News
News

Bookmark this page to keep up-to-date with what's happening at Watford Museum. We'll also include information about other interesting local and historical events.

If you'd like to receive news updates by email, send a message to info@watfordmuseum.org.uk with a request to join our mailing list.

A leaflet containing information about Watford Live! Postcard Competition: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

09.07.2014: Watford Live! Postcard Competition

We received a fantastic response for the Watford Live! postcard competition, with lots of lovely scenes of Watford. The entries are now all on display in the museum and you can vote online for your favourites at www.watfordlive.org Voting ends Thursday 24 July and the exhibition runs until 29 August.

Prize giving will take place at the Little Gallery Tearoom on Saturday 26 July, 2pm.

08.07.2014: Cassiobury Park

Cassiobury Park receives restoration grant

Watford Borough Council has received a grant of £4,542,400 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and the Big Lottery Fund for Cassiobury Park. Added to the council's financial commitment, the overall £6.6million project to improve and restore Cassiobury Park includes a new sustainable park hub building with café, community and exhibition room, education facilities, toilets and changing facilities, extending and improving the Cha Cha Cha tea pavilion, revamped and improved pools, returning the historic bandstand to the park, improved entrances to the park, improved management of Whippendell Wood and the Local Nature Reserve, restoration of the historic 18th century Lime Avenue, providing an on site park manager, community park ranger and education officer.

Cassiobury Park is the most significant and most popular green space in Watford, and the landscape is of significant historical interest comprising part of the former Cassiobury Estate, significantly researched by Watford Museum over many years and soon to be captured in a new book called 'Cassiobury - The Ancient Seat of the Earls of Essex' out in October 2014.

For more information on the park, visit: watford.gov.uk/cassioburypark

A leaflet containing information about Papermouth Comic Con: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

08.07.2014: Papermouth Comic Con

Join us on Saturday 12 July 2014 for a night of celebrating comics, collectibles and live music!

There will be a merchandise raffle with proceeds to Signpost, comic books from JSP Cosplay Studio, a Sci-lly Sci-Fi Disco and a Krypton Kids section where you can draw your own superheroes!

For more information visit: www.papermouth.co.uk (also on Facebook and Twitter)

The event runs from 5 to 10pm. Entry is £1.

A leaflet containing information about a Friends of Watford Museum talk: click to enlarge (PDF file, 62Kb)

30.06.2014: Astronomy

The next Friends of Watford Museum talk will be on Thursday 10th July at 2pm, when Richard Westwood's subject will be astronomy.

Entry to these talks is free for Friends of Watford Museum, or £3 for members of the public. Booking is essential.

A leaflet containing information about Discover Archaeology!: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

27.06.2014: Discover Archaeology

On Saturday 12 July 2014 from 1-3pm, come to Watford Museum to celebrate the national Festival of Archaeology!

Watch flint knapping demonstrations by Richard Wilson, handle flotsam from the Thames, dig from treasure in our sand pit, play on our activity tables and meet the South West Herts Archaeological and Historical Society!

All ages, free entry, no booking necessary.

13.06.2014: Little Gallery Tearoom

Join us on Saturday 28 June 2014 for a needlefelt and stitched postcard workshop by Sew Inspired. The workshop is for people of all abilities, it's about having fun, while Sew Inspired share their skills. £3.50 per person, booking is essential.

Little Gallery Tearoom - Sew Inspired

Sew Inspired will also be exhibiting and selling their beautiful handmade crafts. Not to mention the Watford Area Arts Forum prize giving for the literature and art challenge cup competitions at 2pm! There is also a chance to buy handmade cakes and fairtrade coffee from our tearoom.

12.06.2014: Watford Football Club's WWI commemorations

In tribute to the 12 Watford FC first-team players who served in World War One, the Hornets' away strip for the 2014/15 season harks back to the colours first worn back in 1914.

One hundred years on from the start of 'The Great War', the club will donate £1 from the sale of each replica black and white striped away shirt to the Royal British Legion.

Watford Football Club's WWI commemorations

Watford's players will also wear the away kit on the home fixture scheduled nearest to Remembrance Sunday in early November, with the traditional Royal British Legion bucket collection being held, as well as other special commemorative activities.

