Local News                         2022


Scientists breed

designer wheat for

whisky distillers

A team of scientists from Rothamsted Research

have bred a type of wheat specifically to improve

whisky production.

The group’s lead researcher says this new wheat

will reduce the processing problems, higher energy

use, and wear on pumps caused by using current

wheat varieties.

Rothamsted’s Dr Rowan Mitchell said: “At present using wheat grain is a problem for distilleries because it causes sticky residues that mean the whole distillery must be shut down for cleaning.

“Our novel wheat is designed to have grain with low levels of soluble dietary fibre and should greatly decrease these problems. Great for making whisky, but the opposite to what’s required by bakers.”

He added that the development will also make UK grown wheat more desirable for use in whisky compared to imported maize, which is currently easier to process.

This new wheat line is one of the first wheat varieties in the world developed using ‘reverse genetics’ - where scientists start with knowledge of what a gene does, rather than screening for the trait in a plant first and then looking for which of its genes are responsible.

Their non-GM approach, called TILLING, allowed them to rapidly breed their gene of choice into an existing wheat variety – no easy task as wheat has six copies of each of its genes compared to only two copies of each in humans.

The group focused in on genes they discovered that controlled the amount of a chemical found in plant cell walls called arabinoxylan, responsible for soluble fibre levels and what determines its viscosity - whether the liquid extract is ‘thin’ like water, or ‘thick’ like honey.

By using traditional plant breeding methods, they created wheat lines where these genes had stopped working – referred to as ‘knock out’ or loss of function lines.

In these lines, the arabinoxylan molecules where both shorter and fewer in number, leading to a whisky-friendly wheat that produces a liquid extract between 50 and 80% less ‘gloopy’ compared to wheat without the knock-out genes.

Interestingly, the team saw that the plant responded to this change by increasing the bonds between the remaining arabinoxylan molecules, which helped it maintain the size and shape of its cells.

The group have a patent on the use of the gene for this application and are now working with plant breeding company Limagrain to develop a new commercial variety.

Co-author Dr Simon Berry, marker specialist at Limagrain, said: “There is going to be a pilot scale test on about a quarter of a tonne of grain at a distillery this year and we are aiming for an official trials entry within the next 5 years.

“Low viscosity wheat would strengthen the continued use of UK wheat in distilling and offer a solution to those distillers still using maize.”

Scotch production is an extremely important industry to the UK, worth about £5 bn per year.

The project, which also included the Scotch Whisky Research Institute, was funded by UKRI and Innovate UK.


Local help to tackle money worries

Mounting personal debt is an increasing problem as many of us struggle to pay bills because of the impact of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic on our finances.  There are high levels of debt on credit cards, and personal loans and not everyone can manage the repayments at the moment.

Help is at hand from Harpenden Money Advice Centre which is a charity providing confidential, non-judgemental and impartial debt and budgeting advice. This free local service from trained advisers, all volunteers, will look at how best to tackle your debts.

Manager of the charity Richard Payne said "Our team are here to help people look at their money problems and work with them to come up with an affordable plan, prioritising the most urgent payments and looking at what they can afford to repay.  Anyone can get into debt, and often it’s no fault of their own doing.  It could be a job loss, relationship breakdown, bereavement or other change in circumstances and it can be very hard to admit there is a problem.  But that is the first step to sorting it out.  We are still open during these strange times and can give help via Zoom or on the phone.  Do get in contact.  We are very friendly and just want to help."

One client told their story:

"Two years ago I felt I was drowning. I was making payments every month but then had no money for the remainder of the month and was then getting further loans to get through each month, increasing my debts and finding myself in a vicious cycle I couldn't get out of. I also needed to find somewhere else to live, as the tenancy on the place I was living in was running out. With your help and support not only did you arrange an affordable monthly plan with my creditors, but you also found me a new place to live.

I was at a point two years ago where I felt almost suicidal but thanks to you, I now see a light at the end of the tunnel and emotionally and mentally I have emerged from that black hole I was in. Thank you, without your help, I dread to think where I would now be."

