On June 30 the Watford Observer launched its campaign to prevent the closure of Nascot Lawn Respite Centre. The lifeline to parents of some of the most vulnerable children in the county faced closure after Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group said it could no longer fund it.

That month, a brutal, unprovoked attack left a teenage boy with a shattered jaw and unable to eat solid food for two months. It was reported that the attacker smirked as he walked away from the victim.

The 15-year-old victim of a fatal stabbing was described as “a funny, nice guy”. Police launched a murder investigation into the death of teenager Koy Bentley, who was found at Rainbow House, in Water Lane, Watford, on Monday. A 15-year-old boy and a 21-year-old appeared in court that month charged with the murder.

An IT boss was forced to account for his actions after telling staff they would be first in line for redundancy if they voted Labour. Storm Technologies managing director John Brooker sent an email to staff at the Watford-based firm on the day of the General Election, but insisted it was “just in jest”.