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The guide to local rivalries between Hertfordshire towns : Part 1

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Hertfordshire towns

Hertfordshire is a county like no other. Well that is according to many of its residents. Whether you were born and bred in Hertfordshire or moved to one of the Hertfordshire towns for a piece of that fine Hertfordshire life, you will know that it is one of the best places to live in the UK.

Hertfordshire continues to poll high in many surveys looking at living standards, income and overall happiness. These have included the ‘Sunday Times Best Places to Live’ and independent surveys from the likes of USwitch.

Whilst this has been great for ‘team Hertfordshire‘, polls looking at individual Hertfordshire towns (and ranking them) have created division and a touch of snobbery. Historically, there have always been rivalries between towns located near each other however, there are some unique rivalries between Hertfordshire towns. Over a series of posts and potentially a documentary, we are going to create ‘The guide to local rivalries between Hertfordshire towns‘.

The guide to local rivalries between Hertfordshire towns

The guide to local rivalries between Hertfordshire towns

  • Does St Albans believe its head and shoulders above the rest because of their city status?
  • Who really cares Watford have had a premiership team?
  • Do Letchworth & Hitchin still vie over the number of pubs they have?

These are the types of friendly rivalries we would like to get to the bottom of. We are not talking purely sports rivalries. That would be too simplistic. We will be looking at the history of local ‘friendly’ rivalries between Hertfordshire towns. Our goal is to focus on:

  • Historical ties that have caused rivalries
  • Rivalries started because of local amenities
  • Bizarre claims to fame
  • and last but not least, simple old jealously.

What next?

At this stage, we want to get local input from residents in Hertfordshire. We want to know which town you come from and who you which Hertfordshire town do you think is your towns rival?

We have ranked the various Hertfordshire towns based on populations and selected the top 20. We will collate the views and opinions from Hertfordshire locals on who they think is their town’s rival and why.

# Settlement District Population (2011)
1 Watford Watford 131,982
2 Hemel Hempstead Dacorum 94,932
3 Stevenage Stevenage 89,663
4 St Albans St Albans 82,146
5 Welwyn Garden City Welwyn Hatfield 48,380
6 Cheshunt Broxbourne 45,832
7 Hoddesdon Broxbourne 42,253
8 Bishop’s Stortford East Hertfordshire 37,838
9 Hatfield Welwyn Hatfield 37,577
10 Borehamwood Hertsmere 35,489
11 Hitchin North Hertfordshire 34,266
12 Letchworth North Hertfordshire 33,249
13 Harpenden St Albans 30,240
14 Hertford East Hertfordshire 26,658
15 Bushey Hertsmere 25,328
16 Rickmansworth Three Rivers 23,973
17 Potters Bar Hertsmere 22,639
18 Berkhamsted Dacorum 20,641
19 Abbots Langley Three Rivers 19,574
20 Ware East Hertfordshire 18,799

How to get involved?

At this stage, we would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on the subject. You can leave them at the bottom of the page. You can discuss it on social media with us using #TrendLifeHertfordshire or you can follow the discussions on Facebook – We are adding the Facebook group chats overtime.

All Things St Albans – Facebook discussion
We are from Hitchin – Facebook discussion
Hoddesdon, Hertford & Ware Local Community – Facebook discussion

Why are we doing this?

For fun and to learn more about the history of our towns from a different perspective. We as Hertfordshire locals always hear funny reasons why people have their favourite towns or towns they avoid. We want to find our some of the reasons and present them to residents of Hertfordshire. At this stage, we are only looking at Hertfordshire but we plan to do the same for Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire. Then we can look at the picture across the Three Counties.

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St Albans Comedy Extravaganza returns to Verulamium Park in July

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St Albans Comedy Garden presented by heycar is set to light up Verulamium Park this summer with a magnificent series of open-air shows from 27-31st July!

St Albans Comedy Garden presented by heycar is set to light up Verulamium Park this summer with a magnificent series of open-air shows from 27-31st July!

Starring legendary BAFTA and Perrier Award winner DYLAN MORAN, the guv’nor himself AL MURRAY, multi-award winning SARA PASCOE, the Last Leg’s ROSIE JONES, Father Ted star ARDAL O’HANLON, lo-fi hero DAVID O’DOHERTY and many more huge names performing at this year’s astounding set of open-air shows.

St Albans Comedy Garden line-up

Stand-up favourites are out in force too with cult poet / comic TIM KEY, German Comedy Ambassador HENNING WEHN, observational master ED BYRNE, Afterlife star KERRY GODLIMAN, Taskmaster champ LOU SANDERS, Edinburgh Comedy Award winner JOHN ROBINS, Netflix star JOEL DOMMETT, the inimitable REGINALD D HUNTER to name a few.

Alongside established names sit some of the brightest breakthrough talent such as the acclaimed CELYA AB, stand-up phenomenon FATIHA EL-GHORRI and the award-winning ESTHER MANITO, fast rising TADIWA MAHLUNGE all making their St Albans debut.

What to expect at St Albans Comedy Garden

Following last summer’s huge sell-out first edition St Albans Comedy Garden returns with another astounding programme of stand-up comedy presented in a fully-seated open-air theatre in the Park’s beautiful Water Meadow.

St Albans Comedy Garden presented by heycar is set to light up Verulamium Park this summer with a magnificent series of open-air shows from 27-31st July!

This year’s comedy extravaganza will once again be brimful with bars serving up a tastemaker selection of craft beers, cocktails and more, plus an array of street-food stalls from the leading lights of the local street food scene.

Tickets are expected to fly as comedy-lovers from St Albans and beyond grab the chance to see these masterfully curated shows, each featuring a host of critically-acclaimed stars guaranteeing a hit of absolute entertainment in the heart of the summer.