To find out more contact Richard Payne on www.hmac.uk or call 07954 276281 email info@hmac.uk

Harpenden Money Advice Centre is a local charity supported by churches across Harpenden. All advisers are volunteers who freely give their time and are trained to the CMA Level 3 Award in Generalist Debt Advice, which has been "Money Advice Service" accredited at Advice Level.

Photo above of the HMAC team (Richard Payne is in the centre with the purple jumper)

THE HUB is more than a “cafe” to

Redbourn, its a “social” centre. 

By Simon Barnes.

Started 9 years ago, we hadn’t clue about Coffee

or Retail but Lindy & I agreed if we were going to

invest a lot of time and money in a new venture

we wanted it to be “special’.

We both enjoy sharing our passion and a good

chat with customers which led us to a coffee bar

for cyclists.

We took a short lease on a c1600 year building

to give it a go.

And it WENT !!

We took advice to ensure our coffee offering would be the best ever and opted for Allpress coffee, a NZ roasters with a roasterry in East London AND have all our Barritas trained by them in London.

We broadened customer base to anyone enjoying our style and coffee, added some REAL “homemade cakes “, Redbournbury Mill bread [including Zuckermaus) !

Lindy and I, (below) although being in our 70s, love the venture, introducing us to so many people, many becoming friends. Our staff are all local people and we are dog friendly.

We’d like to thank all our customers who have continued to support us during the year

Feb 9. 2022 Half of the shared ownership homes already sold off plan. The remaining 5 are still available. Register your interest here...shared ownership homes

Being delivered in partnership with appointed contractor Taylor French Developments Ltd, Roan Place will bring twelve homes for social rent, two for affordable rent and ten for shared ownership set in a quiet, landscaped cul-de-sac.


The homes include one-bedroom apartments and two-bedroom houses for shared ownership helping local people get on the housing ladder, and two- and three-bedroom houses for those on the housing register helping local families stay in the area. All homes have access to outdoor space with a garden or balcony along with parking for residents, visitors and for the neighboring allotments.


Councillor Lisa Scriven, Deputy Mayor of Harpenden, said:

‘I very much enjoyed the tour of Roan Place and it is really exciting to see this project nearing completion after many years of planning. My thanks go to Town Council staff, Councillors, Catalyst and Taylor French for their collaboration and hard work to reach this



Catalyst and Harpenden Local History Society name new road in tribute to local WWI fallen soldier

Working with Harpenden & District Local History Society and Harpenden Town Council, Catalyst has named a new road ‘Rolt Close’ after a local man who lost his life in the First World War.

Herbert Robert Rolt was born in Harpenden in 1898 and lived in the town with his parents. He went on to serve as a private in the 2nd Battalion Queens Royal West Surrey Regiment and was wounded in battle in Italy and was repatriated but sadly died of his wounds at the tender age of 20. He is buried in St Nicholas churchyard in the town.

Scroll down to see how the development has progressed and learn more about Herbert Robert Rolt.


Catalyst and Harpenden Local History Society name new road in tribute to local WWI fallen soldier

Working with Harpenden & District Local History Society and Harpenden Town Council, Catalyst has named a new road ‘Rolt Close’ after a local man who lost his life in the First World War.

Rolt Close will be the residential road on housing association Catalyst’s development of 24 affordable new homes at Roan Place, next to Westfield Recreation Ground in Harpenden, Hertfordshire, which is due to complete in December.

Herbert Robert Rolt was born in Harpenden in 1898 and lived in the town with his parents. He went on to serve as a private in the 2nd Battalion Queens Royal West Surrey Regiment and was wounded in battle in Italy and was repatriated but sadly died of his wounds at the tender age of 20. He is buried in St Nicholas churchyard in the town.