The amateur and professional first-team Watford players who served in the First World War were: George Badenoch, Harold Bulling, Jimmy Chalmers, Albert Green, Owen Gregory, Ernie Grimsdell, Bill Hastings, Bill Markland, Robert McGuire, Joe McLauchlan, Alex Stewart and Skilly Williams.

A leaflet containing information about The Key: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

01.06.2014: The Key

Watford Live Festival is delighted to host the Watford screening of The Key - an animated film produced by Mew Lab. Workshops for the film took place at Watford Museum

The event on 29 June at the Pump House is chaired by the Director of the London-International Animation-Festival, Nag Vladermersky. There'll also be a question and answer session.

A free event, but seats must be reserved on info@watfordlive.org

30.05.2014: New acquisitions

Our most recent additions to the museum's collections are two printing blocks used to print Watford FC letters in the early 1980s. The purchase of the blocks was funded by Watford Football Club as part of an on-going partnership with the museum.

29.05.2014: Cassiobury

Cassiobury - The Ancient Seat of the Earls of Essex

A book telling the incredible story of Cassiobury House and Park is coming soon. Written by Paul Rabbitts, Watford Borough Council's Head of Parks, and Sarah Priestley, Watford Museum Curator, the book is due out in November and will feature rarely seen images from the museum's collections. Costing £20, the book will be available to buy from Watford Museum.

28.05.2014: Teenage Cancer Trust Takeover Day

Teenage Cancer Trust Takeover Day

National Citizen Service volunteers from the Watford Football Club's Community Sport and Education Trust organised a takeover day at Watford Museum raising £760 for the Teenage Cancer Trust. The young people organised all the events themselves and their work was acknowledged with a pitch presentation with museum staff at Watford v Ipswich.

27.05.2014: The China Tearoom

The China Tearoom

The museum was transformed for a special Chinese themed Little Gallery Tearoom. The event was organised as a fundraiser for the Peace Hospice, to support those walking the Great Wall of China for the Great Walk for Peace 2014. Activities included paper folding workshops and dragon dancing and over £400 was raised for the Peace Hospice!

A leaflet containing information about High Street Trails 2014: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

26.05.2014: High Street Trails 2014

Step back in time with Watford Museum and explore the architectural and social history of Watford's High Street on these walking tours.

High Street Trail

Saturday 14 June and Saturday 2 August, 12 - 1.30pm

Ghosts and Legends

Saturday 5 July and Saturday 16 August, 3 - 4.30pm

Victorian Trail

Saturday 20 September, 12 - 1.30pm

23.05.2014: Little Gallery Tearoom

This Saturday, have a go at the art of jewellery making with returning jewellery designer Christine Orchard's adult workshop. Learn the basic techniques of working with tools to create stunning bracelet and matching. Classes are suitable for beginners and those with a bit of beading experience. Workshop sessions: 11am - 12.30pm or 1.30 - 3pm. Workshop is £8 per person, booking is essential.

Little Gallery Tearoom - Sarah Lamb

Sarah Lamb will also be exhibiting her stunning glass jewellery, as well as homemade cakes and coffee for sale!

A leaflet containing information about Past. Present. Future.: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

22.05.2014: Past. Present. Future.

An exhibition of works responding to the museum collections by Art and Design students from West Herts College is on display at the museum from 10 May to 7 June 2014.

21.05.2014: Earl of Clarendon Sculpture

Earl of Clarendon Sculpture

Luke was successful in the purchase of a sculpture of Edward Hyde Villiers, 5th Earl of Clarendon at Bonhams auction on 8th April for a hammer price of £800. The bronze is by Mary Bromet, a local sculptor most well known for the Peace Memorial.

The sculpture is an important addition for the Museum collection and was purchased with assistance by the Friends of Watford Museum and the Hertfordshire Heritage fund. It is currently on display in the Museum Foyer.

