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Posted on 1:30pm Thursday 6th March 2014
Arriving in Calais at noon on a Sunday morning, I knew I could stop overnight but I just drove and nine hours and 650 hours later I was home, contemplating the fact, at 72, there is indeed no fool like an old fool
Posted on 10:06am Wednesday 5th March 2014
Political publications and station design
Posted on 1:30pm Thursday 27th February 2014
Six-five special - a classic case of distance lending enchantment. Even I thought it limited at the time but it was the only TV us rock addicts could watch.
Posted on 1:10pm Sunday 23rd February 2014
I imagine several local taxi drivers could tell you they’ve had that MP David Gauke in the back of their cab, but I wonder how many of them can say, as I can, they once sat next to him at a party?
Posted on 12:50pm Friday 21st February 2014
Hertfordshire County Council is currently in the throes of attempting to kick a bad habit: Tobacco. Well, investing in tobacco shares to be precise.
OK I admit old TV programmes would not stand the test of time but I would have liked the option to check
Posted on 1:30pm Thursday 20th February 2014
The BBC it its wisdom did not appreciate the wisdom of archiving early television shows. We might cringe if we were able to see them now, but we would have liked the option.
Posted on 4:00pm Friday 14th February 2014
Getting the train back from Manchester to Watford the other day, it felt like the end of days. The rain was pouring down, the wind was howling, and the landscape was desolate. And that was just Hemel Hempstead.
Posted on 2:00pm Friday 14th February 2014
It is difficult to describe the numbingly disorientating experience of being told you have symptoms that could be cancer.
Posted on 1:30pm Thursday 13th February 2014
TOWIE CBB Bake off, Strictly, Splash and all their so-called stars just leave me cold
Posted on 12:18pm Sunday 9th February 2014
I just love snowdrops. With their deceptively fragile beauty they are a sure sign that a new year of growth in our gardens is beginning. Who can help but smile with pleasure when they begin to show their nodding heads of exquisite little white flowers, tinged with the freshest of green. The legend associated with these brave forerunners of spring tells us that after the expulsion from Eden a kindly angel took pity on Eve who was crying desperately in the now barren wilderness. The angel blew on a snowflake turning it into a snowdrop and hope was born. The bulbs can be planted in the autumn or if you really want to see just what type you are planting a better way is to wait until spring and choose hybrids ‘in the green’. By doing this when the plants are in full leaf and you can really see what you are getting. They prefer a fertile and moisture retentive soil that has been enriched with plenty of organic matter. For a spectacular display plant in drifts under trees and shrubs. In time divide large clumps while they are in flower, or just after. Lift carefully and separate each bulb so that the leaves and roots are intact. Replant straight away at the same depth. I keep an eye on my neighbours’ gardens to see who has the best display of snowdrops and, of course, who had them in flower first. Last year I underplanted the apple tree that I am growing in a pot and whilst not yet in flower there are plenty of green shoots showing.
Posted on 4:50pm Friday 7th February 2014
The UK Independence Party’s announcement that it will be standing in the mayoral elections in May signified its growing presence in Watford.
Posted on 12:30pm Friday 7th February 2014
Forget Tupperware or Ann Summers parties. Event organisers in the American state of Colorado have ditched their peep-hole bras and air-tight biscuit boxes in favour of handing round elegant silver cases containing carefully rolled marijuana joints.
Posted on 1:30pm Thursday 6th February 2014
While Ed Moribund (sorry Miliband) is speaking you can see Ed Balls and Harriet Harman nodding in ritualistic agreement with every word that is spoken, while Nick Clegg looks as if he pondering whether or not to move his knight to Queen-four. Are we meant to take our politicians seriously?
Posted on 4:50pm Friday 31st January 2014
The health trust in charge of Watford General Hospital moved last week to reassure people about its commitment to rebuild the hospital.
Posted on 1:00pm Friday 31st January 2014
As a rule, reality TV programmes leave me cold. My own reality is too tiring without having to worry about the ups and downs of people I don’t even know, and I tend to think people who are daft and desperate enough to enter the Big Brother house deserve everything that comes their way.
Posted on 8:52pm Thursday 30th January 2014
The probklems with getting EDF to behave in an efficient manner along with repeated breaks in the supply makes me wonder why they do not concentrate on their French commitments.
Posted on 1:30pm Friday 24th January 2014
The question of whether Mayor Dorothy Thornhill will run for MP next year still hovers over the mayoral race unanswered. One person who will be awaiting the resolution to that mystery more keenly than most is current MP Richard Harrington.
Posted on 11:57am Thursday 23rd January 2014
Wolves, Moscow Spartak, Honved, Chataway and Kuts made front-page headlines and were feted for years because, in post-war days, the nation was desperate for good news.
