Plans are afoot to transform Kings Langley into a mythical land based on a cult US TV series – but confusion about just what the village’s temporary name change will mean for businesses and residents still abounds.
Many High Street shops and services are excited to see the village change its name to Kings Landing – the setting for fantasy drama Game Of Thrones – for one week next month, with several going all out to embrace the idea.
Confectionery shop Sweet As A Button plans to deck out its store in medieval colours and introduce sweet treats reflecting the show’s themes. Owner Rebecca van de Geest said: “It’s all about bringing in shapes, themes and colours, but they’re just ideas at the moment. No one here really knows the show but I like it – it’s a bizarre idea but it’s kind of cool.”
Alfie Engin and James Sanders of Fred and Ginger Coffee said: “Everyone needs to jump on board with it, there has been talk of some kind of treasure hunt along the High Street. Our chef in the kitchen watches the show, so we have a few ideas, but we don’t know what is going on with it at the moment.”
Dalling and Co wine merchant and deli says it is considering a hog roast themed night which could even incorporate costumes and real mead. But co-owner Claire Carpentier also believes the plans are confusing. She said: “Until the council decides if there are particular events they are going to organise, it is a bit difficult to decide what to do. We are going to have to take a risk with it, but anything which drums up publicity at this time of year is a good thing.”
Kings Langley parish and Dacorum borough councillor Alan Anderson said: “The council has spoken to the businesses who want to participate and we are going to set up a meeting about what is going to happen. We are also taking measures to ensure everything will be safe throughout the week, including cordoning off the sign closer to the M25 as there is nowhere to park.
“We are ready in case swarms of people come – but we have no way of knowing whether it will be three people and their aunt or 3,000 people.
“It has been fascinating to do interviews for the press in Los Angeles. They should be busy with Oscar nominations, but they want to talk to me about this. It has well and truly put Kings Langley on the map.”
Mr Anderson said he is ‘still hopeful’ of getting cast members to visit the village as part of the week-long celebration of the third series’ DVD release.
Kings Langley School is also putting together plans to stage a Game of Thrones-themed art, textiles and graphics project while the school’s choir is working on performing music from the programme.
The school’s Tracey Middleton said: “The pupils have been working really hard on this project to create a series banners relating to the different families in the books and TV show – they are really excited by it.
“The school likes to join in with anything the community does as we are quite a big part of it.”