Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Now lets have a little Dacorum...

On the way down to London we cruised past lots of places that we recognised the names of but didn't have time to stop and explore, people we meet had said that there are some really nice towns on the southern GU.

Soon after Watford comes Hemel Hempstead. We were desperate to get some printer ink as we had some important legal docs that needed printing and posting pronto! A little south of the canal was a small industrial estate with a Staples shop so that would do (I would have liked to get a smaller more compact printer but they are expensive and our old one is great for scanning and photocopying as well). North of the canal and only a short peddle away is the town of Hemel Hepmstead. A new town described in our Collins guide as having excellent shops, built around a charming old town with attractive streets' - lying buggers!

It may well have an older high street but it's nearly a mile away from the 'new' town. Oh and this newer town is probably 1960/70's vintage, how long can you go on calling them new towns! It reminds me of Basingstoke in the early 90's (I have experience), Basingstoke was a new town that was blooming 'orrible. The town centre was so bad that about fifteen years ago they knocked it down and started again. Even on a beautiful summers day I am struggling to find the positive to say about HH.

Years ago they said that the downturn of a town started with too many estate agents, then came too many charity shops, then bookies and now pound shops. Every other shop on HH is a pound shop. Some have even closed down, what comes next? 

There was one great place though, Mosaic Supermarket at the top of town. Asian market with a Turkish bakery tucked at the back. Loads of fresh fruit and veg at bargain prices, interesting selection of both fresh and frozen items (we bought some really tasty frozen Samoa's). 

The Asian lady behind the counter was impressed that I had headed straight for her pile of Turkish Lahmacun, (like a thin pizza with a sprinkling of minced meat over veg rather than tomato sauce, and no cheese - bargain at £1.50 each and always made fresh on the day) but became even more chatty when I said I was going to reheat them over charcoal and fill them with piles of salad, lots of lemon juice and my homemade smoked chilly jam! So far the only place in HH that I would gladly revisit.

And now some excerpts form one of my favorite sites (see previous blog - the back end of nuneaton) 'uncyclopedia'.

Hemel Hempstead is a new town in the south of England, created (in part) to house the homeless people of London after they had lost their homes to bombing raids. The town was also designed to be self sufficient and as an unforeseen effect, no one ever leaves once they arrive. With no one leaving Hemel Hempstead it was ultimately forgotten about by the rest of the world! With the people of Hemel Hempstead (the Hemelites) quickly running out of the essential supplies of foodwaterporncigars and hospitals. The Hemelites formed into roaming bands of murderous cultists and the shortage of supplies wasn't helping this fact. The town was becoming desperate and ever angrier with each day that pasted without any media attention since the oil storage depot disaster of 2005. You can continue your studies into the Hemelites battle of London here (link)

Next onto Berkhamsted, let's see if there's is a little more decorum in that part of Dacorum!

No pics, the camera plain refused to open its shutter in Hemel Hempstead. 

1 comment:

  1. Definitely more dacorum in Berkhamsted. Am delighted you found Mosaic. Have raved about it to everyone for years! Met you briefly as you locked through passed Rising Sun! Since then have cruised through the Blisworth tunnel -very proud of myself!! Bon voyage. E.