About This Station
The station is powered by a Oregon Scientific WMR100N weather station. The data is collected every 14 to 60 seconds, dependant on sensor and the site is updated every 10 seconds. This site and its data is collected using Weather Display Software. The station is comprised of an anemometer, a rain gauge, UV sensor, pond water temperature and a thermo-hydro sensor situated in optimal positions for highest accuracy possible. The station is situated on the South Eastern edge of Stevenage, Hertfordshire, UK in a small housing estate.
Stevenage is a town and borough in Hertfordshire, England. It is situated to the east of junctions 7 and 8 of the A1(M), and is between Letchworth Garden City to the north, and Welwyn Garden City to the south.
Its population was 1,430 in 1801, 4,049 in 1901, 79,724 in 2001 and 84,651 in 2007. The largest increase occurred in the 1950s and 1960s, after Stevenage was designated a new town under the New Towns Act of 1946.
It was designated the first New Town on 1 August 1946. The plan was not popular with local people who protested at a meeting held in the town hall before Lewis Silkin, minister in the Labour Government of Clement Attlee. As Lewis Silkin arrived at the railway station for this meeting, some local people had changed the signs 'Stevenage' to 'Silkingrad'. Silkin was obstinate at the meeting, telling a crowd of 3,000 people outside the town hall (around half the town's residents): 'It's no good your jeering, it's going to be done.' Despite the hostile reaction to Silkin, and a referendum that showed 52% (turnout 2,500) 'entirely against' the expansion, the plan went ahead. Ironically, although the New Towns Commission declared the Old Town would not be touched, the first significant building to be demolished in it was indeed the Old Town Hall, in which the opposition had been expressed.
In keeping with the sociological outlook of the day, the town was planned with six self-contained neighbourhoods. The first two of these to be occupied were the Stoney Hall and Monks Wood "Estates" in 1951. Next to be built and occupied by the London 'overspill' was Bedwell in 1952 � The Twin Foxes pub was Stevenage's first "new" public house and is still situated in the Bedwell estate. The public house was named after local notorious identical twin poachers (Albert Ebenezer and Ebenezer Albert Fox). Next came Broadwater and Shephall (1953), then Chells in the 1960s and later Pin Green and Symonds Green. Another area to the north of the town is modern development of Great Ashby � this is still under construction as of 2010.
At least three other public houses are worth mentioning, for they have a direct relationship to local history: the name of the pub "Edward the Confessor" (closed 2006) could have a connection to the time in which the St Mary Church in nearby Walkern was built, for King Edward ruled from 1042 until his death in 1066. Walkern's village church dates from this time. The second pub with a strong bond to local history seems to be the "Our Mutual Friend" in Broadwater, for the name of the pub is the title of a novel by Charles Dickens. Dickens was at some occasion guest to Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton in nearby Knebworth House, and for that reason he knew Stevenage very well. The Pied Piper in Broadwater is the only public house in the world to be opened by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
The pedestrianised town centre was the first purpose built traffic-free shopping zone in Britain, and was officially opened in 1959 by the Queen. By the clock tower and ornamental pool is Joyride, a mother and child sculpture by Franta Belsky. Although revolutionary for its time, the town centre is showing signs of age and in 2005 plans were revealed for a major regeneration due to take place over the next decade. Details are still being debated by the council, landowners and other interested parties.
Next to the Town Gardens, the Church of St George and St Andrew is an example of modern church design, and has housed Stevenage Museum in its crypt since 1976. The church is a 'cathedral-like' Grade 2 listed building. It is also the largest parish church to have been built in England since World War Two.
Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother laid the Foundation Stone in July 1956 and was also present at the consecration by the Bishop of St Albans, the Right Reverend Michael Gresford-Jones, on Advent Sunday 27 November 1960. The frame is constructed from a 'continuous pour' of concrete into moulds creating interlacing arches and leaving no apparent joints. There are twelve Purbeck marble columns about the High Altar and the external walls are clad in panels faced with Normandy pebble. The campanile houses the loudspeakers for an electro-acoustic carillon.
In the old town centre of Stevenage, next to St Nicholas Church, in the parochial house there, called Rooksnest ("under the big wych-elm") the novelist Edward Morgan Forster lived from 1884 to 1894. Stevenage later acquired a monument through him, when he had Rooksnest in mind as a role model for the setting of his novel Howards End. In the preface of one paperback edition of Howards End, there is a lot to be found about landmarks of Stevenage and their relationship to the story of the novel, such as the Stevenage High Street and the Six Hills. The land north of St Nicholas Church, known as Forster Country, is the last remaining farmland within the boundary of Stevenage borough. Forster was unhappy with the development of new Stevenage, which would, in his words, 'fall out of the blue sky like a meteorite upon the ancient and delicate scenery of Hertfordshire'.
Also close to Stevenage is Knebworth House, a gothic stately home and venue of globally well-known rock concerts since 1974. The house was once home to Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton, Victorian English novelist and spiritualist, who, as reported by one of his visitors, was so deep in the belief of spiritual realities that he sometimes thought himself to be invisible while others were around.
In 1999 a millennium countdown clock was mounted on the town centre clock tower, displaying the time remaining until the year 2000. The artwork on the clock was designed by Nicola Reed, a pupil of Fearnhill School, Letchworth.
Adjacent to, yet separate from the residential parts of the town, is the Industrial Area. For many years, English Electric, later to become British Aerospace and know known as MBDA was the largest employer in the town, but now GlaxoSmithKline has a large pharmaceutical research laboratory complex (which is known as 'The Palace' to many of its inhabitants). A smaller but interesting enterprise is Eads Astrium which has for some decades (as part of British Aerospace and its predecessors) manufactured spacecraft, both as prime contractor and equipment supplier. There are many small to medium size firms as well.The town is still growing. It is set to expand west of the A1(M) motorway and may be further identified for development depending on the outcome of the Examination In Public of the Regional Spatial Strategy. The main area of recent development is Great Ashby to the northeast of the town (but actually in North Herts District). Stevenage holds a number of annual events, including the Stevenage Day, Rock in the Park and Stevenage Carnival
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