Hastings /ˈheɪstɪŋz/ is a town and borough in East Sussex on the south coast of England, 24 mi (39 km) east of the county town of Lewes and 53 mi (85 km) south east of London. It has an estimated population of 90,254.
Today, Hastings is a fishing port with a beach-based fishing fleet.
Borough of Hastings
Coat of arms
Hastings shown within East Sussex
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Region||South East England|
|• Total||29.72 km2 (11.47 sq mi)|
|• Density||3,300/km2 (8,600/sq mi)|
|Website||Hastings Borough Council|
The first mention of Hastings is found in the late 8th century in the form Hastingas. This is derived from the Old English tribal name Hæstingas, meaning `the constituency (followers) of Hæsta'. Symeon of Durham records the victory of Offa in 771 over the Hestingorum gens, that is, "the people of the Hastings tribe." Hastingleigh in Kent was named after that tribe. The place name Hæstingaceaster is found in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle entry for 1050, and may be an alternative name for Hastings. However, the absence of any archaeological remains of or documentary evidence for a Roman fort at Hastings suggest that Hæstingaceaster may refer to a different settlement, most likely that based on the Roman remains at Pevensey.
Evidence of prehistoric settlements have been found at the town site: flint arrowheads and Bronze Age artefacts have been found. Iron Age forts have been excavated on both the East and West Hills. This suggests that the inhabitants moved early to the safety of the valley in between the forts. The settlement was already based on the port when the Romans arrived in Britain for the first time in 55 BC. At this time, they began to exploit the iron (Wealden rocks provide a plentiful supply of the ore), and shipped it out by boat. Iron was worked locally at Beauport Park, to the north of the town. It employed up to one thousand men and is considered to have been the third-largest mine in the Roman Empire.
With the departure of the Romans, the town suffered setbacks. The Beauport site was abandoned, and the town suffered from problems from nature and man-made attacks. The Sussex coast has always suffered from occasional violent storms; with the additional hazard of longshore drift (the eastward movement of shingle along the coast), the coastline has been frequently changing. The original Roman port is likely now under the sea.
From the 6th century AD until 771, the people of the area around modern-day Hastings, identified the territory as that of the Haestingas tribe and a kingdom separate from the surrounding kingdoms of Suth Saxe ("South Saxons", i.e. Sussex) and Kent. It worked to retain its separate cultural identity until the 11th century. The kingdom was probably a sub-kingdom, the object of a disputed overlordship by the two powerful neighbouring kingdoms: when King Wihtred of Kent settled a dispute with King Ine of Sussex & Wessex in 694, it is probable that he seceded the overlordship of Haestingas to Ine as part of the treaty.
In 771 King Offa of Mercia invaded Southern England, and over the next decade gradually seized control of Sussex and Kent. Symeon of Durham records a battle fought at an unidentified location near Hastings in 771, at which Offa defeated the Haestingas tribe, effectively ending its existence as a separate kingdom. By 790, Offa controlled Hastings effectively enough to confirm grants of land in Hastings to the Abbey of St Denis, in Paris. But, the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle for 1011 relates that Vikings overran "all Kent, Sussex, Surrey and Haestingas", indicating the town was still considered a separate 'county' or province to its neighbours 240 years after Offa's conquest.
The start of the Norman Conquest was the Battle of Hastings, fought on 14 October 1066, although the battle itself took place 8 mi (13 km) to the north at Senlac Hill, and William had landed on the coast between Hastings and Eastbourne at Pevensey. It is thought that the Norman encampment was on the town's outskirts, where there was open ground; a new town was already being built in the valley to the east. That "New Burgh" was founded in 1069 and is mentioned in the Domesday Book as such. William defeated and killed Harold Godwinson, the last Saxon King of England, and destroyed his army, thus opening England to the Norman conquest.
William caused a castle to be built at Hastings probably using the earthworks of the existing Saxon castle.
Hastings was shown as a borough by the time of the Domesday Book (1086); it had also given its name to the Rape of Hastings, one of the six administrative divisions of Sussex. As a borough, Hastings had a corporation consisting of a "bailiff, jurats, and commonalty". By a Charter of Elizabeth I in 1589, the bailiff was replaced by a mayor.
By the end of the Saxon period, the port of Hastings had moved eastward near the present town centre in the Priory Stream valley, whose entrance was protected by the White Rock headland (since demolished). It was to be a short stay: Danish attacks and huge floods in 1011 and 1014 motivated the townspeople to relocate to the New Burgh.