Also reflecting the town’s history, Catalyst has named the development Roan Place after the town’s link with horseracing. The 24 new homes at Roan Place will provide much-needed affordable high-quality new homes for social and affordable rent and shared ownership. The new homes will help local families on the housing register, and help people get on the housing ladder. The development will also provide allocated parking and an attractive landscaped environment.

Joe Marshall, Catalyst’s Managing Director for New Homes (Counties), said:

‘Reflecting an area’s history and people in the names of our developments is something that’s particularly important to us, and we’re honoured to be able to pay tribute to local hero Herbert Rolt through naming Rolt Close after him. As custodians of the new communities we build, incorporating and promoting local heritage into these plans is our responsibility and privilege, and provides a legacy for future generations.’

Autumn 2021.The Harpenden Society celebrates

the successful completion of the

Red House redevelopment.

Harpenden residents will be pleased  to know that the

Society efforts to save the Red House as a medical centre

in Harpenden have proved successful.

Ron Taylor was invited by Central London Community

Healthcare NHS Trust to see how this has been achieved.

The visit took place on Tuesday August 10th 2021.

The team who showed me round were:

Glenda Esmond - Clinical Adviser, CLCH.

Tim Pullen - Estates, CLCH

Sarah Camplin - Herts Valley CCG


I have been involved with the development concepts of the

Red House for many years. The Harpenden Society together

with County Councillor Teresa Heritage formed a ‘ginger’ group known as the Red House Forum to lobby for rejuvenation of the local services on the site then owned by the NHS. Ownership was transferred to Hertfordshire NHS Community Trust  (HCT) on April 1st 2015.

Over the next 4 years  a number of initiatives were developed with positive progress likely.  Optimism waned with the change of ownership on Oct 1st 2019 when CLCH took charge.

Andrew Ridley, CEO at CLCH said: "It’s an opportunity to deliver an integrated model of care that builds on our experience as an established healthcare provider in Hertfordshire , where we already provide  both  sexual health and respiratory  services  and adds to our significant expertise in delivering community services across eleven London Boroughs.

Kathryn Magson CEO at Herts Valley CCG said “CLCH are a well-established NHS organisation and already familiar with West Hertfordshire, as providers of integrated community respiratory care.

The Tour

So moving forward almost 2 years I wondered whether there would be another false dawn.

It was with some trepidation that I made my way along Carlton Road.

Arriving outside the imposing doorway I was greeted by Glenda Esmond who took me up the steps and into the entrance hall.

It was an amazing transformation, much more than I had expected. New flooring and lighting, freshly painted walls all leading to the reception area behind which was the outstanding stained glass window and at the side the original wooded staircase leading to the first floor. The architects had managed to maintain and integrate many of the classical features of the building with the new high tech design creating a satisfying balance between old and new.

I was introduced to the other team members (Tim Pullen - Estates, CLCH

Sarah Camplin - Herts Valley CCG) who continued the tour round all the individual rooms explaining what had been done and what services would be offered.

I was surprised to see several rooms being occupied with staff who were already engaging  with their work across the ground floor, first and second floors. It is a deceptively large building inside and will eventually have 50+ permanent staff.

The Stewarts unit  (on the right hand side of the site) previously owned by the HCT is now owned by a NHS Mental Trust, so that will be another story to unfold.

My tour concluded with an introduction to Leanne Fishwick the  Deputy Divisional Director who is working there.

I was more than impressed by the scale and quality of the redevelopment which will give Harpenden more medical facilities and services than those proposed by HCT with the Health and Wellbeing Centre. Plus the Red House building and it’s grounds have been protected from a housing development programme.