St Albans Comedy Garden - Sara Pascoe

The sibling team behind the Comedy Garden, Cass Randolph and Will Briggs of 57 Festivals, can’t wait to return to St Albans. Cass said “We’re thrilled with this year’s line-up and to be back in Verulamium Park, we had such a great first year last summer, the audiences were an absolute riot, far livelier than we had expected! The acts really feed off that kind of energy and in turn give incredible performances.”

Will added “We have some outstanding acts joining us this year, i’m especially looking forward to seeing Dylan Moran headline our opening night and can’t wait to watch stand-out newcomers CELYA AB and FATIHA EL-GHORRI on the big stage.”

St Albans Comedy Garden - Joel Dommett

This year’s event is partnered with heycar, Chief Commercial Officer Karen Hilton said: “With this year’s Comedy Garden returning to St Albans, it’s shaping up to be an incredible, feel-good summer. We have so much laughter to catch up on after the last few years and I can’t think of a better way to do it. The line-up is truly world-class, and we’re particularly looking forward to seeing the incredible Joel Dommett in action. heycar is honoured to be sponsoring this incredible event and we can’t wait to see everyone in St Albans this July!”

St Albans Comedy Garden tickets

Get your tickets now and be part of this year’s magnificent St Albans Comedy Garden! Visit the website to find out more www.stalbanscomedygarden.co.uk

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Blake Kuwahara launches Summer 22 eyewear collection

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Available from leading independent opticians, Blake Kuwahara SS 2022 collections consists of ten new styles including two designs from Kuwahara’s Grey Label Collection.

“After two very long years dealing with the pandemic, we are finally seeing light at the end of the tunnel” says Blake Kuwahara.  “This Spring Collection reflects that hopeful optimism with more color and adventurous shapes”.  His design ethos of creating eyewear that is at once artful yet wearable is evident in his signature frame-within-a-frame laminated technique and use of contrasting colors as well as his cast bone motif used in his Grey Label Collection.

Available from leading independent opticians, Blake Kuwahara SS 2022 collections consists of ten new styles including two designs from Kuwahara’s Grey Label Collection.

Also dropping this Summer will be a limited edition of the now iconic CHAMBERS in a custom Rainbow acetate in honor of PRIDE. “I posted a rendering of the CHAMBERS in rainbow colors on Instagram to celebrate and recognize the LGBTQ Community during PRIDE Month, and it got such an overwhelming response that we decided to produce it!”, says Kuwahara.

“With the lifting of COVID-related restrictions and a pent-up demand, retail is continuing gain traction buoyed by consumer optimism,” says Richard Mewha, President of Fade To Grey, the distributing company for Blake Kuwahara Eyewear.

Blake Kuwahara designs are available from leading independent opticians across Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire.

Kuwahara, the founder of the multi-disciplinary design agency, Focus Group West, first gained international acclaim as the creator and designer of the exclusive KATA Eyewear brand.  His groundbreaking use of engineering and production techniques together with his highly curated eye reinvented the way eyewear design is approached today.

Kuwahara’s bold experimentation and innovation have gained him a following in the fashion media and has been profiled in Vogue, ELLE, Bazaar, GQ, In Style, and Esquire and has been seen on E!, Access Hollywood, MTV, and CNN.  Buzzmagazine voted Kuwahara one of the “100 Coolest People in Los Angeles” and Detour magazine called him, “a gifted talent, blessed with savvy and unmistakable sense of style.”  

Kuwahara was recently named by Brilliant Magazine as one of the “100 Most Important People in the Eyewear Industry”. Kuwahara has also collaborated extensively on eyewear collections for John Varvatos, Carolina Herrera, Isaac Mizrahi, Behnaz Sarapfour, Hanae Mori, and Coach.

A celebrity favorite, Kuwahara’s designs are worn by Lil Nas X, Elton John, QuestLove, Brad Pitt, Sandra Bullock, Charlize Theron, Halle Berry, Robert Downey, Jr., Will Smith, Jeremy Piven, Samuel L. Jackson, Casey Affleck, Slash, and Gwyneth Paltrow among many others.

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Film & Theatre

Wycombe Swan Summer Youth Project is back for 2022

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Returning for the first time since 2019, this year sees the return of Wycombe Swan’s Summer Youth Project.

Returning for the first time since 2019, this year sees the return of Wycombe Swan’s Summer Youth Project. Running since 1993, numerous participants have gone on to have successful careers both on and off stage. Join us on our next adventure! Build confidence, develop skills, have fun, and make long-lasting friendships.

About Wycombe Swan Summer Youth Project (SYP)

Over the two-week project, Wycombe Swan comes alive to the sights and sounds of 150 young people doing everything they can to put on a full-scale musical in time for curtain up!

Participants have the option of taking to the stage as a performer, or to make magic happen as part of the Technical Team.

All performances take place on our main stage in the 1,000 seated Wycombe Swan Theatre.

Only those wishing to have a principal/speaking role or be a dance captain need to audition.

Wycombe Swan Summer Youth Project is back for 2022

Big Fish The Show

This year, the show is BIG FISH. Based on the novel by Daniel Wallace and the acclaimed film directed by Tim Burton.

AUDITIONS (FOR THOSE WISHING TO HAVE A SPEAKING ROLE): Sunday 22 May

DATES: Mon 15 to Sunday 28 August

AGES: 9-21 (performers). 14-21 (technical team)

PRICE: £190

It is our wish that no young person misses out due to financial constraints. For this reason, we offer bursaries of up to 100% so that anybody can take part.

TO APPLY, AND FOR MORE INFO: Visit https://wycombeswan.co.uk/Online/summerproject

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Friday 13 May

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