Review of the year 2018: March
PUBLISHED: 10:03 28 December 2018
In March we saw a laptop explosion, a George Cross for brave police dog Finn and a hoax bomber all make the news.
Letchworth business Allplas suffered a major fire after a laptop ‘exploded’ when it was left on charge overnight.
CCTV recorded the moment that the laptop burst into flames which destroyed Steve Paffett’s office off Works Road.
He told the Comet at the time: “I don’t think anywhere near enough of us are aware of the potential ‘bombs’ we have indoors. I was sat at that seat earlier that day and I swear it would have taken my face off or killed me.”
It was announced in March that hero police dog Finn was to receive the animals’ George Cross after being stabbed in Stevenage in 2016,
Finn’s actions saved the life of his handler PC Dave Wardell during an attack by a suspect – although Finn had sustained two serious stab wounds he refused to let the suspect go.
German shepherd Finn has since retired and is now the Wardell family pet.
A memorial bench was dedicated to Baldock nursery school staff member and Balstock treasurer Elaine LaRoche, who sadly died in April 2017.
Elaine was a well-known and popular member of the Baldock community, and Weston Way Nursery commissioned the Welsh oak bench to be made in her memory.
Her popularity was reflected in the outpouring of condolences and donations made towards the bench, which now takes pride of place in the nursery garden.
Headteacher Jane Millett said: “Elaine always played such an important and pivotal role in the Baldock community, and we will endeavour to ensure that she is always remembered.”
Thanks to the town’s generosity, the school were also able to donated £2,000 to the Hertfordshire Breast Unit Appeal.
Schools across the country were sent hoax bomb threats in March, including The Valley School in Stevenage and Fairfield Park Lower in Fairfield.
The malicious threats caused disruption for parents across Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire, with some being asked to come and collect their children.
It later transpired that a teenage boy from Watford was responsible for sending the emails.
George Duke-Cohan, 19, was later sentenced to three years in prison at Luton Crown Court.