All in all a win win situation. Thank you CLCH

The essential work

New roof to extension; New fire alarm system; New boiler installed; New electrics

Development of Outpatients

Upgraded & increased number of clinic rooms in Red House & Hally Stewart Building from 4 to10

Red House - Podiatry, Heart Failure, Bladder & Bowel, Parkinson's Disease, Speech & Language, Frailty, Diabetes, Retinal screening, Acupuncture

Hally Stewart - ENT, Phlebotomy

Upgraded Friends Room to support clinical group activities

Cardiac Rehabilitation, Pulmonary Rehabilitation, Alcoholics Anonymous

CLCH Hertfordshire Corporate Staff Base

Development of 1st & 2nd floor of The Red House

Moved from Hemel One to Harpenden in November 2020

CLCH Neuro Rehabilitation Unit

Development of a purpose built Neuro Rehabilitation Unit for West Hertfordshire

Large Gym

5 clinic rooms to support outpatient services for patients with long term neurological conditions provided by Nurses, Therapists & Psychologists

Moved from Langley House in May 2021

ONGOING involvement by The Harpenden Society. They will continue to monitor progress as we expect them to have a long term realistic plan for the whole site, including knitting together all the rather bitty clinical services into a well being hub.

Barclays Bank update.

Reduced opening hours and reduced staffing levels suggest Barclays have already reviewed their presence in Harpenden (despite reassuring words from their Head of Corporate Relations South West-below).

The obvious conclusion being that they do have plans to close their Harpenden branch.

That’s bad news for their customers who will lose the personal service they have enjoyed for many years.

The good news for the High Street is that the planning application granted to the property owner has been approved for 3 retail units in the space occupied by Barclays. Demand for retail space in the town is still high and it is expected that new tenants will soon be advised.

Harpendia will keep you updated.

New affordable Homes in Harpenden adjacent to Westfield Recreation Ground. Work started in 2021.

Jan 24. Barclays Bank to stay in Harpenden.

Barclays head office responded last week (Jan 21st) with:

A Barclays spokesperson said: “Although we do review our branches on an ongoing basis, we can confirm that we have no current plans to close Barclays Harpenden branch.”

 Best wishes,

Julia Husband | Head of Corporate Relations South West | Barclays

Planning permission also allows the owners to change the use of part of the first and second floors to provide five additional flats, bringing the total number of flats to nine.


Local District Council from

May 25th

Who you need to contact:

Councillor Chris White (right) has been

re-elected as Leader of St Albans

City and District Council for the

coming year.

Seven other Lead Councillors,

who have prime responsibility

for a number of Council services and activities, were also appointed.

Chris White – Leader and Chair of the Policy Committee: climate emergency, tree strategy, air quality, electric vehicle strategy, planning, building control and relations with other public bodies in Hertfordshire.

Helen Campbell – Deputy Leader and Chair of the Public Realm Committee: parks and open spaces, car parks and parking, sport and leisure contracts, cemeteries, playgrounds and street cleaning.

Allison Wren – Vice-Chair of the Public Realm Committee: waste management and recycling, museums and public toilets.

Paul De Kort – Vice-Chair of the Policy Committee: Council Tax and Business Rates, the budget, financial strategy, customer services and IT.

Jacqui Taylor – Chair of the Housing Committee: social housing, homeless strategy, sheltered accommodation and emergency planning.

Sarwar Shamser – Vice-Chair of the Housing Committee: equality, diversity and inclusion strategy, asylum seekers and refugees, welfare benefits, community grants, the community lottery and the Access Forum.

Robert Donald – Chair of the Regeneration and Business Committee and Vice-Chair of the City Neighbourhoods Committee: commercial and development strategy, large capital projects, infrastructure and property and asset management.

Danny Clare – Vice-Chair of the Regeneration and Business Committee: economic development, the night-time economy, relations with St Albans BID, the visitor partnership, culture strategy, licensing and markets.

Exhibition at EMC Sept 21 by Legal & General

550 new homes planned for North West Harpenden in new approach by land owners. (LEGAL&GENERAL)

The Proposals

•  Up to 550 new homes of which 168 affordable, and 130 integrated retirement living

• Community hub including restaurant, gym, and an early years setting all overlooking a public square with opportunities for work hub, community meetings etc.