Posted on 5:10pm Friday 17th January 2014
This is the time of year when rational, normal people start behaving like would-be monks. Out goes the booze, the coffee, the sweets and the place on the sofa. In comes a few trips to the gym, mineral water and the latest diet craze.
Posted on 12:10pm Friday 17th January 2014
What is a health campus? That question is more perplexing than it may initially seem.
Posted on 1:30pm Thursday 16th January 2014
We were writing and recording songs and Ellie was going to make it but we never got round to making the final push for fame apart from submitting a tape to Hughie Green. Since then they have been gathering dust since 1976 but now I hope to transfer them to cd.
Posted on 11:40am Saturday 11th January 2014
We are already a third of the way through January and I haven’t yet (or rather my husband hasn’t) taken down the outside fairy lights, though he has up-ended the poor old Christmas tree in the brown bin, where it reminds me of a pantomime dame bending over to flash her knickers.
Posted on 4:50pm Friday 10th January 2014
South west Hertfordshire has long been a hotbed of innovation. The revolutionary Chorleywood method of making cheaper bread was invented, unsurprisingly, by enterprising bakers in Chorleywood. The bouncing bombs used by the dambusters to cripple the Nazi war effort in the Second World War were tested and honed on a miniature reconstruction of the dam at BRE in Garston.
Posted on 1:04pm Thursday 9th January 2014
The Everly Brothers, Eusabio hit the headlines over the weekend and on the Monday there was a very large spread in The Independent on the significance of Buddy Holly. It all came together lin one, poignant, nostalgic binge
Posted on 5:10pm Friday 3rd January 2014
The first shopping trip after Christmas is a grim experience. The memories of stuffing, cheeseboards, and port-soaked hedonism are still vivid.
Posted on 3:29pm Friday 3rd January 2014
A picturesque winter trip through Languedoc,The Minerviois and the Pyrenees to sample Christmas in Spain - a subdued version of the festive season in Blighty
Posted on 6:21pm Friday 27th December 2013
Mentally castigating those who hog the central lane on the motorway down to Barcelona, I recalled the days when the M1 opened and first travelling upon it was an experience that mixed totally fright and trepidation with exhilaration.
Posted on 1:00pm Friday 20th December 2013
Keith Hurdle’s drunken, spittle-flecked racist tirade at a female Japanese Tube passenger was a repugnant spectacle – but he did not deserve to go to jail for it.
Posted on 11:34am Friday 20th December 2013
Eight grandchildren between us already and now we are heading for our ninth. Christmas preparations are different this year as grandchild number nine causes us to switch to Spain for the festive season. Off to Sant Cugat, near Barcelona, for Christmas with a difference.
Posted on 11:33am Sunday 15th December 2013
Lynda Bellingham, Shirley Eaton, Wham! Spice Girls. Local people have connections with the famous having attended school, became apprentices together or whatever. I tried to find where my youthful path had crossed that of those destined for fame, but failed, miserably.
Posted on 4:30pm Friday 13th December 2013
Today is the 40th anniversary of the announcement of the three-day working week, introduced by Edward Heath’s beleaguered (and soon ousted) government in 1973. How well I remember that winter of discontent and its endless strikes.
Posted on 11:50am Friday 13th December 2013
I have never quite understood what our political elite hope to achieve with awkwardly contrived photo ops.
Posted on 11:57am Saturday 7th December 2013
Going back to Benevent L'Abbaye in The Creuse, Limousin, France, for a two-day visit, only confirmed that we were right to move on, down to the south and The Tarn .
Posted on 1:50pm Friday 6th December 2013
In politics, money matters. Elections are expensive affairs and the more cash politicians can spend, the better chance they have of winning.
Posted on 12:00pm Friday 6th December 2013
There is a rather clever way of comparing countries around the world called the Big Mac Index.
Posted on 11:20am Saturday 30th November 2013
I don't know who told you about the facts of life, but in our house, it was left entirely to our mother.
Posted on 12:40pm Friday 29th November 2013
Most football fans don’t take an interest in the balance sheets of their club until things have gone wrong.
Posted on 1:00pm Thursday 28th November 2013
Two games a golf per week did not make me fit only less unfit. I discovered that when I bought a Rubbermaid upon moving to France and pottering about The Folly.
Posted on 3:30pm Friday 22nd November 2013
I doubt there are many in the town who would argue against Charter Place being redeveloped.
Posted on 12:20pm Friday 22nd November 2013
A few years ago, I got a wonderful email. It came out of the blue just before Christmas, inviting me to a special screening of the Doctor Who Christmas special. And I could bring a guest.
Posted on 3:41pm Thursday 21st November 2013
Moving from The Limousin to The Tarn in France was a big wrench, particularly after I had invested so much time and energy into developing an acre plot we dubbed The Folly. But having sold, it, we had to return to clear out the outbuildings and garage.
Posted on 1:52pm Sunday 10th November 2013
So many in England without key literacy and numeracy skills and are judged behind their grandparents