, reading, listening to music or a favourite hobby. Treat yourself, prepare some food you enjoy, take a warm bath, give yourself a facial or manicure. Before going to bed, writing down five things you are grateful for can really help to change your


perspective in a positive way and improve your sense of wellbeing. This is a time and opportunity where you can care for yourself and give yourself the time you need to re-charge, so make the most of it, so once life returns to a more normal level, you’ll be rested and ready to begin with renewed energy. Bright, cold days are great for wrapping up and going for a walk, because daylight and exercise help us to fight depression and lift our mood. We can exercise once a day in Tier 5, so take the opportunity to get plenty of fresh air and exercise. Be sure to observe social distancing to keep yourself and others safe. It should never be underestimated how important daylight is for our mental health, so open your curtains and blinds and let that healing light into your home. This is something positive we can do for our physical and mental health. Use social media, Zoom, FaceTime and the phone to keep in touch with family and friends. Try to talk to somebody every day if possible. The important thing is that we all focus on the things we do have and the things we can do. We are offering online appointments for our usual services and for anyone who is struggling with loneliness, anxiety or anything connected to lockdown, we are offering free 30 minute FaceTime or telephone chats 10am to 4pm Monday to Saturday. Please contact Jacqui on 01727 844912



NOW at the Cathedral

The Cathedral remains open, and will also continue to livestream services every Sunday Talk: Tolkien on Temptation, Temperament and Theology 23rd Feb 7.30pm Online via Zoom Are some people inherently good, and some evil? Are some characters simply helpless in the face of their flaws, or can they be overcome? Do our choices in the moment or a predetermined destiny dictate whether we will do well or fail in the spiritual and moral tests we face? With the help of Galadriel and Gollum, Saruman and Samwise, Frodo and Faramir, and more, see how The Lord of the Rings sheds light on temptation, character, and providence. Speaker: The Rev’d Philip Hobday. £10, £6 Course: Science and Faith 23rd Feb - 23rd March 7.30pm Online via Zoom Science and Christianity have done more to shape our understanding of the world and the way we live than any other cultural and intellectual movements. Yet together they raise profound questions. Does science demolish faith or deepen it? How can a serious scientist be a committed Christian? How should we understand the Big Bang, evolution, miracles, God, ourselves, or artificial intelligence? Look at these questions, and others, from theological, scientific, historical and philosophical perspectives. This is an introductory yet thought-provoking course, aimed primarily at those new to this area. Tutor: The Revd Canon Dr Tim Bull, Tutor in Science and Theology. £60 Volunteering Over 600 volunteers keep the Cathedral running, there are various ways to volunteer including: Bell Ringing, Flower Arranging, Parish Singers, Parish Orchestra, Textile Guild, Youth Work, Concert Stewarding and Cathedral Guides. If you would like to volunteer please email volunteers@stalbanscathedral.org Exhibition: The Power of Pilgrimage See the story of St Alban and the history of the Cathedral brought to life in new displays and audio visuals. Learn about the Abbey and how the monks created beautiful manuscripts in this digital tour and experience a year in the life of the Cathedral. www.stalbanscathedral.org


NOW at the Local Theatres Please check websites for changes

Abbey Theatre Stones in his Pockets 16th - 20th Feb Hollywood comes to rural Ireland in this hilarious multi-award winning comedy with a poignant undercurrent, set in a small rural town in Ireland where an epic movie is being filmed. The story centres on Charlie and Jake who are employed as extras. After a tragic incident concerning a local teenager, Charlie and Jake give an extraordinary account of events, taking on all the roles themselves. Abbey Theatre AL1 2DL www.abbeytheatre.org.uk

The Sandpit Theatre Cezanne: Portraits of a Life 21st Feb 3pm Exhibition on Screen brings back this unique and fascinating exploration of the life and times of Paul Cézanne. One cannot appreciate 20th-century art without understanding the significance and genius of Paul Cézanne. Filmed on location at the National Portrait Gallery London, National Gallery of Art Washington and Musée d’Orsay Paris, this film features interviews with curators and experts, and correspondence from the artist himself, taking us beyond Cézanne’s portraits to the places he lived and worked, and sheds light on an artist who is perhaps the least known of all the Impressionists, until now. The Sandpit Theatre AL4 9NX www.sandpittheatre.co.uk

The Maltings Arts Theatre A Room of One’s Own 23rd - 27th Feb 7.30pm Virginia Woolf’s 1928 exploration of the impact of poverty and sexual inequality on intellectual freedom and creativity. Take a wry, amusing and incisive trip through the history of literature, feminism and gender. Meet Charlotte Brontë, Jane Austen, Aphra Behn and Shakespeare’s sister – Judith! Go forward into the far-flung future of… 2020. But whatever you do, Keep Off The Grass! The Maltings Arts Theatre AL1 3HL www.maltingstheatre.co.uk






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Out & About & Online!