• Over 11ha of new public open space including additional play areas to meet local need

  1. New junior sports pitches and pavilion +Targeting over 40% biodiversity net gain

The Exhibition

The Eric Morecambe Centre was the venue on Wed Sept 21 for the Exhibition about the North West Harpenden development by Legal & General. It attracted a large audience between 3pm - 7pm who viewed the display panels and questioned staff.

Despite some realistic criticisms the position from the representatives present seemed to be “we will let events following this consultation take its course” > Attendees could complete a Feedback Form on the day or go online.

The comments below reflect a broad consensus of views.

Harpenden Green Belt Association. L&G should wait for your District Council to complete its 'Local Plan' which will take into account, in a coordinated and considered way, inter alia, new house building across the District.

A senior L&G official confirmed at the Exhibition that L&G has simply lost patience with our District Council and L&G is not willing to wait until our 'Local Plan' is completed.

The Local Plan process is supposed to enable an evidence-led, holistic assessment as to what development is required in the District, where it is best located and what infrastructure is required to support it.

L&G's profit driven decision to 'plough ahead' regardless is a recipe for disaster for our District's already crowded road network but in many other respects too, like schooling and medical services.


A spokesperson for the new Stop L&G local campaign group told us: “It is already clear that L&G’s plan is hugely unpopular with local residents . We did not find a single attendee who supported the proposal. On the contrary most of them asked to join our fast-growing campaign group. They all thought that L&G are trying to whitewash over the many issues with their plan and create the impression it is a ‘done deal’. However we believe that the fact they are rushing this through before a new Local Plan shows how worried they are that it will not stand up to proper scrutiny and we will ensure that Harpenden residents fight this all the way.”

The Harpenden Society have expressed their total opposition to the project and have submitted a response via the official consultation. Key points raised:

Excess traffic would be generated on an already crowed A1081

The alternative options of travelling into town via bus, walking & cycling would be impractical

There would be a loss of valuable green belt land

There was a lack of infrastructure development to support this growing population.

The Society's response to the consultation by L&G can be downloaded by clicking here.

A local resident with professional experience in big build projects made several insightful criticisms. One in particular concerned the proposed cycle routes: The enhancement of the two cycle routes is welcomed but more detail is required on how these are to be delivered as the majority of the route is outside the site boundary.

NB. This phase of the consultation closed on Sept 28th. Responses to the consultation will be assessed and further actions announced in due course.

July 2022. The building has now halted. Their website now states….Taylor French Developments Ltd are subject to a Moratorium pursuant to Part A1 of the Insolvency Act 1986 is in force in relation to the company.

Other plots are being sold with no building work being started


Improvements planned at Harpenden’s Station, Harding Parade and Station Road.

Herts County Council in conjunction with Rail Industry partners are planning significant improvements to this area. A full consultation will be issued for feed back on the proposals.

What improvement worksare proposed?

The main interventions proposed are:

• A redesigned station forecourt providing a

new pedestrianised square with trees and

space for resting

• A new bike hub with increased number of

cycle storage spaces

• Relocated taxi rank with dedicated pick-up/

drop-off area with sheltered waiting space.

• Redesigned public realm at Harding Parade

Figure 1 Introduction

with flush planters, mature trees, benches and bike


• Relocated bus stops on Station Road, closer to the

railway station

• Two redesigned junctions on raised table, first

between Station Approach and Station road with four

pedestrian crossings, the second between Station Road and Arden Grove.

New contract for management for Eric Morecambe Centre and the Leisure Centre in Rothamsted Park starting Nov 1st

A new management contract for eight major sports and cultural centres in St Albans District has been awarded.

St Albans City and District Council has agreed a ten-year deal with Sport and Leisure Management (SLM) trading under the brand name Everyone Active.

The company already operates Westminster Lodge and the Cottonmill Community and Cycling Centre on the Council’s behalf.

It will now take over six other Council-owned facilities that have been run by another leisure contractor, including the Alban Arena and Harpenden’s Eric Morecambe Centre.

