News Round Up  2024/23

    Scroll down to read all the exciting editorials below


Harpenden population 32,500+

Harpenden’s 3 GP Surgeries registered patients = 43,274.

What’s going on??

A chance visit to the NHS Choices web site on May 6 revealed the following registered patient numbers:

Village Surgery = 15,983

The Elms = 14,749

Davenport House = 12,542

SO if the numbers are accurate where do all these people live? (Redbourn and Wheathampsted have their own surgeries.

OR are the numbers duplicated OR are they simply out of date?

WELL, on average GP Surgeries are funded at £136 per patient so the numbers generate high income.

THE average number of patient visits per year is 7 giving a cost per visit of £19.42.

YES it’s obvious that very young patients and elderly patients have more than the average number of visits.

These figures do not cover the prescription costs.

AND YES we know averages disguise the actual numbers BUT something is amiss?

WITH more and more homes bing built in Harpenden how will GP Surgeries cope with this  influx?

More to come on this story.

Feb. 2022.

New Garden Town planned close to Harpenden

A massive project described in detail in ‘A Spatial Vision’

Hemel Garden Communities (HGC) is an ambitious development programme that will transform Hemel Hempstead and create attractive and sustainable new neighbourhoods and communities to the north and east of Hemel Hempstead, through the delivery of more than 11,000 new homes ( That will be 30,000 + people) and 10,000 new jobs by 2050. Many of these jobs will be in Hertfordshire Innovation Quarter, a new business park with a range of facilities including flexible office and industrial spaces, and a variety of amenities to serve the local community.

The whole project will be part of a Dacorum Borough Council scheme on land within their boundary. providing a variety of benefits to Hemel Hempstead.

These include new high-quality homes, of which 40 per cent will be affordable. New neighbourhoods will be set around vibrant local centres, green spaces and play areas, all easily accessed on foot. Sustainable travel such as walking, cycling and public transport will be given priority as we target a greener, healthier environment, which includes open spaces as well as new country and district parks.

A priority for Hemel Garden Communities is to accelerate a shift to public and active transport and increase the share of journeys taken by cycling and walking, and providing high quality infrastructure to support the creation of new homes and jobs.

HGC partners – Dacorum Borough Council, St Albans City and District Council, Hertfordshire County Council, Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership - are working with The Crown Estate and other landowners to deliver the HGC programme.

Phillipa Zieba (right) has been appointed to the role

of Programme Director.  Phillipa brings with her a

wealth of experience, from her previous role as

Head of Planning at Hammerson, with a strong

track record of delivering masterplans and a range

of high profile mixed-use projects. Cllr Chris White,

Chair of the HGC Delivery Board (also Council

leader of SADC)

said: “I am delighted that we have recruited someone of Phillipa’s calibre to the role of programme director and welcome her to the team.

ONE KEY CHALLENGE (of which there are many)

Although Hemel’s neighbourhoods will be used as model for growing and regenerating the town, certain aspects of them will need to be significantly modified to meet twenty-first century challenges. The challenges to be met are tackling car dependency, responding to large portions of the housing stock aging at the same time, and diversifying local centres. Development of new neighbourhoods will also need to ensure that places and communities are integrated with each other and with established neighbourhoods.

Read ‘A Spatial Vision’ and you will be amazed at the detailed progamme already devised. The Spatial Vision is a high-level document that provides a series of aspirations for the future of HGC.

  Hemel Garden Communities Spatial Vision (PDF 11MB).


How will this affect Harpenden?

How will this affect SADC’s Local Plan?

Follow Harpendia for answers

Harpenden Child Contact Centre

A safe place for children to meet their non-resident parent.

Sadly when relationships break down

sometimes the children get caught up in

the middle and contact between the child

and their non-resident parent stops or

reduces. Our aim is to provide a safe

and friendly environment where the

children can see their parents and

hopefully we can help to rebuild trust

between the parents.  

Can you help children from separated families to keep in touch with both parents?

HCCC  Trustees are looking for a new Co-ordinator/Team Leader to provide good leadership to our teams of volunteers and an effective service for families.

This is an immensely rewarding role, and if you are interested and would like to discuss it further, please contact our Coordinator Ken Brennan on 07913 761167

Based at All Saints’ Church and Hall at the

bottom of Station Rd.

Open on the 2nd & 4th Saturdays each month

from !.00pm - 4.00pm

Learn more:

A NEW social housing strategy for St Albans District inc Harpenden

The Council is the biggest provider of social housing in the District having over 4,500 properties. Councillor Jacqui Taylor, the Committee’s Chair, said: “I am delighted we have agreed a new housing strategy which maps the way forward for our future work. “The strategy combines two of our major priorities – providing more social housing in the District and tackling the climate emergency.

It includes five key commitments to tackle the issues of housing need and demand. These pledge the Council to:

Deliver new housing that meet the needs of the social housing register.

Promote sustainability and energy efficiency at its properties.

Ensure an efficient supply of temporary accommodation.

Support the production of a new Local Plan, which identifies land for future housing, to maximise the delivery of affordable housing.

Meet the accommodation needs of vulnerable people.

The strategy, which can be viewed here, provides a guide for the Council’s future housing activities and policies over the next three years.

Anyone wishing to make a comment can do so here with the strategy due to be reviewed later this year when all feedback will be considered.


The district is also surrounded by Green Belt. This presents a challenge when it comes to boosting the long term supply of housing to meet the needs of the residents of the district. The number of new affordable housing properties delivered across the district in the past 3 years is detailed below:

2019/2020. 121 homes.  2020/2021.  158 homes   2021/2022 ,  71  homes

New Council houses in Sandridge built on a former garage site.

Home Library Service

from Your Local Library.

A NEW FREE service for

people who are unable to

get to the library.