Remap If you’re living with disability, Remap would like to make your life easier. Remap Hertfordshire South is the local branch of a national charity dedicated to designing and producing custommade equipment for all ages and mobility needs. They use experienced mechanical, electrical, computing engineers and woodworkers so they can be trusted to make quality equipment which is free of charge. They recently built a set of parallel bars for a young boy with cerebral palsy, which allowed him to take huge strides in learning how to walk and gain confidence in his own ability. The video of him smiling and laughing as he makes great progress went viral with 3 million views online! They have adapted a guitar tuner for a keen player with visual impairment. Adaptations like this can make all the difference to someone’s life. They have created a vast range of equipment including: chair and sofa raises, window openers, therapy steps, Braille teaching aids, adapted board games and more, visit the website to read about their innovative projects. If you, a family member or a friend are living with disability, let Remap make life easier, they believe all disabled people should have the right equipment to live independent lives. Or if you have metalwork, woodworking, electronic or computer skills contact them to become a Remap volunteer and help improve the quality of life for disabled people across South Hertfordshire. 01727 613177 herts.s@remapgroups.org.uk www.hertfordshire-south.remap.org.uk

Talk: 'Thirty Birds to see in your Lifetime' 5th Feb 7.30pm online via Zoom With Dominic Couzens, the well-known naturalist, writer and author whose articles have appeared in 'Bird Watching' and 'BBC Wildlife' magazine. A donation to the local RSPB group would be welcomed. Please book martinrjspc@hotmail.com ww2.rspb.org.uk

Talk: Winter Wildfowl Identification 11th Feb 7pm online A 60 minute talk and Q&A session for those wishing to get to know wetland wildfowl (including ducks, geese, rails, herons and grebes). By the end, you'll know your divers from dabblers and goldeneye from gadwall. Presented by Josh Kalms, People & Wildlife Officer, Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust. Suitable for adults or keen under 12’s www.hertswildlifetrust.org.uk

Walk: Whipsnade & Dunstable Downs 2½ hours 4.5miles / Map Landranger 166; Explorer 181 & 193 Starting at Chilterns Gateway Centre, this self led walk covers moderate terrain with a few steep gradients to help push your stamina levels. Admire beautiful views along Icknield Way as you head towards Whipsnade Tree Cathedral. This memorial to those lost in the WW1 provides a tranquil spot to rest before you head off on the trail back to the Centre. Chilterns Gateway Centre, Dunstable LU6 2GY www.nationaltrust.org.uk

parkwalk: Strive for Five An eight week guide to successfully completing a 5k walk. At parkrun they want to make the world a healthier, happier place and as part of the parkrun Resolution, #parkwalk has been launched. Go at your own pace and do as much as you can. Print out the plan and tick off each week as you go. www.blog.parkrun.com

The Wonderful Benefits of Walking Now we’re spending more time inside, getting wrapped up and walking outdoors is so beneficial to our health. Even a brisk 10minute daily walk has lots of health benefits and counts towards your recommended 150 minutes of weekly exercise. You can tell you're walking briskly if you can still talk but cannot sing the words to a song. Taking part in physical activity has so many benefits for our physical and mental health. It can significantly reduce your risk of major illnesses, such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer. Research shows exercise can boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy and reduce the risk of stress, depression, dementia and Alzheimer's disease.


