Newest Review: ... in Watford is that most places are within walking distance of each other. You can walk from the Harlequin to the large Tescos - somethi... more
The Wonderful World Of Watford
Member Name: geetarchurchy
Date: 23/07/02, updated on 23/07/02 (2223 review reads)
Advantages: Good nightlife, lots of things to visit, proximity to London
Disadvantages: Bad hospital, poor parking facilities
Having lived in Watford all my life, I think that I am well equipped to tell you all about it (so what if I’m only 16??). Let us begin with a sprinkling of history:
Watford had began primarily as a market town, with many Inns for weary travellers on their way to London (thus the enormous number of pubs nowadays).Watford then grew up in the Victorian Industrial eruption, due to it’s closeness to London, and the various mills that sprung up out of nowhere. To cater for this, a mainline train station was constructed, Watford Junction, and the The Grand Junction (not Union as it is sometimes referred to as) Canal that runs from Brentford to Braunston also drifts through. Both were used for the transportation of goods and people to this growing and lively product of the industrial boom.
Watford was most well known for it’s printing industry, (Sun Printers is currently being knocked down to make way for some monstrosity no doubt planned by the council), and it’s laundering services, of which only one is still remaining; a small compact place in Sydney Road which I can more or less see from my bedroom window!
To accommodate the new workers, terraced housing was built up and this has become what is now known as West Watford. It’s rabbit warren roads and close knit communities typical of areas such as this. There are many small communities in the area; West Indians, Pakistanis, Indians, Portuguese and Spanish to name but a few, and this adds to the cultural diversity of the town.
Watford as it is now, has developed and expanded much since those early days. The ‘Pride’ of Watford, as it is put, is The Harlequin Centre. There are a great many shops to keep girls and boys, young and old entertained. Clothes stores, sports shops, many music outlets and department stores clutter the high street and the Harlequin, there are also a good selection of banks and insurance brokers, as well as….pubs. <
Watford’s nightlife is lively, very much so in fact. There are what seems to be hundreds of pubs, Yates’s, The Rat and Parrot and The Artichoke to name just three. These are all within five minute’s walk of each other. There are two nightclubs, Area and Destiny (which used to be Kudos, which was originally called Bailey’s) and both of these offer good nights out. I would recommend that you go to Destiny though; it may be slightly more expensive, but there is more space in which you can strut your stuff, and the music is better too. There are also many restaurants and little bars, the best of which is probably L’Artista, which is famed for its exotic cooking. There are many take away places, Fish and Chips, Thai, Chinese, Greek and Italian delicatessens all inhabit Watford.
If you like culture, we have the Colosseum and Watford Palace Theatre. The Colosseum is a 1400 seater venue and has played host to many great acts, from Harry Hill to Oasis, Bottom Live to The Who, everyone who’s anyone has played here. The Watford Palace Theatre is an inexpensive way to spend an evening, watching the best of Watford’s young actors put on shows to delight and captivate their audience. Then there is Cassiobury Park. Most of Watford used to be owned by the Earl of Essex (no I don’t know why Essex either, if anyone knows I’d be most grateful to learn..) and the park is the remainder of what used to be his back garden. There are woods for ramblers and many hiking trails for the intrepid, and many a lazy afternoon can be spent lying in the sun watching the world go by from the park itself.
Watford also of course has a football team, formerly of Premiership status, the prices of tickets have risen dramatically in past seasons, and I am only fortunate enough to catch a few games a season nowadays. The club is in severe financial trouble and the recent backroom changes have meant that we are destined f
or yet another season of mid table mediocrity in football’s second flight. And how can I forget that “friendly” rivalry with Luton?
Watford is also a good place to come to if you are looking to get to London, with good traffic links to the M25, M1 and A414. Heathrow is only an hour away, Gatwick is three quarters of an hour away, and London itself is only a 40 minute train journey, if you use Watford’s SECOND train station, the Metropolitan line’s first station in this area is situated here folks.
Watford is an innovative and fun place to be; we always seem to be getting the new improvements the government plans: we were amongst the first to get the E-mail phones in the highstreet you know! Sadly we are lacking in sports facilities, with only one Swimming Pool, and the less than satisfactory Watford Leisure Centre, but I’m sure his will be eventually rectified!
There you go, Watford, my home town and there’s no place I’d rather be.
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