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Jazzercise for Epilepsy

On 18 November more than 150 committed Jazzercisers took part in a six-session marathon to raise money for the Epilepsy Society. Ten instructors led them through 55 routines through the day, including Funky Fusion, Ballet Body & Party Mixx. The charity was chosen in memory of a young man from Tring, Jeremy Snape, who sadly lost his life to epilepsy at the age of just 20. To date, more than £7,800 has been raised for the Epilepsy Society; £950 came from the raffle, which was only possible with the support of local businesses. For more information and pictures go to
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The door has re-opened on the possibility of a new hospital for West Herts. The Herts Valley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has agreed to take more time before approving the West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust’s Strategic Outline Case, which would have removed the new-build hospital from the list of options. Herts Valley CCG board met on 9 March to consider the proposals approved and submitted by the Watford-based Hospital Trust. Those proposals concentrate on rebuilding and refurbishing the Watford Hospital for acute and A&E services and upgrading St Albans Hospital for planned and elective surgery. The Dacorum Hospital Group ‘New Hospital Campaign’, supported by Hemel Hempstead MP, Mike Penning, submitted a detailed report which challenges many of the assumptions made in the proposals and reiterates their view that the unbiased facts support a new-build greenfield option as the most viable and advantageous one. Mike Penning MP commented: ‘NHS England have already been made aware of the lunacy of ignoring a new-build hospital on a greenfield site and of the flaws in the arguments put forward against it. I have made my opposition to basing our long-term acute hospital facilities in Watford widely known. I reiterate my view that ... a new purpose-built state-of-the-art, modern hospital in a central location on an available low-cost site by the M25 is the best option.’
A Marsworth bellringer has won a national award from the Association of Ringing Teachers. Neil Waterman, from All Saints’ Church, started learning to ring in August 2014 and has progressed rapidly through the ‘Learning the Ropes’ scheme, a programme similar to music grades or karate belts. Neil was awarded a silver medal and a certificate by judges who were impressed by his rapid progress and commitment to local ringing activities. He is invited to attend a masterclass in Birmingham in September, joining other high-achieving ringers from all over the UK. Church bell ringing is a traditional English pastime and can become extremely absorbing. There are always challenges to rise to, with increasingly intricate and complex ‘methods’ to learn. Even learning to handle a church bell competently can take 10-20hrs of one-to-one instruction. Then learners start to ring with other people and enjoy the social aspect of what is essentially a team activity. The oldest of the six Church bells at Marsworth dates from 1662 but the tower is equipped with the latest modern technology - a ringing ‘simulator’ which enables ringers to practise with the bells silenced outside. Marsworth is an accredited teaching tower which means that there are qualified ringing teachers available to show people the ropes and they regularly train new ringers from within the village and the surrounding area. The ringing teachers at Marsworth are always delighted to hear from anyone between the ages of nine and 90 interested in learning – please contact Richard Booth on 07850 038197 or email to arrange an introductory session and tour of the tower.