Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Old Town Walk

Don't forget, free guided walks in the Old Town on Tuesdays continue into August, when they become a wee bit more irregular, as in, many more! See the Old Hastings Preservation Society website for more details. May be a bit damp today...

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Hastings Pier, more on and of!

This weekend, 'Heritage Interpretation' volunteers and members of the Pier’s volunteer archive group have been on hand in The Deck’s new heritage space, the Memories Room, to assist visitors with the new exhibits and to share their knowledge of the history of Hastings Pier. To access the absorbing Charity's "Digital Memories" go to the website.

The wee shop downstairs in The Deck, and I already have my first keepsake, a china mug, from which I am currently sipping tea! There are also refreshments downstairs now...

And more seating, and now appropriate information panels, are appearing round the Pier.

And here are a couple of photographs, being shared on facebook, of the Madness concert at last week's Grand Opening ceremony, many thanks to whoever originally posted them!

That's all for now folks! 

Saturday, 28 May 2016

What's on for the weekend...

Well, there's quite a bit happening, and here's a taste...

Hastings Pier continues to have its funfair, cinema, a "Heritage Weekend", with volunteers helping visitors to the Memories Room, and free workshops for everyone in the family, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (see website).   

Until they return on the 25th June, this Saturday will see the last free Stade Walk organised by the Old Hastings Preservation Society, meeting at the Fishermen's Museum at 11.00 (the programme of organised walks is on their website).

And I have no idea how I missed this! But this year's 1066 Wine & Food Festival comes to an end this weekend, culminating in a finale celebration on Sunday 29th at St Mary in the Castle (website).
Furthermore, Hastings’ Blue Reef Aquarium is going green for the May Half Term holidays (Saturday, May 28th- Sunday, June 5th), marking World Environment Day on June 5th and World Oceans Day on June 8th. The popular TV show Octonauts has joined forces with the organisers of World Oceans Day to create a series of events and Octonauts-themed activities based around conservation.

Blue Reef will be using the Octonauts trail provided by World Oceans Day, as well as having special ‘conservation stations’ set up beside the aquarium’s main ocean display where younger visitors can record what they plan to do to help the environment. There will also be Octonauts’ colouring sheets to complete and a scavenger hunt around the displays highlighting the major threats posed by pollution and other manmade factors like global warming. 

Blue Reef’s Leanna Lawson said: “We wanted to put together a positive package of activities, talks, trails and events which highlights the importance of the natural world for all of us; wherever we live in the world. Our aim is to provide practical advice which visitors of all ages can follow which will help safeguard the environment. As well as international projects and campaigns we are also focusing on local issues; like our regular beach clean events.”   

Now in its 44th year, World Environment Day (WED) aims to raise global awareness to take positive environmental action to protect nature and the planet Earth. It is run by the United Nations Environment Programme.  

World Oceans Day's aim is to celebrate the world's ocean and its rich diversity of life; highlighting global ocean awareness, education and action programmes to promote a healthy and productive ocean. It also acts as a reminder to nations, governments, businesses, and individuals, of their responsibility to protect the world's living oceans and conserve resources for present and future generations. 

Have fun!.   

Thursday, 26 May 2016

What a lovely world we live in...

That's irony... I just saw a young lass trying to run away from a number of Sports Direct staff... Pleading innocence, so why are you running away?!? Life... 

Burgers in Hastings: Vegetarians look away please!

All this talk I've been hearing about a wonderful burger bar in Hastings titillated my interest, but I couldn't get past this 100% lamb burger (secret recipe of the chef's, with spices et al added, of course, but certainly no breadcrumbs!) at the First in Last Out (FILO) in the High Street; very tasty, very delicious, this would be very hard to beat, burger-wise!

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Last Day of Art Exhibition at Stade Hall.

Today is the last day of the East Sussex Arts Club Art Exhibition at the Stade Hall; see their website for more information about them and this exhibition.

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

St Mary's Restaurant + Walk.

Well, I've been waiting for the new management of St Mary's Restaurant, below St Mary in the Castle, to reopen the restaurant/cafe, but not a lot appears to be happening. I had a chat with someone in the know, and we'll have a little longer to wait, some technical problem apparently...

Oh, and don't forget the free guided 'old town' walk that starts up at the top of the West Hill Lift at 2.30pm this afternoon; see the Old Hastings Preservation Society website for more details of this, and of their Stade guided walks.

Monday, 23 May 2016

Old Town Hall Meeting This Evening.

Meeting 6.00 for 6.30 Monday 23rd May – History House 


1] Jobs agreed – how should we fill them ?
* Volunteers manager; Bookings /Programme manager ; Exhibition Co- ordinator; Premises manager ; Cleaners ; Fundraising team; Publicity team + Information team; Retail team ; Day to Day treasurer; Education officer; +++

2] Expressions of interest from various group / activity organisers -
* How should this be approached ?
* Do we need a notional timetable over the week / month etc.
* Booking form
* Fee structure

3] Early bird programme of activities

4] Future agenda items.