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Sign up to Air Pollution Alerts Residents in St Albans District can now sign up to a free alerts service which is helpful for those suffering from lung or heart conditions such as asthma, bronchitis or emphysema. You will receive advance warning when air pollution is forecast to be moderate, high or very high. Allowing you to make informed decisions and take action to reduce the risk of suffering a medical episode.St Albans City and District Council has subscribed to the Air Quality England service to make it available to all residents. Councillor Chris White, Leader and Portfolio Holder for Climate, Environment and Transport, said: “We are committed to cutting harmful emissions and making the District carbon neutral by 2030. We are making considerable progress with those goals but in the meantime there will still be elevated air pollution from time to time as there is across the country. Some people are vulnerable to this and these alerts will be extremely useful, helping them to better plan their days. I would recommend anyone with concerns about this issue to sign up to the service. There is no cost, so they have nothing to lose.” You can receive alerts by text, voicemail or email. The warnings will be sent on the evening before a high pollution day with guidance from health professionals to make people aware of any precautions they may want to take. The pollution calculations are based on the UK’s Air Quality Branding System, the service does not report on pollen levels. To sign up visit www.airqualityengland.co.uk/localauthority/knr-subscription

Hattie’s Hedgehogs Unwanted Gifts Appeal This charity was set up in memory of Hattie, a pregnant hedgehog who died on 4th June 2019. Hattie had been a rescue that was released on 22nd May and so had only been roaming free again for a matter of weeks. Do you have any unwanted gifts lurking at the back of your cupboards? Instead of holding on to them, please consider donating to Hattie's Hedgehogs for sales, raffles and auctions. Please get in touch if you can help as they would be very grateful for any support. www.hattieshedgehogs.co.uk


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Pancake Day

 In the UK we will eat 52 million eggs on Pancake 16th Feb Day, that’s 22 million more than on a normal day.  Over a lifetime, an average person will eat 7,300 eggs.  Most countries have their own types of pancake. Some of the best known are: buckwheat flour galettes of Brittany; sweet Cretan tiganítes of Greece; Moroccan semolina baghrir and Russian buckwheat-flour blinis.  In the village of Olney, Buckinghamshire, Shrove Tuesday has been celebrated with a pancake race since 1445. It’s said that the tradition began when one harassed wife heard the shriving bell and dashed off to church, still clutching her frying pan.  The world record for pancake flipping is 349 flips in two minutes.  The largest pancake ever tossed measured 15 metres in diameter.

Olio the Food Sharing App Olio is a mobile app for food-sharing, aimed at reducing food waste by connecting neighbours with surplus food to those who need such food, so spare food can be shared, not thrown away. Now more people are at home, with some struggling, it’s more important than ever to work together, so the more people that join in, the better it will work. The food must be edible; it can be raw or cooked, sealed or open. You can also become a food waste hero by collecting from stores and adding them to olio. There are food and non-food items added daily, and anyone can join and add or request items. www.olioex.com

Soroptimist Women's Group 22nd Feb via Zoom 7.30pm Public health nutritionist Dr Margaret Ashwell OBE speaks about the relationship between food and health. Call Jane 07834 345796 or visit www.sigbi.org/st-albans/clubprogramme

Super Spuds February is the time of year to think about home grown potatoes, they’re an ‘good value’ crop, very tasty and extremely versatile. If you don’t have much space, use a 45cm diameter pot with a single potatoe tuber. Make sure the container has drainage holes, fill it two thirds with compost, pop the tuber in the centre and add a good covering of compost on top. As foliage appears, cover with more compost and repeat until the container is full, then keep well it watered. Most potatoes produce a slightly earlier and heavier crop if the seed potatoes are allowed to produce small but sturdy sprouts before planting. Stand the tubers widest end up in a seed tray or old egg carton and place in a cool but frost free spot with plenty of natural light. After a few weeks the sprouts will be about 1cm tall, perfect for planting. Potatoes are divided into ‘earlies’ (first to be harvested) and ‘main crop’, generally larger tubers, harvested later. Try ‘earlies’ if the soil hasn’t been cultivated for several years. ‘Earlies’ are in the ground for less time than main crops and are less likely to suffer from wire-worm attack. ‘Earlies’ are good for smaller gardens as they take less space. No crop is without its share of problems and the fungus responsible for potato blight is sometimes hard to beat, especially in warm, damp years. Generally, ‘earlies’ suffer less with blight and you can select varieties which show resistance to the infection such as Valor, Lady Balfour, Coleen and especially Sarpo Mira and Sarpo Axona. Slugs are also a menace, tunneling into the tubers’ flesh and sometimes hollowing them out completely. The biological control nematode Nemaslug works under the soil surface, has a brilliant effect and poses no threat to wildlife. What potatoes to grow for:  Mashed - Dunluce, Valour, Maris Bard, Lady Balfour and King Edward.  Jackets - Cara, Lady Balfour, Picasso, Kestrel, King Edward, Desiree and Valor.  Roasts - Kestrel, Maris Piper, Desiree, Lady Balfour, Vivaldi and Edzel Blue.  Chips - Kestrel, King Edward, Maris Peer, Accord, Rooster and Edzel Blue.  Steamed - Vanessa, Dunluce, Edzell Blue and Lady Christl.  New - Lady Christl, Charlotte, Juliette, Casa Blanca, Nadine and Nicola. Happy Gardening by Pippa Greenwood