You can use the service if:

*You have a physical disability which

  prevents you from travelling to a library building

*You have a learning disability or mental health condition that makes it difficult for you to leave home alone

*You're registered blind (severely sight impaired)

*You're frail or in poor health which means you can't get to a library

*You're a carer looking after someone affected by any of the above, and your caring responsibilities prevent you from getting to the library.

How the Home Library Service works.

*The Service (HLS) is delivered by volunteers to customers who have a dedicated Home Library Service account with access to the Hertfordshire and consortium collections.

*A volunteer will have a chat with the customer to gather information around the customers tastes and then select either print books or talking books on the customer’s behalf and bring them to their place of residence.

*When finished the Items will be collected by the volunteer and returned to the Library.

*There are no late charges applied to Home Library Service users – Just a friendly reminder when your books are due to be returned. Access to talking books is also free of charge.

The service can be tailored to work in several ways specific to the needs of individuals, for instance:

*Customers can select items for themselves using our catalogue and have items dropped off and collected by our volunteer.

*Or it could be a combination of both with volunteers collecting items for return when they drop off new books.

Another little-known service provided by the library that may be of some interest to small community groups is their ‘Reminiscence Boxes’ Collection.

This collection can help individuals remember past and shared experiences, the subjects are very varied, examples include A Smelling Box, A Memory Box and a Conversation Starter Box!

It is a free service, and you would request these from your local library.

Browse our catalogue from the link below.

Please contact your local library if you require any further information, or if you know anyone who may be interested these services.

Contacting the Police in Non Emergency situations.

A chance for changes and give your views. Harpenden residents can respond to a questionnaire. so David Lloyd our Police and Crime Commissioner for Hertfordshire can assess your views.

Maybe the return of a real officer at an

open Police Station in Vaughan Rd.

Read the full story below. with the

link to respond.

Residents are being asked how they contact the

police in non-emergency situations and what

changes they would like to see and why.

The Police and Crime Commissioner for

Hertfordshire, David Lloyd wants to hear

from the public on how they rate contact

with the Constabulary in terms of visibility

and accessibility.

Results from the survey will be used to review the public’s experience of using non-emergency contact channels and use it to help design future services that are attuned to local need. They could also lead to the introduction of new video chat facilities in a private place in a public building.

The survey will enable residents and those who work in Hertfordshire to provide feedback on their preferred way of contacting the police in non-emergency situations that do not require a 999 call, such as when there is no imminent danger, a crime has taken place but is no longer in process, or the matter does not require an immediate police response.

Among the current channels of contact are: the Herts Police website, webchat or police social media platforms, calling 101, emailing the police Safer Neighbourhood Team, or making an appointment to see an officer or PCSO at your home or at a police station.

Respondents will also be asked whether the method of contact they used was their preferred method and to rate their experience.

Mr Lloyd said: “As a firm believer in local policing, I have ensured that a strong neighbourhood policing model has been maintained across the county, with each of our ten districts or boroughs having at least one operational station.

“Some of these have open front counter services, but at all of them appointments can be made in advance to speak to local officers.  While some people prefer face-to-face contact there are lots of different ways to contact the Constabulary including online and by calling 101.

“This survey gives us an opportunity to review our existing engagement channels with communities and ensure that they are best attuned to their needs and continue to deliver excellent customer service. I want to hear from the public to find out how the current non-emergency contact systems are working for them, where it can be improved and what else they would like to see. It should be easy convenient for people to contact the police so officers can listen and respond accordingly.”

“My office is working with the Constabulary to deliver an excellent public contact service for those who live and work in Hertfordshire. Please take the time to complete the survey to help us deliver engagement channels that meet your expectations.” 


The questionnaire NOW CLOSED

April 2024. Harpenden’s Travel Agency are on hand to talk to you in person on the Harpenden High Street . Well, in their Agency actually, at The Forresters.

Council gains £173,000 grant to make Harpenden leisure centre more energy efficient

A grant of £173,000 has been obtained to make Harpenden Leisure Centre more energy efficient, reduce bills and cut harmful emissions.

The money will be used to fit solar panels to the building which has almost 4,000 members and was opened three years ago.

St Albans City and District Council, which owns the centre, applied for the grant along with its leisure contractor Everyone Active.

The award comes from the Government’s Swimming Pool Support Fund which is supported by the National Lottery.

The Council will now put a contract out to tender for the purchase and installation of the eco-friendly panels.

They will not generate enough electricity to ensure the energy-intensive centre is self-sufficient, but will reduce bills and emissions with the Council committed to becoming net zero by 2030.

Chris Traill, the Council’s Strategic Director for Community and Place Delivery, said: “Harpenden Leisure Centre has been a wonderful success story, helping people to be healthy and physically active.

“Pools in particular, though, are energy intensive and the huge increases we have seen in energy prices have presented us with considerable financial challenges.

“We are delighted that the bid we made with our partners, Everyone Active, was accepted and the grant will see a significant cut in both bills and emissions in future years to the benefit of our residents.”

Steve Cox, Everyone Active Area Contract Manager, said: “We are delighted the Council has been successful in obtaining funding and it is great news that this project will further reduce the centre’s carbon footprint.


“As a result of the energy crisis, we have seen our energy bills more than double. The implementation of the solar panels at Harpenden Leisure Centre marks a significant step towards reducing its carbon footprint and simultaneously lowering energy costs. Everyone Active is proud to work alongside the Council as part of our Net Zero Strategy to help achieve our company’s net zero ambitions.”


April 10. Station Road closed for a few days whilst Thames Water replace the Mains.

Action accomplished thanks to the efforts of the owner of Molasses House gallery.

He commented - Thames Water have been amazing unlike the incompetence and complete disinterest of Herts County Council.