Review of the year 2013: June

The portrait of Alastair Campbell painted by Paul

The portrait of Alastair Campbell painted by Paul - Credit: Archant

Making the news in June were odd looking characters in Stotfold, a planned licence suspension at the Lister Surgicentre and a strong message about road maintenance.

Stevenage MP Stephen McPartland in front of the Lister Surgicentre

Stevenage MP Stephen McPartland in front of the Lister Surgicentre - Credit: Archant

? A process to suspend the licence of the privately-run Lister Surgicentre in Stevenage began after an inspection found patients’ health and welfare was at risk.

People frustrated with the state of repair have sprayed the words Road Tax? on Bedford road before t

People frustrated with the state of repair have sprayed the words Road Tax? on Bedford road before the junction with Willbury Hills Road - Credit: Archant

Health watchdog the Care Quality Commission began taking action against owners Clinicenta Ltd, part of Carillion, which run the Lister Surgicentre. It was later taken over by the East and North Herts NHS Trust.

? There were a few odd looking characters around when Stotfold held its annual scarecrow festival.

There was a vote for the favourite among 46 scarecrows displayed around the town, with the ‘Mad Hatter’s Tea Party’ design declared the winner.

? A self-taught artist from Hitchin who didn’t start painting until he was in his 40s saw his work exhibited in the National Portrait Gallery.

Paul Anthony Barkers’s oil painting of former government spin doctor Alistair Campbell was featured at the gallery after making it through to the BP Portrait Awards.

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? Residents were out in force to celebrate the official registration of their village green, marking a milestone described by one person as “better than Christmas”.

People living in the Oughtonhead area of Hitchin had been battling for five years to award land near their homes village green status, which affords it protection against development.

? Motorists driving on a major road were focusing on a message sprayed on the tarmac.

A protester had sprayed the words ‘ROAD TAX?’ on the road at the top end of Bedford Road at the junction with Wilbury Hills Road in Letchworth GC after gettong frustrated with the state of the road.