In the Middle Ages Hastings became one of the Cinque Ports; Sandwich, Dover and New Romney being the first, Hastings and Hythe followed, all finally being joined by Rye and Winchelsea, at one point 42 towns were directly or indirectly affiliated with the group.
In the 13th century, much of the town and half of Hastings Castle was washed away in the South England flood of February 1287. During a naval campaign of 1339, and again in 1377, the town was raided and burnt by the French, and seems then to have gone into a decline. As a port, Hastings' days were finished.
Hastings had suffered over the years from the lack of a natural harbour, and there have been attempts to create a sheltered harbour. Attempts were made to build a stone harbour during the reign of Elizabeth I, but the foundations were destroyed by the sea in terrible storms. The fishing boats are still stored on and launched from the beach.
Hastings was then just a small fishing settlement, but it was soon discovered that the new taxes on luxury goods could be made profitable by smuggling; the town was ideally located for that purpose. Near the castle ruins, on the West Hill, are "St Clement's Caves", partly natural, but mainly excavated by hand by smugglers from the soft sandstone. Their trade was to come to an end with the period following the Napoleonic Wars, for the town became one of the most fashionable resorts in Britain, brought about by the so-called health-giving properties of seawater, as well as the local springs and Roman baths. Once this came about the expansion of the town took place, to the west, since there was little space left in the valley.
It was at this time that the elegant Pelham Crescent and Wellington Square were built: other building followed. In the Crescent (designed by architect Joseph Kay) is the classical style church of St Mary in the Castle (its name recalling the old chapel in the castle above) now in use as an arts centre. The building of the crescent and the church necessitated further cutting away of the castle hill cliffs. Once that move away from the old town had begun, it led to the further expansion along the coast, eventually linking up with the new St Leonards.
Like many coastal towns, the population of Hastings grew significantly as a result of the construction of railway links and the fashionable growth of seaside holidays during the Victorian era. In 1801, its population was a mere 3,175; by 1831, it had reached over ten thousand; by 1891, it was almost sixty thousand.
The last harbour project began in 1896, but this also failed when structural problems and rising costs exhausted all the available funds. Today a fractured seawall is all that remains of what might have become a magnificent harbour. In 1897, the foundation stone was laid on a large concrete structure, but there was insufficient money to complete the work and the "Harbour arm" remains uncompleted. It was later partially blown up to discourage possible use by German invasion forces during World War II.
Between 1903 and 1919 Fred Judge FRPS photographed many of the towns events and disasters. These included storms, the first tram, visit of the Lord Mayor of London, Hastings Marathon Race and the pier fire of 1917. Many of these images were produced as picture postcards by the British Postcard manufacturer he founded now known as Judges Postcards.
In the 1930s, the town underwent some rejuvenation. Seaside resorts were starting to go out of fashion: Hastings perhaps more than most. The town council set about a huge rebuilding project, among which the promenade was rebuilt, and an Olympic-size bathing pool was erected. The latter, regarded in its day as one of the best open-air swimming and diving complexes in Europe, later became a holiday camp before closing in 1986. It was demolished, but the area is still known by locals as "The Bathing Pool".
The 2001 census reported over 85,000 inhabitants.
Hastings returned two Members of Parliament from the 14th century until 1885, since when it has returned one. Since 1983, it has been part of the parliamentary constituency of Hastings and Rye; the current MP, since 2010, is Amber Rudd of the Conservative Party. Prior to 1983, the town formed the Hastings parliamentary constituency by itself.
Hastings, it is thought, was a Saxon town before the arrival of the Normans: the Domesday Book refers to a new Borough: as a borough, Hastings had a corporation consisting of a "bailiff, jurats, and commonalty". Its importance was such that it also gave its name to one of the six Rapes or administrative districts of Sussex.
By a Charter of Elizabeth I in 1589 the bailiff was replaced by a mayor, by which time the town's importance was dwindling. In the Georgian era, patronage of such seaside places (such as nearby Brighton) gave it a new lease of life so that, when the time came with the reform of English local government in 1888, Hastings became a County Borough, responsible for all its local services, independent of the surrounding county, then Sussex (East); less than one hundred years later, in 1974, that status was abolished.
Hastings Borough Council is now in the second tier of local government, below East Sussex County Council. The Labour Party has an overall control of the council with 23 seats, whilst the Conservative Party holds 9 seats and one is held by an independent. The Borough is divided into sixteen electoral wards; Ashdown, Baird, Braybrooke, Castle, Central St Leonards, Conquest, Gensing, Hollington, Maze Hill, Old Hastings, Ore, St Helens, Silverhill, Tressell, West St Leonards and Wishing Tree. The council leader is Peter Chowney, who stood against Rudd as a Labour candidate in the 2017 election.
