Summer Update from Dorothy - getting the best for Watford
I was sad to see the Big Festival finish at the weekend. It was great to see such a mix of people in the "top of the town" to enjoy the shows over the last few weeks. We've had hundreds of people attend every day, and it brought real energy to the High Street. I thought that Puja's bungee acrobats were spectacular!
Our Big Events bring a lot of people in and help keep our town centre thriving, but that's only part of the story. I hope you like the improvements we've already made to the pond and the High Street. Now we're looking forward to the Charter Place redevelopment - it'll make such a difference. Intu are investing £100m to bring up-to-date facilities. I'm particularly pleased that at long last there'll be a dedicated cinema back in the town centre, including an IMAX screen. It'll be a great addition to the
varied film programme already shown by the Palace Theatre.
One thing that definitely still lets our town down is our car parks. That's why I was so pleased earlier this month when we could finally announce that Sutton, Gade and Church "satellite car parks" are going to receive a £2m refurbishment. It's well overdue, but we were locked into a contract with another provider. The investment is coming from CitiPark, so it's a good financial deal for Watford.
I've seen the designs, and they look great. They will also be more secure.
The three car parks should be fully refurbished by spring 2016, but I've been assured that new payment machines will be in place in the next couple of months.
In the meantime, please do remember that it's The Big Beach from Saturday 25th July to Sunday 2nd August, 9am to 9pm, on the Parade. The weather forecast I saw said that we're going to have a second heatwave for that week - so if you can't get to the beach, the beach will come to you! There's lots planned, from kids activities to yoga sessions and live music, so there should be something for everyone!