20.05.2014: Arts Development Officer

A new Arts Development Officer has started work, based at Watford Museum. Laura Horn comes to us from Dance Digital and her priorities include Arts Development, representing Watford Borough Council on the Creative Hertfordshire Forum, artist/ project support and working on the exciting forthcoming Town Centre Big Events! Alongside this, she will also be providing a fortnightly Arts News Bulletin. Her email address is laura.horn@watford.gov.uk

19.05.2014: Luke Perry - River Colne Sculptures

From Thursday 22 to Saturday 31 May, this exhibition in the Watford Museum Foyer explores the creative process behind the new artworks that will be unveiled in Watford along the Colne River Corridor. From work in the community and the historical findings that inspired the artworks to the sparks of the metalwork that made them, the exhibit shows a visual history of the sculptures themselves and how they have been made. See the character behind the newest addition to Watford's rich cultural heritage.

A leaflet containing information about Info day - Young Curators at Watford Museum: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

07.05.2014: Young Curators at Watford Museum

On Saturday 21 June 2014 from 1-3pm, join us at Watford Museum to find out more about how you can become part of our new group - the Young Curators. You could have the chance to organise, design and research your very own exhibition on a theme from our collections in Watford Museum's Space2.

Free admission, no booking necessary!

A leaflet containing information about Silencio 2014: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

06.05.2014: Silencio

On Saturday 7 June 2014 at 6pm, ten acoustic artists will be performing unplugged at Watford Museum to coincide with Watford Live!

Not to mention a chance to buy a drink from our Benskins Bar! Entry is free!

01.05.2014: Peace Watford Live! Competition

In recognition of the centenary of the First World War, 'Peace' is the joint theme for this year's Watford Area Arts Forum competition.

The two competitions, Art and Literature, are organised for the Watford Live! festival in June by Watford Writers and Watford Area Arts Forum with an exhibition and presentation at Watford Museum.

Entries are free with three cash prices for each competitions.

For full details and entry forms, please go to www.watfordwriters.co.uk and www.watfordareaartsforum.com.

A leaflet containing information about Museums at Night 2014: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

29.04.2014: Museums at Night

Join us on Saturday 17 May 2014 at 6pm for our late night opening and find out more about the night sky! Performing duo Let's Talk About Space will be guiding families through the solar system using poetry, spoken word, film and animation.

Children's creative dance workshops will take place from 6 - 7pm and explore the unique features of the Planets and Constellations in the Solar System through movement and expression. Suitable for age 7+, booking is essential.

Not to mention a fantastic chance to explore the museum at night, with Central Primary school's space room on display, live music and a chance to buy a drink from our Benskins bar.

A leaflet containing information about The China Tearoom Peace Hospice Fundraiser: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

24.04.2014: Dance workshops

Join us on Saturday 26 April 2014 at 12.30pm for our children's dance workshops led by our new Arts Officer Laura Horn. These will run alongside our Little Gallery Tearoom Peace Hospice fundraiser.

The workshops are free and are suitable for ages 5+, but booking is essential.

06.04.2014: Teenage Cancer Trust Fundraiser

Save the date: Thursday 17 April!

Young volunteers from the National Citzen Service have only three days to organise and hold a family friendly fundraiser for Teenage Cancer Trust at the museum. Keep an eye out for more details!

A leaflet containing information about The China Tearoom Peace Hospice Fundraiser: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

03.04.2014: The China Tearoom Peace Hospice Fundraiser

Join us on Saturday 26 April, from 10.30am to 4pm, for our China styled tearoom to raise money for the Peace Hospice and those involved in the Great Walk for Peace. Delicious handmade cakes and fairtrade coffee will be for sale, as well as a red envelope lucky dip!

Origami workshops by Happygami for families will take place between 11am - 12pm, with an adult origami workshop from 1-2pm. The workshops cost £2 per person and under 8's go free! Booking is essential!

All proceeds from the cakes, lucky dip and workshops will go towards the Peace Hospice.

A leaflet containing information about Easter workshops: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

27.03.2014: Easter workshops

Join us for our family Easter workshops at Watford Museum on Saturday 19th April. Have a go at making Easter wreaths decorated with painted eggs, ribbons, pom poms and fluffy chicks! You can also become a museum explorer on our Easter trail, with a chocolate surprise at the end!

Workshop times: 11am - 12pm, 12-1pm and 2-3pm

All workshops are free, but booking is essential!