Caring & Sharing

Race for Life Will you help beat cancer by joining in Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life and help raise money for research into all 200 types of cancer. 29th May Welwyn & Hatfield Pretty Muddy 5k 30th May Welwyn & Hatfield 5k & 10k 5th June Watford 3k, 5k & 10k www.raceforlife.cancerresearchuk.org

British Heart Foundation Post your quality donations for free. Although shops and stores are temporarily closed, the freepost donation service is still available. They need branded clothing, jewellery, books, vinyl records, vintage toys, camera equipment and ornaments. Each freepost donation can weigh up to 10kg and be up to 60cm x 50cm x 50cm in size. Pack your items up in an envelope, parcel or box of your choice, request a freepost label (this will be emailed to you) and either print your label at home or download the voucher to print at the Collect+ drop off point. Take your packaged donation to a Collect+ drop off point. www.bhf.org.uk

Step Up for Dementia Why not take part in this challenge to complete 850,000 steps in three months which is the same number of people currently living with dementia in the UK. This challenge suits everyone, so get your family and friends involved and together you’ll discover different ways to hit 850,000 steps. Achieve 9,400 steps a day for 3 months by heading out on long treks, dancing or even hoovering. It’s free to sign up and if you raise £100 for Alzheimer’s Society, you’ll receive a medal in the post. Raise £300 and you’ll receive a t-shirt as a thank you for your support. Join the Step Up for Dementia Facebook group and get support from everyone else who is taking on the same challenge. Track your distance using your phone, smart watch or other device. You can link your Strava app to your JustGiving fundraising page to keep your friends and family up to date. You're responsible for tracking your own mileage. www.alzheimers.org.uk

Keech Hospice Care Lottery For just £1 a week you could win £1k (increased to £3k 4 times a year) or 151 other prizes. Playing the Keech lottery is a simple way to help the charity continue making a difference to seriously ill patients, and their families. Sign up online today and receive a unique six-digit lucky number which will be yours for as long as you play. Then, fingers crossed, see if your number is one of those randomly selected when the draw is made every Friday. There's no need to claim. If you win, your prize-winning cheque will be posted to you, it couldn't be easier. www.keech.org.uk

W lun e als oe ch trip es & njoy s to the get atre h er


DJ&M Plumbing Services Ltd We care about your small jobs too! ● Electric and Power Showers Fitted ● Ball Valves and Overflows ● Blocked WC’s, Sinks, Baths and

Basins ● Repair/Renew Stopcocks and Taps ● Plumb in Washing Machines

and Dishwashers ● Repair Leaking Pipes ● Outside Taps

Dean Herrington 01727 764217 07830 159010 info@djmplumbing.co.uk www.djmplumbing.co.uk see our main advert on the inside back cover



Effective Low Cost Advertising that Really Works! 1/4 page 1/3 page 1/2 page Full page

12 months £33 per edition £40 per edition £49 per edition £84 per edition

3 months £43 per edition £52 per edition £64 per edition £110 per edition

Please get in touch Call Jane or Wendy 07893 588291 07983 588313 jane@theNOWmagazines.com