Hastings is situated where the sandstone beds, at the heart of the Weald, known geologically as the Hastings Sands, meet the English Channel, forming tall cliffs to the east of the town. Hastings Old Town is in a sheltered valley between the East Hill and West Hill (on which the remains of the Castle stand). In Victorian times and later the town has spread westwards and northwards, and now forms a single urban centre with the more suburban area of St Leonards-on-Sea to the west. Roads from the Old Town valley lead towards the Victorian area of Clive Vale and the former village of Ore, from which "The Ridge", marking the effective boundary of Hastings, extends north-westwards towards Battle. Beyond Bulverhythe, the western end of Hastings is marked by low-lying land known as Glyne Gap, separating it from Bexhill-on-Sea.
The sandstone cliffs have been the subject of considerable erosion in relatively recent times: much of the Castle was lost to the sea before the present sea defences and promenade were built, and a number of cliff-top houses are in danger of disappearing around the nearby village of Fairlight.
The beach is mainly shingle, although wide areas of sand are uncovered at low tide. The town is generally built upon a series of low hills rising to 500 ft (150 m) above sea level at "The Ridge" before falling back in the river valley further to the north.
There are three Sites of Special Scientific Interest within the borough; Marline Valley Woods, Combe Haven and Hastings Cliffs To Pett Beach. Marline Valley Woods lies within the Ashdown ward of Hastings. It is an ancient woodland of Pedunculate oak—hornbeam which is uncommon nationally. Sussex Wildlife Trust own part of the site. Combe Haven is another site of biological interest, with alluvial meadows, and the largest reed bed in the county, providing habitat for breeding birds. It is in the West St Leonards ward, stretching into the parish of Crowhurst. The final SSSI, Hastings Cliffs to Pett Beach, is within the Ore ward of Hastings, extending into the neighbouring Fairlight and Pett parishes. The site runs along the coast and is of both biological and geological interest. The cliffs hold many fossils and the site has many habitats, including ancient woodland and shingle beaches.
As with the rest of the British Isles and Southern England, Hastings experiences a maritime climate with cool summers and mild winters. In terms of the local climate, Hastings is on the eastern edge of what is, on average, the sunniest part of the UK, the stretch of coast from the Isle of Wight to the Hastings area. Hastings, tied with Eastbourne, recorded the highest duration of sunshine of any month anywhere in the United Kingdom – 384 hours – in 1911. Temperature extremes since 1960 at Hastings have ranged from 33.2 °C (91.8 °F) in July 2006, down to −9.8 °C (14.4 °F) in January 1987. The Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Cfb" (Marine West Coast Climate/Oceanic climate).
Some of the areas and suburbs of Hastings are Ore Valley, St Leonards, Silverhill, West St Leonards, and Hollington. Ore, Silverhill and Hollington were once villages that have since become part of the Hastings conurbation area during rapid growth. The original part St Leonards was bought by James Burton and laid out by his son, the architect Decimus Burton, in the early 19th century as a new town: a place of elegant houses designed for the well-off; it also included a central public garden, a hotel, an archery, assembly rooms and a church. Today's St Leonards has extended well beyond that original design, although the original town still exists within it.
The population of the town in 2001 was 85,029, by 2009 the estimated population was 86,900. Hastings suffers at a disadvantage insofar as growth is concerned because of its restricted situation, lying as it does with the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty to the north. Redevelopment of the area is partly hampered by the split administration of the combined Hastings and Bexhill economic region between Hastings and Rother district councils. There is little space for further large-scale housing and employment growth within the designated boundaries of Hastings, and development on the outskirts is resisted by Rother council whose administrative area surrounds Hastings. Rother has a policy of urban expansion in the area immediately north of Bexhill, but this requires infrastructure improvements by central Governments which have been under discussion for decades. This situation has now become the subject of parliamentary consideration.
|Mixed: White and Black Caribbean||320||0.38|
|Mixed: White and Black African||145||0.17|
|Mixed: White and Asian||361||0.42|
Ethnicity in 2001
Until the development of tourism, fishing was Hastings' major industry. The fishing fleet, based at the Stade, remains Europe's largest beach-launched fishing fleet and has recently won accreditation for its sustainable methods. The fleet has been based on the same beach, below the cliffs at Hastings, for at least 400, possibly 600, years. Its longevity is attributed to the prolific fishing ground of Rye Bay nearby. Hastings fishing vessels are registered at Rye, and thus bear the letters "RX" (Rye, SusseX).
