May newsletter

Letchmore Heath Village Newsletter
2nd May

What’s on in May

Friday 5th Village bus
Saturday 7th: Plant sale and compost giveaway
Tuesday 10th Business networking
Wednesday 11th Village social
Friday 12th Village bus
Friday 12th LH Police surgery?
Friday 19th Village bus
Friday 26th Village bus

Book club: To find out which book the book club is reading for its June meeting, please contact Lorraine Oliver on 855527 or

Business Networking event: this will be held in the pub on Tuesday 10th May. If you run or are involved in a local small business or are looking for local products and services, it’s a great way to network.

Village social: the regular village social will be on Wednesday 11th May in the pub. All welcome.

Village bus: as always, the village bus will leave the pub at 9.45 on a Friday morning and will collect from Watford at 12.15, returning to the village at 12.30. Don’t forget, the pub will be open from 9.30 for bus drivers and passengers to enjoy a cup of coffee before setting out for Watford.

Local Policing: Tim Conway, our local bobby, will be carrying out Beat Surgeries on 12th May (we think) at The Three Horseshoes 0915-0945.

Planning applications: there are two new planning applications for Letchmore Heath:
· Land to the rear of Redwood Lodge, Grange Lane, and
· Aragon Coach House, Back Lane

To view these, go to your village web site on click on the village trust then click planning applications and follow the link instructions. Should you wish to comment on either you need to contact HBC planning department before 10th May

FREE COMPOST: Want to get your hands on some free compost? Then come along to Hertsmere’s free compost giveaway in May.

We’ve teamed up with our green waste recycling company Agrivert to give away 10 tonnes of nutrient-rich compost on Saturday 7 May at Newberries car park in Radlett.

Residents can pop along between 8am and midday (or until its gone!) with empty compost bags or rubble sacks to get them filled – for free! But that’s not all, you’ll also be able to off-load any unwanted vegetable and flower seeds, as well as garden tools, to hopefully swap them for ones you do want!

Don’t worry if you don’t have anything to swap, come along anyway to find out about home composting and to pick up some recycling freebies.

Did you know you can compost at home with a compost bin? Around 30% of a household’s waste can be recycled by composting fruit and vegetable peelings, shredded or scrunched up paper, cardboard, pet hair and even the contents of your vacuum cleaner. Composting helps divert waste from landfill and also helps your garden grow.

Compost will be issued on a first come, first served basis, and limited to four bags per household.

For more information please visit Recycle for Hertsmere’s Facebook page – – or our website

News from Radlett Horticultural Society:
1. Our popular Spring Plant Sale will take place on Saturday, 7 May at 2.00pm until 3.00pm at the Scout Hut in Scrubbitts Park Road. Entry fee 20p. Donations of plants will be gratefully received and should be brought to the Scout Hut between 9am and 12noon. They should be potted and labelled (we will price them). No bare rooted plants please. There will be a large selection of bedding plants for sale. We can provide a delivery service for those within the Parish who are unable to carry their purchases home for a charge of £2. The Trefoil Guild will have teas and cakes for sale.

2. The next talk takes place at 8.00pm on Wednesday, 18 May 2016 at the Vision Hall adjacent to Christ Church, Radlett. The subject of the talk is “All you need to know about clematis and how to grow them” by Pauline and Gerald Greenway from Priorswood Clematis Nursery in Ware. There will be an opportunity to purchase clematis during the evening. We shall have a break for refreshments and the entrance fee will be £2 as usual. We look forward to seeing you there.

Save the Date – Midsummer’s Night Picnic, Saturday 18th June
The Aldenham War Memorial Hall committee is planning a village picnic on (nearly) midsummer’s night. Please keep the date free. More details will be forthcoming nearer the time.

Sad News
As you may already know, Edna Kitchen, who lived in Kampen Kot on The Green, passed away a couple of weeks ago. The following is based mainly on the address given by her son, Simon, at her funeral last week.
Edna was born in 1921 (and, we believe, moved to the village aged 4 months) and at that time Letchmore Heath was a village with long established families, mostly employed on the large estates within the Aldenham Parish. She is probably the last lifetime resident of Letchmore Heath and has lived through a lot of change.

Her early childhood was quite strict and she was restricted in her contact with other village children. This left an impression on Edna, as in subsequent life she always particularly loved to see young children playing together.

After village schools, she went to work as a trainee assistant nanny in London, and by her late teens was back in this area working as a nanny in Radlett. In fact, it was during this period she first met a cheeky newspaper delivery boy, Len Kitchen, who was to figure so large in her later life.

The 2nd world war came and in 1940 she joined the land army working mainly at Mr Attenborough’s orchard and market garden in Letchmore Heath.

In early 1943 she attended a post cricket match dance at Aldenham social club, which was also attended by Alfred Kitchen from Radlett who had guested for Aldenham in the cricket match, while home on leave from the RAF. Mum asked the organiser, John Dixon, to arrange a dance for her with “that handsome RAF officer over in the corner”. Romance blossomed and in September 1943 Edna married Alfred Kitchen at Aldenham Church, and that cheeky paper boy Len Kitchen, being Alf’s youngest brother, played trumpet in the band at the post wedding celebration in Aldenham Social Club.

Sadly, on November 28th 1944 Alf’s mosquito plane came down at Kampen, Holland. Edna’s first son, Adrian, was born in January 1945. For months Alf remained missing until finally news came from Holland that Alf had perished crash-landing in the shallow waters of the Ijsselmeer sea.

Following the end of the war Alf’s father purchased 1 Clarendon cottage. It was renamed Kampen Kot and Edna and Adrian moved in.

In 1948 after his national service was completed, Len (that cheeky paper boy again) and another brother Clifford came to lodge at Kampen Kot, and in 1949 Len Kitchen asked Edna to marry him.

Their son, Simon, arrived in 1955. Simon recalls it being a happy house. His mother and father encouraged laughter and pranks, and Edna wanted her children to enjoy their childhood. They shared a strong faith and a love of Aldenham church, and worshipped there together until Len died in 2009. They had been married for 60 years.

Throughout her life Edna cared for nature, children, and the elderly. Sunday roasts and cakes were the order of the day. She loved being outside in her garden or out walking. It was no surprise to come home and find that she had already been out and returned with mushrooms, blackberries or hazelnuts gathered from the local fields and hedgerows. She encouraged her children to love the countryside.

Recently, a man from the Netherlands who has been researching activity during the war near Kampen made contact via Danny at the pub to see if any of Alf’s relatives were still in the area. He is planning to visit Letchmore Heath soon to discuss his research but sadly will now not be able to meet Edna.
Villagers remember Edna as a lovely, kind hearted lady who loved animals, children, the countryside as well as the village and its history. She was kindness personified and will be sadly missed