A leaflet containing information about the Walking in Cassiobury exhibition: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

21.03.2014: Walking in Cassiobury

An exhibition of photographs by Raffi Katz capturing the atmosphere of the wilder parts of Cassiobury Park and the lesser known outskirts of Watford will be on display at the museum from Saturday 3rd April to Saturday 26th April.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a Friends of Watford Museum talk on Friday 11th April at 2pm. Admission is free for Friends and £3 for members of the public. Booking essential!

20.03.2014: Little Gallery Tearoom

Little Gallery Tearoom

Join us on Saturday 22nd March from 10.30am to 4pm. Mandy Latham will be exhibiting her beautiful handmade shawls, baby gift baskets and knit wear. There will also be scrumptious homemade cakes and fairtrade coffee for sale throughout the day!

20.03.2014: Paper Craft Mobiles for Teeny Tots!

Little Gallery Tearoom workshop

Join us on Saturday 22nd March from 1 to 2.30pm for our Little Gallery Tearoom adult workshop! Victoria Culf will be giving a crash course on the art of paper craft mobiles, involving the techniques of paper mache and decoupage. Go home with your own handmade, brightly coloured mobile and add a carnival twist to any room!

The cost is £8. To book your place please contact 01923 232297 or email gemma.meek@watford.gov.uk

A leaflet containing information about the Looking? Good! exhibition: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

19.03.2014: Looking? Good!

An exhibition of paintings, drawings and sculptures by members of Guideposts Trust/Henry Smith House Day Centre in Watford is taking place at the museum until 29th March.

The exhibition represents the works of novices and experienced artists, working alongside each other in the day centre's weekly art groups.

14.03.2014: Pop Up Record Shop

On Sunday 23rd March, the British Record Shop Archive will be popping up at the LP Cafe, 173 The Parade from 12 to 4pm to collect archivable items related to record shops in Watford. Dig out your record shop related stuff, celebrate record shop heritage and share your memories with the British Record Shop Archive curator.

It is also a great chance to have your favourite coffee, tea and cakes in your local independent record cafe, accompanied by a soundtrack of crackling pop, rock and jazz vinyl! After all, we don't think there is a better way to hear great music than on a vinyl record!

For more information, see www.thelpcafe.com and www.britishrecordshoparchive.org.

A leaflet containing information about Papermouth - Music/Art Event: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

11.03.2014: Papermouth - Music/Art Event

On Saturday 15th March from 5pm to 10pm, Papermouth will showcase a series of diverse musical and artistic performers quarterly in Watford Museum. Join us for the chance to experience live music, art movies and artistic performers all under one roof!

Featured artist: Carolyn Storey
Music: Tom Craven, Clinton Tavares and Montmartre
Performance Room: The Turner Brothers

Papermouth is a personal, home-grown company, which creates interesting and stimulating music and art events to expose the local music scene.

A leaflet containing information about Art Postcard Competition: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

07.03.2014: 'From Watford, With Love'

Watford Live! in partnership with Watford Museum are holding an art postcard competition for anyone of any age to enter! Create a picturesque, interesting or inspiring image of your favourite place in Watford using any media or art techniques. The picture has to be postcard size (150mm x 105mm) and submitted to the museum by 4pm, Saturday 24th May. All entries will be shown on the Watford Live! website, with the winners put on display at the museum during the festival.

Please note museum opening times: Thurs - Sat, 10am - 5pm to submit entries.

05.03.2014: Views of a Changing Landscape

From Saturday 8th March, the museum's Space2 gallery will host a new exhibition of photographs by Mir Gwilliam Parkes exploring the shifting landscape of King's Cross during its ongoing regeneration.

There'll also be an artist's talk on Saturday 12 April when Mir Gwilliam Parkes will speak about the origins of her exhibition.

For more information, please see our Space2 website.

26.02.2014: Nationally Listed Buildings

The Council has produced a document on all the Nationally Listed Buildings in Watford. This document includes the original building descriptions, from when properties were listed, as well as additional information on the constraints relating to listed building status. Paper copies of the full documents can be viewed at the Town Hall and at both the Central and North Watford Libraries. The documents can also be downloaded for free as a PDF.

