Hatfield square reopens with Pearl statue and playground
PUBLISHED: 15:55 05 September 2019 | UPDATED: 16:59 05 September 2019
A Hatfield square has reopened with a playground and the return of a historic statue yesterday (Sept 4).
The revamped White Lion Square now boasts table tennis, children's play equipment, seating areas and bike stands.
It also marks the return of the historic Pearl statue, carved by sculptor James Butler when White Lion Square first opened in 1970, after 30 years.
The return - made possible by Hatfield's Mark Lampert - means the statue sits at the top of the square in a grass bed in front of Peacocks, as part of a range of new features being delivered through the Herts Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP)-funded transformation works.
School pupils from St Philip Howard also buried two 10-year time capsules to mark the official opening by Welwyn Hatfield mayor Roger Trigg with the High Sheriff of Hertfordshire, Lord Salisbury, fellow Welwyn Hatfield borough councillors, borough council officers and Hertfordshire LEP representatives also in attendance.
Adrian Hawkins, deputy chair of Hertfordshire LEP, said: "We are delighted to see White Lion Square transformed with a vibrant new look and upgraded public amenities to help boost footfall into the town centre.
"This is an exciting first step in the wider regeneration of Hatfield, supported by a total £6 million Local Growth Fund investment from Hertfordshire LEP, which is set to benefit residents and local businesses for years to come."
The revamp marks the first stage of the council's wider town centre regeneration, following a major refurbishment programme of shops, flats and offices around the square.
Welwyn Hatfield borough councillor Duncan Bell, executive member for resources, said: "I am delighted that this phase of Hatfield town centre's regeneration is complete.
"White Lion Square is now an inviting community space that will drive footfall to local shops and businesses, and encourage people to spend longer in the town. The refurbishment is part of our wider town centre plans to deliver new homes, shops and attractive spaces to secure Hatfield's future prosperity to 2030 and beyond."
More information about Hatfield 2030+ town centre regeneration plans can be found at hatfield2030.co.uk.