St Albans Review of the Year: May

First published in News St Albans & Harpenden Review: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A man was stabbed outside a hairdressing salon at The Quadrant in Marshalswick in May. An employee from a nearby businesses was one of the first people to reach the victim, who was in his 30s.

She said: “It frightened the life out of me to find someone who had been stabbed, there was so much blood. It was such a frightening experience. You don’t expect anything like this around the Quadrant. We’ve never had any trouble like this before.”

Frank and Louise Varey were later arrested and charged with GBH in connection with the attack, however Mr Varey passed away while waiting for trial.

Mrs Varey is due to appear in court next year. A mother was left heartbroken when her home went up in flames - just a few days after the anniversary of her daughter’s death.

Lisa Taylor, 33, and her sons Liam, nine, Kian, five, and Jackson, one, of Camp Road were out on the school run at 8.30am on Friday when the fire started. T

he children’s father was in the house at the time of the blaze, which started in an upstairs bedroom, but managed to escape.

The fire happened just a few days after the third anniversary of the death of Ms Taylor’s daughter, Cody. The nine-year-old died after suffering an asthma attack in 2009.

Ms Taylor said as soon as she told the firefighters what had happened they rushed in to save as many of her photographs and belongings as possible.

She added: “I had kept things that reminded me and the boys of her. “It was stuff I was so happy to see. I would like to thank the firemen because they tried to save so many of her belongings. It means so much.”

After the fire, kind-hearted residents grouped together to collect some of the essential items which the family lost in the fire.

Neighbour Teresa Ryan, who is organising the collection, said: “They’ve lost everything. A lifetime of memories is just destroyed. “We can’t give them back their memories but we will do what we can.”

Deranged boyfriend Sebastiano Mauro went to a stable and slashed his ex-lover’s horse in a revenge attack after their affair ended with his arrest for an alleged assault.

Mauro, a surgical nurse, used a sharp bladed instrument to attack the ten-year old bay coloured mare called Jessie.

But Mauro’s campaign of terror against Jessie’s owner, Nathalie Kelderman, 36, was far from over.

Two months later, after being released on bail from prison where he had been held following the attack, he turned up outside Miss Kelderman’s flat in St Albans.

Determined to attack her once more, he was armed with a carving knife, two screwdrivers, scalpel blades, a tourniquet, latex gloves, empty syringes and two syringes containing his own blood.

Luckily, two police officers, concerned he might try to get to her, discovered him yards from her flat and once more he was arrested.

Mauro was sentenced to five years in jail and the horse made a full recovery. Hundreds of anti-GM protesters descended on Harpenden on Sunday to demonstrate against trials taking place at Rothamsted Research.

Campaigners gathered in nearby Rothamsted Park after an order was issued by St Albans District Council banning the public from the research site.

Campaign group Take the Flour Back organised the event to demonstrate against the genetically modified wheat trials.

Police horses and the force’s helicopter were part of the large operation set up by Hertfordshire Constabulary The day remained peaceful and people spent the afternoon listening to guest speakers and live music.

Some people travelled from as far away as Africa and France to be part of the demonstration. Police estimated that about 200 people attended the demonstration but Take the Flour Back say it was double that.

A 50-year-old man was arrested prior to the event and two men, aged 25 and 26, were arrested during the protest.

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