NEW YEAR in Harpenden


Jan. Xmas Recipes Competition winners & recipes.

Jan 12. 3G Pitch Opening event at Katherine Warington School with Luton’s Mick Harford and Annie Brewster + hundreds of school pupils.

On Friday 12th January 2024, the Katherine Warington School Community Pitch, our new artificial pitch, was officially opened by some special guests: Mick Harford, the former LTFC player, manager and ex England international, Annie Brewster, who has worked at parish, district, and county council level for over 15 years and Dr Tom Gilham, a local GP partner.

A collaboration between Katherine Warington School, Wheathampsted Wanderers, the Football Foundation, and Watford FC Community, the new pitch will be enjoyed not only by KWS students but by the wider community for multiple sports, all year round.

Our guests spoke about how fortunate the students and local residents are to have such a fantastic facility on their doorstep.  Mick Harford commented that “sport changes lives for the better” and urged students to make the most of the pitch, which he said “is going to be an incredible success”. Mick also said, “Sport and exercise also brings people together especially when it’s introduced in your formative years, it builds relationships which last a lifetime”

Annie Brewster commented that, “She was delighted the school, plus its wider community, now had access to this fantastic facility having originally campaigned for the school to have a 3G when it was built”. Annie looks forward to working with the school in her new role as High Sherrif of Hertfordshire later in the year.

After the official cutting of the ribbon, some selected students were invited to take part in a penalty shootout with Mick Hartford. Benjamin Mupita, a KWS student said, “It was amazing to be playing with Mick Harford. It was lots of fun and I really enjoyed myself.” Isobel James, a KWS student said, “I enjoyed using the new astro to play football with Mick Harford very much as it gave me an opportunity to use this wonderful facility and understand how it would be used in the future.”

The school was also delighted to be able to raise funds for Prostate Cancer UK as part of the event and currently has a Just Giving page running   ( At the ceremony, a cheque for £1,000 was presented following a donation from Academia Technology Group.


David Martin, Headteacher gave thanks for the dedication of Dean Inns, School Business Manager, and Tony Smith as well as to the incredible contribution of so many in the local community who have worked tirelessly together to support this project and make it a reality.

Left to Right -

Jasleen Nagi,

Annie Brewster,

Harry Hare,

Dean Inns,

David Martin,

Mick Harford,

Dr Tom Gillham,

Jenny Howarth and

Tony Smith.

Left to Right -

Annie Brewster,

Dr Tom Gillham,

Joe Kelly,

Mark McCormack,

Mick Harford,

David Martin and

Dean Inns.

Above: KWS Students and Mick Harford

Below; Live action on the new 3G pitch

Video camera in action recoding official speeches in the KWS main hall

Jan 20. Great news for Harpenden businesses.  Any Harpenden (& surrounding areas) business can access/attend STANTA’s workshops – at no cost! For businesses over 5 years old, it’s only £50 for a 2 hour workshop.

STANTA (St Albans Enterprise Agency) has been supporting the advice and skills needs of the local business community for 40 years. It works with a team of respected, specialist practitioners to deliver a series of practical workshops to help local businesses enhance their skill sets.

It has recently announced that it has launched a Digital Skills Hub to establish and improve Digital Skills which will help local  business to compete in the ever more difficult economy.


The Hub will provide a wide, and evolving range of digital workshops for businesses in St Albans, Harpenden and surrounding areas.


For start-up clients and businesses that have been trading for less than 5 years, it offers places at workshops for no charge. This is made possible through funding from Herts LEP.


More established businesses in the area can attend the workshops for a small charge.


The digital workshop list is constantly evolving to reflect this dynamic environment, but currently includes: Introduction to Podcasting, Generating more sales from websites (& SEO), Setting up a Google profile, How to use Chat GPT in Business, A practical guide to using Facebook for Business… and many more.


Commenting on the launch, STANTA Executive Director Steve Bedford said:


“We are aware that many young businesses require guidance on the ever- expanding digital skill sets. We work with established practitioners to provide practical guidance on utilising different platforms and the functionality they provide. As one of the most established and respected providers in the St Albans and Harpenden area, we are sure that the sessions run through our digital hub will be very popular.”


Workshops are mostly held in STANTA’s conference room, but some are online. 


For further information please contact STANTA on 01727 837760 or visit

Planning permission secured for new Skatepark in Harpenden

Harpenden Town Council, together with local charity Playpark Action Rothamsted Committee (PARC), is celebrating another step towards Rothamsted Park’s Skatepark redevelopment with the news that planning permission has been granted.

The redevelopment is badly needed as the current skatepark is at the end of its life. Designs accommodating the need for an inviting and inclusive space, with good wheelchair access, features for all abilities and ages, and suitability for different users including skateboards, BMX bikes, WCMX (adapted wheelchairs), scooters and roller skates, were agreed earlier this year.

With designs approved and planning permission agreed, PARC continue to fundraise to ensure the vision becomes a reality. The overall budget for the new Skatepark is £250,000, with Harpenden Town Council committing £100K, and the remainder relying on local fundraising. PARC is making progress with fundraising but needs more help from local people and businesses.

Cllr Fiona Gaskell, Mayor of Harpenden, said,

“News that planning permission has now been secured for the new skatepark is extremely exciting. This is an important redevelopment benefiting a wide-ranging demographic, particularly Harpenden’s young people and their families. The Town Council is delighted to be working in partnership with PARC and we thank them for their continued hard work and dedication.”

PARC, originally set up in 2018 by local parents and grandparents, formed a partnership with the Town Council and successfully raised funds to redevelop Rothamsted Park’s playpark, and is following a similar model for this project. PARC representative Rod Cooley said,

“With planning permission now in place, the only barrier to building the Rothamsted Skatepark is the funding.  PARC has been working hard to obtain funds but we still have a substantial amount to raise to reach our target.  To help us do this, residents can donate £100 and have their name or a message inscribed on a paver that will be laid on the path from the Leisure Centre to the Skatepark.  Just 200 pavers are available! Furthermore, PARC is appealing to local businesses to sponsor the skatepark with donations of any amount gratefully received.  A £2,500 donation will secure a place on the sponsor board to be located by the skatepark illustrating business' support of this great community project. Details about these and any donation can be found on our webpage

The new advertising campaign launched this week reminds residents and visitors to Rothamsted Park that skateparks are a place for people of all ages and abilities to socialise, exercise outdoors, learn and enjoy local green spaces. Skateparks are unique in providing an alternative, worthwhile, outdoor meeting area.

For more information, please visit email: or call 07955 027524.