Oxhey Village Environment Group | www.oveg.org

News from the Mayor

Here is the latest news from the Mayor’s office, which includes updates on our major projects and shares links to all you need to know about the Big Launch event for the town centre events programme, which happens this Friday!


Yesterday I laid the very last paving slab of our top of the town improvements – the work is now complete and our historic pond has had its much needed make-over!  I was joined by pupils from Watford Central Primary school, who were ever so enthusiastic  about how it looks and were really excited about our Big Events programme – especially the ice skating rink and the outdoor film screenings next month.  That’s what it’s always been about for me – reclaiming this part of town as somewhere Watford families can come to enjoy themselves during the day and in the early evening.

It looks really impressive too and the whole area has taken on quite a different look and feel.  The pond has new lighting, seating areas and granite steps around it.  The water is cleaner thanks to a state-of-the-art filtration system and UV filters. There are three new fountains too and of course the new bridge, complete with illuminated hand rails and decking.  I love it (but experience tells me some will hate it)!


On Friday (20th June) we are having the official launch event for our new programme of Big Events that will be taking place in the new space created as a result of The Parade redevelopment.   I will be doing the opening at 1pm along with Mary Portas, who has been advising the government on how to rejuvenate high streets and has had her own TV series’ on the subject in recent years.  Most importantly Mary is a former Watford resident and proud to support our town move forwards in such a positive way.

The Big Launch itself consists of a series of performances that have been specially created to work with the new space.  They kick off at lunchtime (1.20pm) and are repeated again in the early evening so those that work office hours don’t miss out on the fun.  All the details can be found at www.WatfordBigEvents.co.uk.  They are all free – bring the family!


The Big Launch also marks the start of the Imagine Watford festival, which is now in its fourth year.  If you haven’t attended in previous years then I can thoroughly recommend it.  It’s 10 days of free top notch outdoor performances dotted around The Parade.  Last year we were blessed with some really sunny weather, so the atmosphere was excellent, with everyone milling around, enjoying a drink in the sunshine from one of the many bars. You can find the full details online at www.imaginewatford.co.uk or pick up a programme from the Palace Theatre or the Town Hall.  It’s running until the 29th June.


I am aware that emotions have been stirred up recently regarding the new access road that will be built for reaching the Health Campus.  It received full planning permission last year, and was part of the original plans that were approved in 2007.  Its purpose has always be primarily for accessing the hospital and the whole site, and specifically to improve the time taken for emergency vehicles to get to and from the hospital.  It will also help reduce hospital related traffic on the surrounding roads – such as  Vicarage Road and the Hornets gyratory.  The Health Campus partners have provided lots of information regarding the road on the Health Campus website.


Work is progressing on the new Watford market, which will be located in the grounds of the TJ Hughes building.  The containers are all being fitted out offsite and we are on track for the planned opening in September.

The Queens Road Summer Market is also taking place again this summer.  Anyone interested in taking out a stall should email queensroadsummermarket@hotmail.com or visit their facebook page: www.facebook.com/queensroadmarket.  The market will take place on: 12 & 26th July and 9th & 23rd August – put them in your diary!


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This entry was posted on 18 June 2014 by in All News, Local News.