Do You Need To Make Your Home Safer? Our homes have become central to our lives during the pandemic, but for older or less able people, the suitability of their home is particularly important. Being able to get in and out of the house, move around safely, access the bathroom, cook and go to bed all affect our dignity and wellbeing. If you’re starting to recognise that you can’t do these things safely, it’s time to make some improvements. I’ve seen people who often don’t know where to start and, understandably, they worry about cost. ‘‘If your home isn’t working for you, you can get the help you need’’ Financial help is available for people with a qualifying condition, the Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) is a means-tested grant to make changes in the home to help less able people lead more independent lives. The maximum payment is £30k. Search ‘DFG gov uk’ on the internet or call your local council for more details. Grants aside, if you’re not sure what you need there’s a wonderful website I came across recently called Ask Sara www.asksara.livingmadeeasy.org.uk You select what you have difficulty with and it gives advice and solutions to make life easier. Of course, a reputable supplier could also do the same. You may have noticed some advertised in this magazine. When it comes to the all-important bathroom, that’s my area of expertise. You might only need grab rails by your toilet, or a bath that’s easier to get out of. Sometimes people worry they need a full wet room, but often a less expensive low-level access shower will suffice. There are all sorts of options to suit your budget. Find a supplier you trust who will help you understand what’s available. And it’s not only the big, recognised brands that can help, smaller, specialist companies will take time to understand your needs and do what they can to help, whatever your budget. That’s what I pride myself in doing. My wife Julie and I set up AHM Installations following her experiences in nursing and caring, and my previous experience in the mobility industry. We guide our customers carefully through the installation of new bathroom equipment in their home. We hate to see people struggle and have learnt that no matter the budget or the situation, we can always find a solution. Call our family-run team on 01623 595337 We offer discounts for military veterans and, as part of our link with Alzheimer’s Society, for those with dementia. Simon Symcox, founder of AHM Installations

01727 648674

The Harpenden Shutter Company We Supply & Fit Beautiful Wooden Plantation Window Shutters Specialising in Bay Windows

Free No Obligation Consultation, Measuring & Quotation

Winter Sale 25% off Shutters 20% off all Blinds Awnings Poles & Curtains

Teresa & Kevin Buckler

01582 461639 kevin.buckler@fit-ex.com www.fit-ex.com/hertfordshire 20 Bewdley Close Harpenden



Index of Businesses Bathing Mobility AHM Installations Ltd Bathing Mobility Advisory Service Building Complete Refurbishment & Roofing Kingsholme Open Plan Solutions

29 5

7 Back Cover 18

Car Servicing / Repairs M Chapman Auto Services Children’s Art Camps ArtShed!

25 2

Chiropodist Kathy Witchard


Cleaning A&R Exterior Cleaning Services Ltd Domestique

6 31

Conservatory Roof Solutions Nu-Look Domestic Appliance Repairs Spin Doctor Education Kumon

9 29 3

Electricians Alban Electrical Services


Healthcare Spire Harpenden Hospital Hearing Services Hearing Healthcare Practice Interior Design Wall Street Interiors

16 & 17 13 3

Locksmiths Lock Around the Clock Locksmith Services

27 27

Loft Ladders Home Counties Loft Ladders


Painters & Decorators CB Decorators M & M Decorators

19 19

Plasterer Jason Moffat


Plumber DJ&M Plumbing Services Ltd

27 & 31

Roofing GJ Smith Roofing


Shutters The Harpenden Shutter Company


Singing Club Clover Singing Club


Flooring Dunstable Flooring & Kitchens Ltd


Slimming Lighter Life Vision Weight Consultancy

Garage Doors Garolla


Tree Surgeons Fircroft Tree Surgery Ltd

Health Intelligent Pilates


Windows & Doors Cloud 9 Kings Windows

Front Cover 12 6 23 22

Effective Low Cost Advertising that Really Works! Call Jane or Wendy Advertise in the NOW Magazines for as little as ÂŁ33 per month

07893 588291 / 313 www.theNOWmagazines.com

We have made every effort to ensure that any material published in st albans NOW is correct and can accept no liability for any errors or delays in publication or distribution, st albans NOW accepts no responsibility for its advertisers .


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Bathroom, Cloakroom, Shower Room and Kitchen Installations

Local Family Run Business, Over 35 Years Experience

Honest and Reliable Service Free Consultation/ Quotation for all Enquiries

Tiling Plastering Electrical

Discounts on all Bathrooms & Kitchens Supplied

Electric and Power Showers Ball Valves and Overflows Blocked WC’s, Sinks, Baths and Basins Repair/Renew Stopcocks and Taps Plumb in Washing Machines and Dishwashers Repair Leaking Pipes Outside Taps

Dean Herrington 07830 159010 01727 764217 info@djmplumbing.co.uk


To Advertise 07983 588291 jane@theNOWmagazines.com



Profile for wendy robertson

st albans NOW Feb 21  

Local affordable advertising, events and what's on in St Albans and Harpenden

st albans NOW Feb 21  

Local affordable advertising, events and what's on in St Albans and Harpenden