Saturday 27 January 2024



Ann Rattue

We were saddened by Ann's passing notified in the Watford Observer, the sort of news none of us relish, but indeed realise that it comes to all of us at some time.

Our history group was injected with a charge of brilliant light when about ten years back, this lady on two sticks walked into a meeting announcing her presence as she cleared a place at the table.  From that time on, we knew we had to keep going as we felt inspired by Ann's passion for making things happen.

We learned later that Ann had suffered sickness as a young person, lost very near and dear close relatives due to unexpected deaths and had generally not been given the best hand of cards in life. However, undaunted, even into her 70's and early 80's she continued to learn, pass on knowledge acquired over a lifetime, smile at adversity and be resolute in reaching goals.

One of the goals she wished to reach with us was to establish a place in history for the memorial etched bricks on the walls of Watford General Hospital.  These bricks, inscribed by male residents of the Watford Workhouse in the mid-19th century, are in jeopardy due to erosion and damage.  Ann wrote to the press and hospital authorities expressing our concern that if left unprotected and recognised, these memorials would eventually fall into obscurity.  Ann has guided and encouraged us to keep our Save the Bricks campaign in the public eye and information about the research and findings Ann and other members of our history group have made may be gleaned from our website.

We have lost a dear friend and as a tribute to her dedication to any cause or task she undertook, will continue with our campaign to save the bricks and to also ensure that other aspects of West Watford's industrial and social history remain an important part of our town's heritage.

Our thoughts are with Ann's family at this very sad time.




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