INSIDER INC

The cargo behind Beirut's blast

The cargo behind Beirut's blast

2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate was impounded in Beirut's port after it was seized from an abandoned ship in 2014, years before the explosion.

Covid cargo shipping crisis

Covid cargo shipping crisis

'I think I will commit suicide': Cargo ship workers have been trapped at sea for months because of COVID-19, banned from ports, and predict 'anarchy' if things don't change.

Trump's misleading photo

Trump's misleading photo

A Trump campaign ad depicting a police officer being attacked by protesters is actually a 2014 photo of pro-democracy protests in Ukraine.

The spine handbag that went viral

The spine handbag that went viral

A flamboyant Instagram fashion star is selling a handbag he says is made from a human spine 'ethically sourced' from Canada.

Living skin delivery, anyone?

Living skin delivery, anyone?

I interviewed Genoskin, a biotech company collecting human skin donated from cosmetic surgery and keeping it alive for testing.

Elephant death probe stalls

Elephant death probe stalls

Botswana's government is stalling efforts to get to the bottom of 350 mysterious elephant deaths, conservationists say.

Mcdonald's in the Covid era

Mcdonald's in the Covid era

What's it like to dine in at a post-COVID-19 McDonald's: Hazard tape, contact-tracing forms, and eerie quiet.

Polish underground salt palace

Polish underground salt palace

Photos: Inside an ancient Polish salt mine that has underground lakes, fully carved chapels, and chandeliers made of salt.

What 'triggered' really means

What 'triggered' really means

An intruder in my apartment gave me PTSD symptoms for months. Here's what people get wrong about being 'triggered.'

WELWYN HATFIELD TIMES

No more Bounty ladies

No more Bounty ladies

WHTimes/Comet, June 2019. NHS Trust finally ends Bounty contract after massive ICO fine. The ruling against Welwyn Garden City company Bounty represents a victory for local campaigners.

Chakrabarti visits Hatfield tower

Chakrabarti visits Hatfield tower

WHT, February 2019. The shadow attorney general bore witness to the conditions at an ill-maintained council tower block.

Battle to save sports hall

Battle to save sports hall

WHTimes, Jan 2019. The people of Welwyn Garden City put up an unexpected fight against the closure of a much loved GLL-run sports centre.

High-rise lift condemned

High-rise lift condemned

WHTimes, January 2019. Tenants of a beleaguered council high-rise are "devastated" to have to couch-surf over Christmas and New Year after the lift is condemned.

#Cubegate

#Cubegate

WHTimes, Dec 2018. The culmination of an important long-running Welwyn Garden City public seating story.

'One in a million' handbag find

'One in a million' handbag find

WHTimes/Herts Ad, Nov 2018. A local postie, while planting bulbs, digs up a handbag stolen 40 years earlier on a public path, and returns it to its owner.

How to catch a shooting star

How to catch a shooting star

WHTimes/Herts Ad/Comet/Royston Crow Nov 2018. I spoke to an astronomer from Herts Uni about watching autumn's meteor showers. Silly quiz for good measure.

Lib Dems canvass deceased politican

Lib Dems canvass deceased politican

WHTimes, Nov 2018. A Lib Dem campaign letter was sent to the councillor whose tragic death triggered the by-election in the first place.

Vandals flood hospice store

Vandals flood hospice store

WHTimes, Nov 2018. Storage facilities of a cherished hospice charity shop were flooded after vandals damaged water pipes, damaging £1,000s of stock. The community - as ever - showed up.

Head gets political over cash

Head gets political over cash

For WHTimes, Nov 2018. A headteacher finally snapped over Phillip Hammond's 'little extras' for schools budget and told parents to write to MP Grant Shapps.

Raise a glass to the Armistice

Raise a glass to the Armistice

WHTimes, Nov 2018. A local historian painstakingly resurrected the beer recipes of a Hatfield brewery that died with the horrors of the Somme.

Arriva never arrives

Arriva never arrives

WHTimes, Nov 2018. A group of schoolchildren, their parents, and their MP Grant Shapps are frustrated by half a term of poor school bus service.

Watch out for bodysnatchers

Watch out for bodysnatchers

WHTimes/Comet Oct 2018. A Halloween archive dive found a local man who had been buried - twice.

Eddie the Eagle to the rescue

Eddie the Eagle to the rescue

WHTimes, Oct 2018. Britain's favourite ski hero speaks up in defence of a dry slope endangered by the Welwyn Hatfield Local Plan.

Dad vs commerce on NHS wards

Dad vs commerce on NHS wards

WHTimes, Oct 2018. An incredibly tenacious Welwyn Garden City campaigner got his petition against commercial reps on NHS wards considered by the government.

Brexitometer vs Shapps

Brexitometer vs Shapps

WHTimes, Oct 2018. A Brexitometer showed up in the town where MP Grant Shapps lives. The results were inconvenient.

Ken's wheelchair challenge

Ken's wheelchair challenge

WHTimes, Oct 2018. [Video] A redoubtable WGC resident took councillors - and me - on a tour to see the issues with footpaths for wheelchair users.