The other venues are Batchwood Golf Course and Sports Centre, Abbey View Golf Course and Athletics Track, Cotlandswick Leisure Centre and Harpenden Leisure Centre.

Sept 20. Timetable for St Albans District’s Local Plan announced.

The Local Plan (LP) will identify land for future housing, commercial and infrastructure developments over the next 15 years.

It will also be used to safeguard the environment, enable adaptation to climate change and secure high-quality and accessible design.

St Albans City and District Council has set out a schedule that gives a provisional date of December 2025 for the adoption of a new LP.

Councillor Chris White, the Council Leader and the Advisory Group’s Chair, said afterwards: “The production of a Local Plan is one of the most challenging, complex and important tasks that a local authority has to undertake.

“We have been working hard behind the scenes to recruit the extra specialist staff that we require and can now move on to the next steps.

“The timetable with its ambitious adoption deadline of December 2025 will give us a schedule that we will seek to follow. It demonstrates to our residents that we are committed to working at pace to getting a Local Plan in place.”

Three planners have been recruited for new LP roles and all should be in post next month to carry out preparatory work, much of which is already underway.

This will involve gathering data and compiling reports on key issues such as housing, employment, sustainability and the environment.

In July next year, the Council will undertake what is known as the Regulation 18 Consultation which is due to run across three months.

During this phase, the views and proposals of residents, community groups, businesses, landowners, property developers and other stakeholders will be sought.

After considering all representations, the Council will produce a proposed draft LP which will then be published and open to consultation from July to September 2024.


After all feedback is considered, the Council is scheduled to submit its LP in December 2024 to the Secretary of State who will appoint an independent Planning Inspector.

The Inspector will hold a public examination to assess if it is sound and that should happen at some point between December 2024 and November the following year.

If it passes the examination, Full Council will be asked to adopt it in December 2025.

Cllr White added: “Throughout the process, we will be consulting intensively with the community to gauge their views.

“It is essential that we produce a Local Plan that truly reflects our residents’ needs and aspirations, so we will want to hear from as many of them as possible when the consultations start.”

The Harpenden Society will be involved going forward to look after the interests of Harpenden residents.

Sept 29.Harpenden’s reactions to Legal & General’s plans for 550 new homes.

New contract for management for Eric Morecambe Centre and the Leisure Centre in Rothamsted Park starting Nov 1st

The contract, which is due to start on Tuesday 1 November, was awarded after a competitive tender with two other companies making bids.

Councillor Helen Campbell, Chair of the Public Realm Committee, said: “The process for deciding the management contract for our leisure facilities was rigorous and exhaustive.

“We were determined to get the best possible deal for our residents and I believe we have done that with our comprehensive partnership with Everyone Active.

“One major change is that the management of our sports centres will no longer be split between two contractors. The great advantage for residents of having a sole contractor is that they will be able to use all the sporting facilities with one membership card.

“Previously, for example, anyone wanting to regularly use the gym at Cotlandswick and swim at Westminster Lodge had to take out and pay for two memberships."

As part of the contract, SLM will undertake an 18-month programme of improvements to the facilities including the refurbishment of gyms and works to enhance the energy efficiency of buildings.

They will also expand their Active Communities scheme that aims to improve the health and wellbeing of all members of the community including older people.

Staff who work on the six sites run by the other leisure contractor will be transferred to SLM.

The decision to partner with SLM was made by the Public Realm Committee at its June meeting on the recommendation of its Leisure Procurement Working Party.

The Council worked closely with external advisors The Sports Consultancy, recommended by Sport England owing to their expertise in the field, throughout the tender process which began in September 2021.

Cllr Campbell added: “In deciding the contract, we evaluated both the commercial and technical aspects of the three bids. SLM offered the most financially advantageous bid and also excelled in terms of the quality of service and innovation.

“We look forward to collaborating with them in the years ahead to further enhance our sports and cultural centres which are among our most important community assets, greatly valued by our residents.”

