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Glorious Garden Parties!

On Friday 7th and Saturday 8th July my wife Kate and I were pleased to host the annual High Sheriff’s garden parties at our home in Sarratt. We took the opportunity to thank all volunteers from our local village and had a wonderful afternoon with them in the sunshine, followed by an evening celebrating the launch of the new ‘Love Herts’ appeal by Hertfordshire Community Foundation. These events were followed on Saturday by another warm afternoon celebrating with guests from around the county and High Sheriff's from neighbouring counties. At all three parties we took the opportunity to host a ‘Bake Off’ competition. Charities and organisations from across Hertfordshire were invited to participate to tell their own stories to the assembled guests, with a brief to produce a small batch of cakes and sweet treats of their choice. These were then ably judged by the Chairman of Fortnum and Mason and the Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire, the Countess of Verulam, before garden party guests were able to consume them much to their delight! We were also hugely honoured to have Mary Berry act as an honorary judge on Saturday afternoon, which was a great thrill for us all! Mary thoroughly enjoyed the experience and was very impressed by the standard of baking. Each ‘Bake Off' was a very hard fought competition and the efforts made by all parties was exceptional. Not only did the baked goods taste fantastic but everything was so beautifully presented. The three winning organisations were the Sarratt Horticultural Society, Crossroads Care and the British Schools Museum. Worthy runners up were: Friends of Holy Cross Church, Sarratt; Sarratt Festival of Music; Sarratt WI; Sarratt Care; Sarratt Post Office Stores; Rennie Grove Hospice; Ascend; The Collett School; Hospice of St Francis; Herts Inclusive Theatre; Garden House Hospice Care and Hertfordshire Community Foundation. All participating groups received a donation to their cause. I would also like to take the opportunity to thank Hertford and Ware Police Cadets, 1st Sarratt Scouts Group and Watford UTC who provided very able support over the weekend. We were also fantastically entertained by the Jolly Jazzers and Watford Brass Band. We were truly blessed with the weather and I would like to thank one and all for making the weekend so special and unique!

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