Rail workers turn to God

Rail workers turn to God

WHTimes/Comet/Royston Crow Sep 2018: A rare insight into rail workers' experience of public abuse during the botched Govia timetable rollout, via the little-known Railway Chaplains.

Labour falls foul of Corrie

Labour falls foul of Corrie

WHTimes, Sep 2018. Welwyn Hatfield's Labour leader Kieran Thorpe is somehow embroiled in a Twitter row about antisemitism with a Coronation Street actress.

Mouldy council housing

Mouldy council housing

WHTimes, Sep 2018. Welwyn Hatfield council have been renovating Queensway House - slowly. Residents are angered over damp, mould and security issues.

Haulier's Brexit warning

Haulier's Brexit warning

WHTimes, Sep 2018. A WGC haulage company boss, who drove trucks before we joined the EEC, warns of Brexit price hikes.

Crisis in bus funding

Crisis in bus funding

WHTimes/HertsAd, Aug 2018 [Infographic] A 77% drop in Herts bus subsidies has led to 16 Welwyn Hatfield bus routes being cancelled or privatised.

Grieving mother's safety plea

Grieving mother's safety plea

WHTimes, Aug 2018: 20 years after her son tragically fell through a skylight, a mother pleads with youths to think about the dangers of climbing buildings.

Grade II listed bridge crumbles

Grade II listed bridge crumbles

WHTimes, Aug 2018: Walkers were shocked to see parts of the Grade II-listed, 18th C palladian bridge had collapsed into the lake below. Later we'd find out a golf buggy had crashed into it.

Herts Brexit care worker crisis

Herts Brexit care worker crisis

WHTimes/Royston Crow/Comet/Herts Ad, Aug 2018: Herts County Council know there's a care worker crisis. They think Brexit will make it worse.

Shapps blockchain backtrack

Shapps blockchain backtrack

WHTimes, Aug 2018. Grant Shapps defends listing a potentially profitable role on a high-tech APPG as 'unpaid' on the parliamentary register of interests.

Whose pics are these?

Whose pics are these?

WHTimes, Aug 2018. A shopper in Devon found eight decades of family pics stamped with 'Welwyn Hatfield Times' in her Amazon delivery. I found their owners.

Rail cafe suffers from Govia chaos

Rail cafe suffers from Govia chaos

WHTimes, July 2018. The story of a platform cafe facing undeserved business losses due to the Great Northern timetable fiasco.

Taxi driver strike

Taxi driver strike

WHTimes, July 2018. Cross-border licensing isn't just an Uber issue for WGC taxi drivers. Joined by the GMB, they protested London cabbies on their patch.

Festival antisemitism row

Festival antisemitism row

WHTimes/Comet, July 2018. Knebworth's Geronimo Festival was marred by a fiery discussion about how a display of historical antisemitic material was framed.

Ramadan in WGC

Ramadan in WGC

WHTimes, June 2018. 2.4% of Welwyn Hatfield's residents are Muslim, and I spoke to one family about fasting, and worshipping, when the holy month falls in summer.

Utterly massive flytip

Utterly massive flytip

WHTimes/HertsAd, June 2018. In one of the biggest flytips the county has ever seen, rubbish stretched for acres in a picturesque wooded public footpath.

A bit of World Cup nostalgia

A bit of World Cup nostalgia

WHTimes, June 2018. When the 1966 visiting World Cup teams stayed in WGC, they ... had tantrums about that.

Council leader quits Tories

Council leader quits Tories

WHTimes, May 2018: self-described 'lifelong Conservative' councillor Frank Bowron quit saying 'it's the last straw'.

How long will you live?

How long will you live?

WHTimes, May 2018 [Infographic]. Life expectancy figures show a ten-year disparity between the richest and poorest areas of Welwyn Hatfield.

Volunteering at the night shelter

Volunteering at the night shelter

WHTimes, April 2018. I helped out for a night at Hatfield Night Shelter to see first-hand how this unique community project is run.

Adorable campaign blunder

Adorable campaign blunder

WHTimes, March 2018. A Conservative council hopeful vows in a leaflet sent to thousands to fight 'tooth and nail' to save a WGC surgery that ... isn't closing.

"Inadequate" rating for school

"Inadequate" rating for school

WHTimes, March 2018. The entire board of a Potters Bar school has resigned amid conflict of interest accusations after it went from "outstanding" to special measures in just three years.

School stats explained

School stats explained

WHTimes, Oct 2017. Fresh government figures revealed how well Welwyn Hatfield and Potters Bar secondary schools performed in the last year.

Welwyn Hatfield's most haunted

Welwyn Hatfield's most haunted

WHTimes, Oct 2017. A Halloween roundup of local ghost rumours, including Dame Barbara Cartland's pet dog.

M25 cat killer strikes again

M25 cat killer strikes again

WHTimes, Oct 2017. A cat belonging to a Potters Bar woman appears to have become the latest victim of the “M25 cat killer”.

Death of a town character

Death of a town character

Comet, Sep 2017. Biggleswade bade farewell to one of its most cherished residents, Paul ‘Willy’ Clifford, who passed away in his sleep.