The Rotary Club of Watford would like to congratulate the Watford Observer for 160 years of serving the Watford community with news and commentary. It is so important that local communities are kept aware of what is happening around them and there is no better way of communicating this than the Watford Observer.

For charitable organisations like the Rotary Club, we rely on the local newspaper to inform and illustrate the work we do. In this area the Watford Observer have been fantastic in supporting and publishing our events, stories and photos, which in turn has resulted in us being able to raise considerable funds for local charities.

We wish the Watford Observer a successful future and look forward to many more years of both of us supporting the local community.

David Silverston

President, Watford Rotary

Watford Observer: David Silverston.David Silverston. (Image: .)

To have recently reignited a much stronger working relationship with The Watford Observer is a source of comfort to Watford FC.

Not because things ever get too familiar; more that we know we can expect a fair hearing, allied to the balanced and independent reporting of the club and its affairs upon which the WO built its hard-earned reputation under the expert eye of Oliver Phillips, who served the newspaper with such distinction for so long.

We are very aware that our supporters regard The Watford Observer as a trusted source of news about the club, the town and the wider local community.

Having just celebrated 100 years of the club playing football at its Vicarage Road home, we are delighted to salute The Watford Observer upon the occasion of its 160th anniversary.

Here’s to many more years of meaningful collaboration, to the benefit of readers and supporters everywhere.

Very best wishes on behalf of all here at the club.

Richard Walker

Head of Communications & Media Relations, Watford Football Club

Hand on Heart arrived in Watford in 2020. HoH is a charity that serves people who are homeless and other vulnerable groups including children from low income families.

Before the pandemic we were operating as a hobby from our living room in Ealing. With a handful of volunteers, HoH served 200 guests a year. However, during lockdown the need for support grew exponentially, and in 2020, HoH moved to our current premises on Lower High Street in Watford.

The work performed by HoH was swiftly noticed by Watford Observer and featured for the work being done. At each campaign, WO embraced the story and featured at every opportunity. Together, we wanted to show the positive work being done by charities in Watford and how the community and volunteers came together to support a worthy cause.

We truly believe the contributions made by WO has encouraged volunteers and donors to come forward to help this charity and many others they feature.

Today, two years after arriving in Watford, Hand on Heart is severing thousands of guests from various vulnerable groups across the UK in 30 locations. It is supported by almost 500 volunteers, many local to Watford and the surrounding areas.

Watford’s legacy of a welcoming, inclusive and open town is built around a voice of communication, information and awareness. WO has gone a long way to be part of the success and HoH is proud to be part of this community.

Afzal Pradhan BEM

Hand on Heart

Watford Observer: Geoff Wicken.Geoff Wicken. (Image: .)

This milestone is truly one to celebrate. For a newspaper to have provided a written and photographic record every week for 160 years, serving to inform, educate and entertain the people of Watford and surrounding areas, is a superb achievement.

Watford is a town with its own unique character and history. As someone interested in that history, I have come to realise that the pages of the Watford Observer are the best record of Watford’s evolution and of everything important that has taken place in the area since the mid-19th century.

And in continuing to be the primary source of local information, it plays a central role for the town to this day. Long may this be the case!

Geoff Wicken

Chairman, Watford Treasury

Watford Observer: Jehangir Sarosh.Jehangir Sarosh. (Image: .)

Things that are needed, are essential and offer service have the tendency to go on and on, and do not disappear overnight. With 160 years of service to the local community the Watford Observer is an example of this.

The Watford October has served the community and helped to create a shared culture by giving a voice to all the different ethnic and religious communities and individuals. We are all different but we are a community and the local newspaper enables us to feel interconnected thereby recognising our common unity and giving us a feeling of belonging.

A local newspaper is the cornerstone that enables each individual to stay in touch with the local and national flow of information while being able to offer their personal concerns that affect the local politics, culture and wellbeing of the community.

The Watford Observer has served us well, therefore it is no wonder that it is celebrating its 160th anniversary.

We thank the editors and all the journalists for the trustworthy information you have provided so keep up the excellent work and may the Watford Observer prosper and continue to flourish.

Jehangir Sarosh OBE

Conversations across Beliefs

Three Rivers Museum has existed for 35 years to present the story of what it was like to live and work round here. We depend on people to tell us that story, and to illustrate it with things that we keep in our collection. And when we go back beyond the current memory of people in and around what's now Three Rivers, we rely heavily on our local newspaper - ours is a local story.

The Watford Observer has been reporting carefully for 160 years, providing a record of the lives of the people across this area which is absolutely vital to what we now know. Without that record we would be hard pressed to have any understanding at all: not only are the facts recorded, but comment and observations also help us appreciate what was important, and how people felt about it.

It's often said that today's newspaper is tomorrow's fish and chip paper. No, it isn't: today's local paper is of interest today, of course, and informs us all, but it's also the record of the time. Today's events will be history tomorrow - and will often have been noted down in the Watford Observer.

So we in Three Rivers Museum thank the team at the Watford Observer, past as well as present, who have recorded and presented the local story so carefully for 160 years. We congratulate them on that achievement, and we look forward to many more years of the same service.

Fabian Hiscock

Chairman, Three Rivers Museum Trust

The Watford Observer has been there to record the inception and history of West Herts Sports Club since 1890.

In February 1890 , when the Watford Observer was a youthful 28 , a public meeting was held in the Corn Exchange in Watford to consider a scheme to prepare a Sports Ground on land owned by the Earl of Essex. The WO published an editorial on April 12, 1890 advocating the benefits of this initiative. This was followed up with further reports on progress on the development of the new ground. Finally when West Herts Cricket and Football Club was finally constituted and matches began to be played in September 1890 it recorded: “The success of the Club and Ground is assured…. The ground looked as level as a billiard table and nothing but praise on all sides was to be heard of the energy which in six months placed Watford in possession of the finest ground in the County”.

Since those early days the progress of the Club both on and off the field has been faithfully recorded in the WO. For many years the Cricket Club participated in the WO KO competition during its lifetime and came out as winners on several occasions”.

West Herts Sports Club would like to thank the Watford Observer for the relationship we have enjoyed over more than a century and wish it all the very best for the future.

Dennis Lock

President and Chairman, West Herts Sports Club

Watford Observer: Enoch Kanagaraj.Enoch Kanagaraj. (Image: .)

Many congratulations to The Watford Observer and its team on the completion of its 160th anniversary of its publication. The Watford Observer over these years has done commendable work in bringing information, reports and opinions so vital in this age of media.

The Watford community has always appreciated the professional quality of its output and was very happy to collaborate with it in all these years. WO has been a great vehicle of dissemination of precise and accurate information on government policies and news on social and cultural developments.

On this commemorative occasion, we wish the WO team greater success in times to come. Keep bringing to us the good stories and keep expanding your readership!

Enoch Kanagaraj

Founder & CEO of One Vision Charity

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