Hastings Old Town Hall -Notes from a meeting held 16th May at Hastings History House
10 people present

1 Dick reported that Cllr. Peter Chowney had said there was a commercial bid in from an Old Town business for the OTH but that he would be willing to consider a well prepared bid from the community. He had said that after an initial trial period a rent would be expected.
It was felt a meeting of the steering group with Cllr. Chowney was desirable topics to be covered:
1 Terms of Lease
2 Insurance
3 Business Plan
4 Funding
5 package of users and schedule of events
6 staff and management structure

2 Working group
Jobs to be covered
Funding team – Sue Dawson, Dick Edwards
Publicity Team
Treasurer – Dick reported Phil White [HOTRA’s Treasurer] was happy to keep accounts] leaving a role for day to day financial management/banking etc.
Retail co-ordinator – Jacky Pratt
Education Officer/team – Michelle Frankel

Once/if we have access for temporary use – Keyholder – KC at Jenny Lind + one or two more.
Locking up procedure/security – Jacky Pratt +
Information co-ordinator
Cleaning management /cleaner – though it was expected that users would clean up after themselves and take rubbish away.
Premises co-ordinator – bookings etc.

Key Priorities
Temporary Use – open by August
Public Liability Insurance needed and possibly premises?
Claire Hamill offered a fundraising gig – licensing Dick will enquire of HBC
Michelle Frankel said her group were ready to go - plays and work on ‘Women of Note in Hastings’.
Fair/Market would be comparatively easy to organise and enable us to assess the need for such space.
Storytelling –a request for a monthly venue.
Possibly library use.

3 Funding Strategy
Sue had obtained details of the Foreshore Trust grants, and 1066 fund, Brigit had found out about NISA community fund
Membership – get involved a space for you / Sponsorship
Shares, and crowd funding were thought to be right if longer lease taken on.
A Hiring fee structure was discussed and £10 an hour or £30 a session was felt to be affordable by community groups. % of take for events when tickets sold.

4 Keeping the Community involved
Many thanks to Dee Harvey for excellent poster – to be used on flyers with info on the back.
Social media – volunteers needed/Dick would send article to Hastings Independent/Observer.

5 Dates for meetings – Mondays seemed to suit most people next meeting Monday 23rd 6 for 6.30 at Hastings History House, following was Bank Holiday but it might be possible TBC. It was important to keep the momentum going if we were to succeed.
6 AOB Hastings Embroidery – Dick had circulated a link www.1066.co.nz which was the Bayeux Tapestry made of steel and was due to be displayed in St Mary-in-the-Castle this year. It was felt that the HE would be ideally shown with this.

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Local Job Opportunities...

There are vacancies at the Castle, Smugglers Adventure, and at the Blue Reef Aquarium for Visitor Services Assistants, for more information go to their website.

I didn't make it in the evening!

I didn't make it to the Pier in the evening, though I did take a wander down there in the morning yesterday, and the weather forecast I saw wasn't very good, but Madness were! 

East Sussex Arts Club had their 2016 Exhibition a the Stade, and this continues until Wednesday 25th May (see their website for more details).

Saturday, 21 May 2016

The Pier Opening Gala Celebrations!

So, today's the day, the official Grand Opening Gala Celebrations, and it appears all tickets have been sold; see the new website for further details.

So, unless you're lucky enough to have obtained tickets, access to the Pier will not be possible until tomorrow, Sunday, see the website for upcoming events.

And there's the stage, way down towards the end of the Pier, where there will be VIPs, DJs, and Madness, not to mention a 2,500 crowd! The weather forecast appears to be reasonable for most of the day, though, when Madness play, there may just be some rain, though the wind should have dropped by then...

Enjoy the day, whether on the Pier, beach, or elsewhere, happy days!

Friday, 20 May 2016

White Rock Promenade

Going back 11 months and the proposed regeneration of the White Rock Promenade was being exhibited at the White Rock Hotel (see link), is this the start of the proposed information kiosk?

Is it?

And, is the new surfacing leading to the Pier the start of the 'Pop Up' trading area?

Things do appear to be happening...

Thursday, 19 May 2016

2 imprisoned for drugs supply conspiracy & associated offences.

Two men have been sent to prison after a successful Sussex Police operation against a drugs supply conspiracy in Hastings, in which drugs, with an estimated potential street value of more than £1 million, were seized... For more, go to the Sussex Police website.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Southern Rail, More Industrial Action Today.

As often happens with industrial disputes, both sides accuse the other of not being willing to sit down and talk, oh well, if you're attempting to travel by Southern today, expect problems as there's another 24 hour strike happening!

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Fishermen's Museum: Red Ensign at Half Mast.

I saw that the flag was at half mast this morning, which usually means that a local fisherman has died sadly, so I found out who... 

Paul "Plum" White, sadly, has died at just 55 years old. Our condolences to his family and friends, R.I.P.

