Water Gardens refurb: Will toy bus be raised from watery grave?

Work on Hemel Hempstead's Water Gardens.
Work on Hemel Hempstead's Water Gardens.

A man could be reunited with his treasured red toy bus - 28 years after he lost it in Hemel Hempstead’s Water Gardens.

Mum Jacky Atkins has recounted the moment her son Daniel, dropped his toy into the water when he was just seven years old.

She has shared her memory as part of the Jellicoe Water Gardens memories project.rk

It comes as the town centre attraction, opened in 1962, is being restored thanks to lottery funding and it is possible that workers may come across the toy bus as they remove silt from the mucky waters.

Jacky told Liz Warriner, from the Friends of Jellicoe Water Gardens, “He just held it over the water looking and then just opened his hand and then watched fascinated as it made a plop into the water, disappeared down and buried itself into the mud at the bottom.

“I said to him, that’s it you’ve lost it and he looked and he said well I want my bus back and I said well you can’t have it, it’s gone into the mud.

“I seem to remember that he made a bit of a fuss.

“I think he just wanted to see what was going to happen. 
It was a special moment between him and the bus.”

Daniel is now 35 and a father himself, but Jacky joked: “If anyone ever digs out the red Dinky toy bus, that’s Dan’s. I’m sure he would love to be reunited.”

The Friends of Jellicoe Water Gardens would like to hear people’s memories of the Water Gardens, especially before the landmark was created or while it was being built.

Contact Liz at fotjwg@gmail.com, search ‘Friends of Jellicoe Water Gardens’ on Facebook.

Listen to Jacky’s full story at www.ourdacorum.org.uk