Never mind king of the mountains The Hub is king of the cafes!

The Hub at RedbournContinuing my tour of the cafes and tea shops of Hertfordshire my latest destination was The Hub in Redbourn. This has previously been a newsagents, a pet shop and a ski shop. Today it’s a cafe with a clever and novel string to its bow, or should I say spoke in its wheel, because it’s also a cycle repair shop. Propelled to the front by two Olympians most of us had never heard of just a few years ago, cycling has never been more popular. I know because I’m forever getting stuck behind its adherents on our country roads! So if you’re out and about on your wheels The Hub offers a welcome resting place for tired legs or cure for a punctured tyre. My visit was also wheels related. My car was having an MOT down the road. The Hub is like someone’s cosy front parlour, all beams, exposed brickwork and the odd bike. Pam is barista in chief, lovingly creating everything from lattes to my double macciato. The head honcho is Simon Barnes, a local cycling enthusiast who came up with the idea when a friend from New Zealand introduced him to the aroma-rich world of coffee. I’m giving The Hub the yellow jersey for ambience and flavour.

I was intrigued to see a UFO-like object flying in Gadebridge Park the other evening. It was a brightly lit glider, looking like some exotic bird of paradise in its green, yellow and orange LED plumage. You can see one here on this youtube clip http://youtu.be/mw6ofGPwlbI. Amazing. I’m sure the Chinese will soon be making these by the million!

Hats off to the Rex Cinema in Berkhamsted for another excellent month of films. As well as Arbitrage (up there with Margin Call and Wall Street among the best money movies) we went to see something right at the other end of the social spectrum: an Italian film set in a Rome jail. ‘Caesar Must Die’ is a modern day version of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar with the cast consisting of prisoners with no acting experience. They did a terrific job. But after the elation of performing you could almost feel their pain when they had to return to their cells. Unusually for the Rex it was far and away the lowest attended screening I’ve ever seen there. Shakespeare with sub-titles is clearly not Box Office.