Old Town Guided Walk

Don't forget the free Tuesday Guided Walk meets up at 2.30pm at the top of the West Hill Lift, see the Old Hastings Preservation Society website for more details of this and other guided walks, as I described last week.

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Holiday Homes for Premium Rate Council Tax?

If you're trying to figure out where these houses are, don't bother, they're not in Hastings (I didn't want to upset anyone by implying their home is a holiday, or second, home). But, to the point, Hastings Borough Council Leader, Peter Chowney, has suggested to BBC Sunday Politics that greater powers may be sought so that a Council Tax 'Premium' may be imposed on house owners who spend little time in their second/holiday homes in Hastings; hence denying local residents from local accommodation, and also, pushing prices up much higher in specific areas of Hastings.  

Go to the BBC website for more information.

Saturday, 14 May 2016

'Tidying up' the Promenade

A police officer goes to the assistance of her colleague who is talking to some of the less savoury visitors to the Promenade near Warrior Square...

... and the shelters, and railings, are being given a lick of paint along the Promenade.

Of course, I've posted photographs recently of Bottle Alley's tidy up, enjoy!

Friday, 13 May 2016

Old Town Hall Meeting Agenda

Hastings Old Town Hall

Meeting 6.00 for 6.30 Monday 16th May 
History House, Courthouse Street  


1] Cllr Peter Chowney – some good news . The real work starts now.
Possible dates for meeting {daytime preferred}

2] Working Group – jobs to be covered
key priorities
names + organisations + activity 

3] Funding strategy + possible pots
* Foreshore Trust [up to £5k ];
* 1066 Anniversary Community Grants [ up to £3k ];
* Making a difference locally;
* Crowdfunding ;
* Parish Appeal asking for 1] money OR 2] volunteers OR 3] connections to funders OR 4] all or some of these! 

4] Keeping the community informed and involved – including Facebook Instagram etc 

5] Dates for meetings. 

Free Guided Stade Walk!

Starting tomorrow, Saturday 14th, at 11.00, the first of many free guided Stade Walks this year, meeting outside the Fishermen's Museum in Rock-a-Nore Road; the walks continue for another 2 weeks, then the timetable changes a bit, go to the Old Hastings Preservation Society website for more details. Also, don't forget the Tuesday Old Town Walks!

These are free, but donations to the Fishermen's Museum are appreciated, many thanks!

‘Smiling Tigers' at the Blue Reef Aquarium!

A pair of tiger salamanders has recently gone on display at the Blue Reef Aquarium in Rock-a-Nore. Originally from the USA, the tiger salamander is the world’s largest species and can reach lengths of up to 30 centimetres.

As well as being the biggest they also have the reputation for being the happiest as they appear to have a perpetual grin, as can be seen in the photograph above! They are part of the mole salamander family which also includes the Critically Endangered axolotl; known as the ‘Peter Pans’ of the animal world, axolotls remain in their tadpole stage for their entire lives.

Found throughout the USA, tiger salamanders live in burrows on the edge of swamps and other watery environments. They can live for up to 20 years and fully grown adults have been known to catch frogs and mice.

Blue Reef Aquarium’s Leanna Lawson said: “Mole salamanders like these are definitely one of the more unusual species of reptile. We already have some of their cousins, the axolotls, on display, but this is the first time we have had tiger salamanders as well. Although ours still have quite a lot of growing to do they are already impressive looking specimens. 

 “I think a lot of their popularity with visitors and the zoological team is they always look so happy. It’s difficult to look at them and not want to laugh because of these daft grins they’ve got,” she added.

Tiger salamanders get their name from the tan to yellow vertical bars on their dark brown to black bodies; the bars vary in thickness. They come from central Nebraska down to southern Texas, and west to central Colorado and New Mexico. The tiger salamander is the 'state amphibian' for Kansas. 

For more information, go to their website.

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Cinema on the Pier!

OK, before I talk about the films to come, I sat at the end of the Pier, and noticed these FREE binoculars, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, and yes, I did use these ones, though there are a few more available for different directions, though they swivel! 

And today sees the start of Cinema on the Pier, with "A Pier", the story of Hastings Pier, from 7pm... tomorrow will be Jaws! Much more to come, of course; see the Luna Cinema website for more details, eg future films include Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Saturday, and to book tickets. 

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Art by the Sea, and you couldn't get any closer!

And I mean you couldn't get any closer! From the old Lido (above) to the Azur Pavilion opposite Marine Court at St Leonards, below...

Even more exciting is our very own 'Banksy', from 2010!

Not bad though, a free exhibition literally by the sea! 

Monday, 9 May 2016

Free Guided Old Town Walks

Old Hastings Preservation Society are organising free walks touring the Old Town every Tuesday (and other days later in the year, website) afternoon until October. Tomorrow, starting at 2.30pm from the top of West Hill Lift; walk up and enjoy this view from the top... 

Walking back down into the Old Town (I'm guessing the direction!).

Or you could go up by the West Hill Lift in George Street, obviously...

The weather forecast for tomorrow isn't great, so have wet weather gear available!