There are now various industrial estates that lie around the town, mostly on the outskirts, which include engineering, catering, motoring and construction; however, most of the jobs within the Borough are concentrated on health, public services, retail and education. 85% of the firms (in 2005) employed fewer than 10 people; as a consequence the unemployment rate was 3.3% (cf. East Sussex 1.7%). However, qualification levels are similar to the national average: 8.2% of the working-age population have no qualifications while 28% hold degree-level qualifications or higher, compared with 11% and 31% respectively across England.
Hastings main shopping centre is Priory Meadow Shopping Centre, which was built on the site of the old Central Recreation Ground which played host to some Sussex CCC first-class fixtures, and cricketing royalty such as Dr. W. G. Grace and Sir Don Bradman. The centre houses 56 stores and covers around 420,000 ft2. Further retail areas in the town centre include Queens Road, Wellington Place and Robertson Street.
There are plans to expand the retail area in Hastings, which includes expanding Priory Meadow and creating more retail space as part of the Priory Quarter development. Priory was intended to have a second floor added to part of the retail area, which has not happened yet and so far only office space has been created as part of the Priory Quarter.
In 2002 the Hastings and Bexhill task force, set up by the South East England Development Agency, was founded to regenerate the local economy, a 10-year programme being set up to tackle the local reliance on public sector employment. The regeneration scheme saw the construction of the University Centre Hastings, (now known as the University of Brighton in Hastings) the new Sussex Coast College campus and construction of the Priory Quarter, which still remains unfinished but now houses Saga offices, bringing 800 new jobs to the area.
Hastings has an Army Cadet Force (ACF) detachment which is part of Sussex ACF. This detachment is based in the old Territorial Army Unit Building on Cinque Ports Way, and is affiliated to PWRR. Hastings also has a Royal Air Force Air Cadet Squadron, 304 (Hastings) Squadron of Sussex Wing RAFAC, based in the same building. The town also has a Sea Cadet squadron, T.S. Hastings. This sits adjacent to the Army and Air Cadet building on the seafront. The site features a climbing wall and other training facilities.
Throughout the year many annual events take place in Hastings, the largest of which being the May Day bank holiday weekend, which features a Jack-in-the-Green festival (revived since 1983), and the culmination of the Maydayrun—tens of thousands of motorcyclists having ridden the A21 to Hastings. The yearly carnival during Old Town Week takes place every August, which includes a week of events around Hastings Old Town, including a Seaboot race, bike race, street party and pram race. In September, there is a month-long arts festival 'Coastal Currents' and a Seafood and Wine Festival. During Hastings Week held each year around 14 October the Hastings Bonfire Society stages a traditional Sussex Bonfire which includes a torchlight procession through the streets, a beach bonfire and firework display. Hastings Pirate Day takes place in July every year. Hastings, as of November 2017, still holds the Guinness World Record for the most pirates in one place.
Other smaller events include the Hastings Beer and Music Festival, held every July in Alexandra Park, the Hastings Musical Festival held every March in the White Rock Theatre and the Hastings International Chess Congress.
There are two theatres in the town, the White Rock Theatre and the Stables Theatre. The White Rock theatre is the venue of the yearly pantomime and throughout the year hosts comedy, dance and music acts. The Stables stages more local productions and acts as an arts exhibition centre. The Phoenix Arts Centre, based at Ark William Parker Academy also stages local productions as well as shows put on by the school.
There is a small four screen Odeon cinema in the town, located opposite the town hall; however, there are plans to build a new multiplex cinema as part of the Priory Quarter development in the town centre. The town has an independent cinema called the Electric Palace located in the Old Town and a restored cinema in St Leonards called the Kino Teatr.
There are three museums in Hastings; the Hastings Museum and Art Gallery, the Hastings Fishermen's Museum and the Shipwreck Museum. The former two mentioned are open for the whole year while the Shipwreck Museum is open only weekends during the winter, but daily for the rest of the year.
The Hastings Museum and Art gallery concentrates mostly on local history and contains exhibits on Grey Owl and John Logie Baird. It also features a Durbar Hall, donated by Lord Brassey; the hall contains displays focusing on the Indian subcontinent and the Brassey Family. The Fishermen's Museum, housed in the former fishermen's church, is dedicated to the fishing industry and maritime history of Hastings. The Shipwreck Museum displays artifacts from wrecks around the area.
