Changing Face of Hemel Hempstead Number 9
By June Jackson July 2006
Old High Street
Having moved to Hemel Hempstead in 1978 I remember the Old High Street had a lovely kitchen shop with attractive lattice bay windows each side of the entrance. I can’t recall the name but it had such a super selection of kitchen utensils and it was a joy to look round ~~ but unfortunately it has ”long gone” and is now the Old Town Angling Centre ~~ still with the same bay windows.
Further along the High Street was Salters the pine shop, another place of interest. It eventually moved to the corner of Anchor Lane in Boxmoor Village and has since “sunk without trace”!
St. Pauls Hospital
I remember St. Pauls Hospital in Queensway which was closed down, evacuated and demolished to make way for a modern housing estate. The day that Queensway had the parade of “walking wounded” and folk in ambulances and wheelchairs being transferred to Hemel Hospital was quite an amazing sight !!!
Another loss to the town was the closure of The Pavilion I had been to many events in this theatre ~~ the acoustics were not perfect and the toilets were two floors down from the auditorium (bad design) but we really do need a decent replacement theatre in this town !!
I also remember the round car park in Moor End Road next to the British Petroleum building, it made one feel quite giddy to use it. The Wagon and Horses on the corner was a good town centre pub, always very busy and never replaced in the new development as had originally been promised.
The Co-op department store on the opposite corner was also popular and people travelled from far and near to shop here so I am led to believe ~~ it also had a restaurant overlooking the Water Gardens.
The Market (as was) used to be very busy and was well known everywhere. Again people travelled from afar to partake of what it had to offer ~~ bargains galore !! It is such a sad sight now,
it really needs to be more in the town centre along the middle of the outer pedestrian area. I’m sure this would resurrect its prominence again !!