A four week consultation runs until Friday 21st March. Comments and suggestions are invited on the draft document, and these will be used to inform the final version.

Further information on this process can be obtained by phoning the Planning Policy team on 01923 278263 or by e-mailing Justin.webber@watford.gov.uk

13.02.2014: Little Gallery Tearoom adult workshop

There will be a fantastic chance to learn the art of jewellery making from professional artist Christine Orchard on Saturday 22 February. This beginners workshop will have you learning the art of threading and knotting. You will be able create a beaded set of earrings, bracelet and necklace in a variety of different colours.

Little Gallery Tearoom adult workshop

This workshop will also sit alongside our Little Gallery Tearoom, so after your creative session you can buy delicious homemade cakes and coffee, as well as browsing the craft of local artists.

The workshop will take place from 1-3pm at Watford Museum and will cost £5 per person. Contact the museum to book your place.

A leaflet containing information about Art Postcard Competition Workshops: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

12.02.2014: Art Postcard Competition Workshops

Join us and have a go at creating your own picture postcard of your favourite scene of Watford out of a variety of different materials. Your design will be entered into a Watford Live! competition, where the chosen winners will be displayed in the museum.

Both workshops are free, but booking is essential

A leaflet containing information about Clock This: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

04.02.2014: Clock This

A Wellstones exhibition will be on display at Watford Museum from Thursday 6th February until 28th February.

The exhibition includes work produced by various artists. They share with us their artistic and creative talent through the pieces, by using different clays and glazes. Works created at Wellstones Art and Pottery Workshop.

03.02.2014: Printing in Watford

Printing in Watford exhibition

An exhibition celebrating 100 years of printing education in Watford has gone on display at West Herts College. The exhibition presents some of the printed work produced by staff and students at the Watford School of Printing and the Department of Printing, from the opening decades of the 20th century to the cessation of printing education at the end of the century.

This exhibition continues until 7 February 2014, and also marks the launch of a research project Watford's Printing Past. This project is a collaboration between Watford Museum, Birmingham City University and the Watford University of the Third Age. For more information on the project, please contact Watford Museum.

A leaflet containing information about The Art of Photography: click to enlarge (PDF file, 307Kb)

23.01.2014: The Art of Photography

Join the Friends of Watford Museum for a talk by Bill Cooper on the art of photography. The event takes place at Watford Museum on Saturday 15 February at 2pm. Admission is free for Friends of Watford Museum or £3 for visitors.

23.01.2014: Watford Music Legends

Our friends at the LP Cafe are researching the music history of Watford. You can read more here: http://www.thebestof.co.uk/local/watford/community-hub/blog/view/watfords-music-legends-wire-1387297950.4121 http://www.thebestof.co.uk/local/watford/community-hub/blog/view/watfords-music-legends-elton-john-1385546814.5111 Look out for more blogs, check out their website at http://thelpcafe.com/ or pop in for speciality coffee, light lunches, cracking cakes and great music!

23.01.2014: Rekindle memories of Watford

Watford Museum has been helping rekindle memories of watford from the 1950s - 2000. We have been providing the fantastic 'thebestof Watford' team, Peter Sutton and Abby Dennis, with photographs of Watford to post on their facebook page. On Memory Lane Mondays you can see all manner of scenes, from postcard views of the pond to 1980s high street images from our collection. Anyone can register and join in by sharing their own memories on the comment boxes: https://www.facebook.com/thebestofwatford

A leaflet containing information about The Little Gallery Tea Room: click to enlarge (PDF file, 663Kb)

23.01.2014: Little Gallery Tearoom

Join us for the first Little Gallery Tea Room of the year! On 25 January 2014 we have lots of freshly baked cakes and crafts for sale. On 22 February 2014 we celebrate Fairtrade day, so you can warm up with a mug of fairtrade coffee and learn more about fair trading. We look forward to seeing you in the new year!

News archives

July 2012 to December 2013

May 2011 to July 2012

September 2009 to May 2011

August 2008 to September 2009

June 2007 to August 2008

June 2006 to June 2007

August 2005 to June 2006

March 2005 to August 2005

September 2004 to March 2005

March 2004 to September 2004