Leicestershire-based SLM has partnerships with more than 60 local authorities across England, managing in excess of 200 leisure centres.

Duncan Jefford, Regional Director of Everyone Active, said: “We are delighted to be extending our work with St. Albans City and District Council as we believe leisure and cultural facilities are pivotal in providing a wide range of services to the community.

“We want the community to view our leisure centres and theatres as community hubs and will work hard to engage and educate people from all backgrounds in not only physical activity, but also arts and cultural activity.

“The new contract includes significant investments that will help to create improved opportunities for people. I am delighted that we have been chosen to support these visions.”

Everyone Active will contact all members of the leisure centres not currently under their management to inform them of how their membership will be transferred.

Nov 4.  SURVEY NOW CLOSED. Have your say on a new eco-friendly car parking strategy for Harpenden & St Albans District

The strategy will provide a plan for managing

public car parks owned by St Albans City and

District Council and on-street parking over

the next five years.

It has four key goals including tackling the

climate emergency and improving accessibility.

plus measures to reduce carbon emissions

and encourage eco-friendly transport.

Councillor Helen Campbell, the Committee’s

Chair, said

“We want it to meet the needs of all our residents including those with mobility issues. We also want it to support the

local economy, provide visitors with a positive experience and tackle the climate emergency.Projects put forward in the strategyfor tackling climate change include introducing electric vehicle charging

points at car parks and promoting car clubs.

Proposals to improve enforcement when motorists park inconsiderately or

illegally include targeting congestion caused by parking outside schools and identifying hotspot areas for illegal parking.

To better meet the needs of disabled and older people, the Council is looking to review current parking place designations.

Oct. 18

What are ‘Stop Legal & General’ are saying about the North West Harpenden development.

In a nutshell the infrastructure risks of such a massive green belt development can only be properly assessed as part of the new Local Plan, and L&G should wait for that rather than trying to rush this through. There are significant potential local impacts on traffic, parking, schooling, healthcare provision, water and sewage.

The Stop L&G campaign are looking for donations to commission an independent traffic report as the first step towards understanding the impact 550+ new houses will have on Harpenden and local areas - see www.stoplandg.com for more details and to donate.

Whatever your position on the need for more housing, if approved this development will affect everyone in Harpenden and local areas and wreak havoc on our already strained services, schools and infrastructure. L&G are looking to fast track this application outside the proper scrutiny of a local plan.

Alan Jackson of Lambourn Gardens (Pictured centre on the field behind Bloomfield Rd) said “Local residents like myself are concerned that this plan will have huge implications for the whole of Harpenden and also for those from neighbouring areas who commute into Harpenden from the north. Over 1,000 extra cars pouring into Harpenden along the already jam-packed Luton Road could cause it and residential roads on both sides to completely seize up with ‘rat running’ at peak times. And that is not to mention the negative impact on already-full local schools, GP surgeries and other infrastructure.” 

Oct 21. L&G and the Future of Harpenden


Dear Member,

The Harpenden Greenbelt Association would like to bring your attention to a new campaign to ensure that Legal and General are not going to ruin Harpenden.


The residents involved in ‘Stop L&G’ are a talented, energetic and well-informed group who are absolutely determined to fight for Harpenden’s future.


Their latest newsletter, which can be accessed by clicking here, sets out the situation very clearly and I invite you to consider it and decide whether you want to offer them your support.


I hope you will.

Thank you,

David Rankin. Chairman. The Harpenden Greenbelt Association


Nov 4. Affordable Homes site back in development at Roan Place, Harpenden.

The Peabody Group are now in contract with ME Construction Ltd to deliver this much-needed all-affordable scheme of 24 homes. ME Construction have had presence on site since September.  We are currently anticipating handover of the scheme in its entirety in Winter 2022/23. Most of our Rented Homes on this development are allocated to prospective residents, and most of the Shared Ownership homes are reserved as well.

A much needed development in Harpenden

Scroll down to read the background to the development.