Wonderful nostalgia has once again appeared in the Watford Observer with a report and picture of a horse and cart attempting to proceed through a flooded Watford High Street in 1907.

It was heading in the direction of Bucks, the well-known locally established bakers and confectioners. However, the information in the report is not entirely accurate with regard to Bucks. Bucks was also well known locally and in surrounding areas for running a hospitality business. In their High Street premises they also had an events area where licensed catering would be provided for local businesses to use for social and special events. Bucks would also cater for other special occasions, including providing licensed catering for Watford Borough Council.

Adding to the information regarding the picture of Bucks, the lime trees opposite Bucks stood in front of the Lime Tree Temperance Hotel that in later years was called Dudley’s Corner. Looking at the picture you can see Wrens to the right of Bucks. Wrens specialised in horse tack and saddlery as well as other equipment for various sporting activities.

To the left of Bucks as you look at the picture is Empress Tea Rooms and Restaurant. The site of the Empress Tea Rooms was intended as the site for the terminus of the Metropolitan Railway Branch from Moor Park. The original plans were greatly modified because of objections to the proposed railway having to cross the Countess of Essex Cassiobury Estate. When the line was opened in 1925 by Alderman M.A.Thorpe, the new station was then sited on the edge of the Cassiobury Estate.

I do hope readers find this interesting as I do regarding Watford’s past.

Ernie MacKenzie

Gammons Lane, Watford