Residents turn out for Welwyn Garden City’s 90th birthday

CIRCUS performers, funfair rides, live music and food stalls took over WGC on Saturday, as residents celebrated the town’s 90th birthday.

WET weather and overcast skies did little to cloud the moods of visitors to the town centre, as families flocked to enjoy a host of attractions, including a roller rink, cage football, face painting and several fundraising activities.

A raffle was held, while staff at the O2 store in the Howard Centre donned fancy dress and held a “hook the duck” competition in support of the Isabel Hospice.

The day also saw the launch of the Welwyn Garden Heritage Trust’s Where Do You Think You Live? project, which encourages residents to research and record the history of WGC.

Other organisations present on the day were Cats Protection, Dogs for the Blind, Campus West, Domino’s Pizza, YMCA, the WGC Society, Friends of Welwyn Hatfield Museums, Scrap Store, Gosling Sports Park, Finesse Leisure, Barn Theatre, Letchworth and District Astronomical Society and St John Ambulance.

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After the party, 180 residents who had lived in WGC for 50 years or more were invited to a special tea party at the John Lewis department store in Bridge Road.

Dr Dennis Lewis, who led calls for a 90th birthday celebration earlier in the year, said: “The weather relented and there were crowds in the streets all day around the various stalls, stands and bone-breakers.

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“The tea party for residents who have lived in the town for 50 years or more was very good indeed. John Lewis did us proud.”

Nicola Kane, town centre manager at Welwyn Hatfield Council, said: “Unfortunately we were unable to control the drizzle during the early afternoon, but it didn’t do anything to dampen the spirits of those participating.

“The sun came out later on and it was glorious!

“Many people also stopped to ask about the history of the town and learn more about where they lived.

“The tea party in the evening was an overwhelming success, with some guests having not seen friends since their school days more than 50 years before.”

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