The Jerwood Gallery located in the Stade area of Hastings Old Town is the home for the Jerwood Collection of 20th and 21st century art and a changing contemporary exhibition programme. The project was opposed by many locals who felt that a new art gallery would have been better located elsewhere in the town.
There are many parks and open spaces located throughout the town, one of the most popular and largest being Alexandra Park opened in 1882 by the Prince and Princess of Wales. The park contains gardens, open spaces, woods, a bandstand, tennis courts and a cafe. Other open spaces include White Rock Gardens, West Marina Gardens, St Leonards Gardens, Gensing Gardens, Markwick Gardens, Summerfields Woods, Linton Gardens, Hollington woods, Filsham Valley, Warrior Square, Castle Hill, St Helens Woods and Hastings Country Park.
Hastings Castle was built in 1070 by the Normans, four years after the Norman invasion. It is located on the West Hill, overlooking the town centre and is a Grade I listed building. Little remains of the castle apart from the arch left from the chapel, part of the walls and dungeons. The nearby St. Clements Caves are home to the Smugglers Adventure, which features interactive displays relating to the history of smuggling on the south coast of England.
Hastings Pier can be seen from any part of the seafront in the town. The pier was closed in 2006 following safety concerns from the council. In October 2010, a serious fire burned down most of the buildings on the pier and caused further damage to the structure. However, the pier reopened on 27 April 2016 after a £14.2m refurbishment.
Many church buildings throughout the town are Grade II listed including; Church in the Wood, Blacklands Parish Church, Ebenezer Particular Baptist Chapel, Fishermen's Museum and St Mary Magdalene's Church.
On the seafront at St Leonards is Marine Court, a 1938 block of flats in the Art Deco style that was originally called 'The Ship' due to its style being based on the ocean liner RMS Queen Mary. This block of flats can be seen up to 20 mi (32 km) away on a clear day, from Holywell, in the Meads area of Eastbourne.
An important former landmark was "the Memorial", a clock tower commemorating Albert the Prince Consort which stood for many years at the traffic junction at the town centre, but was demolished following an arson attack in the 1970s.
There are two major roads in Hastings: the A21 trunk road to London; and the A259 coastal road. Both are beset with traffic problems: although the London road, which has to contend with difficult terrain, has had several sections of widening over the past decades there are still many delays. Long-term plans for a much improved A259 east–west route (including a Hastings bypass) were abandoned in the 1990s. A new Hastings-Bexhill Link Road opened in April 2016 known as the A2690 with the hope of reducing traffic congestion along the A259 Bexhill Road. The new link road travels from Queensway in the North of Hastings and joins up to the A259 in Bexhill. Hastings is also linked to Battle via the A2100, the original London road.
The town is served by Stagecoach in Hastings buses on routes that serve the town, and also extend to Bexhill, Eastbourne and Dover as part of The Wave route. Stagecoach also run long distance buses up to Northiam, Hawkhurst, Royal Tunbridge Wells, Ashford and Canterbury.
National Express Coaches run service 023 to London.
Hastings has four rail links: two to London, one to Brighton and one to Ashford. Of the London lines, the shorter is the Hastings Line, the former South Eastern Railway (SER) route to Charing Cross via Battle and Tunbridge Wells, which opened in 1852; and the longer is the East Coastway Line, the former London, Brighton and South Coast Railway (LBSCR) route to Victoria via Bexhill, Eastbourne and Lewes. Trains to Brighton also use the East Coastway Line. The Marshlink Line runs via Rye to Ashford where a connection can be made with Eurostar services, and is unelectrified except for the Hastings-Ore segment.
Hastings is served by two rail companies: Southeastern and Southern. Southeastern services run along the Hastings Line, generally terminating at Hastings, with some peak services extending to Ore; the other lines are served by Southern, with services terminating at Ore or Ashford.
The town currently has four railway stations: from west to east they are West St Leonards station, St Leonards Warrior Square, Hastings, and Ore; this latter has been proposed to be renamed to Ore Valley. There is also one closed station and one proposed station in the area. West Marina station (on the LBSCR line) was very near West St Leonards (on the SER line) and was closed some years ago. A new station has been proposed at Glyne Gap in Bexhill, which would also serve residents from western Hastings.
The Saxon Shore Way, (a long distance footpath, 163 mi (262 km) in length from Gravesend, Kent traces the Kent and Sussex coast "as it was in Roman times" to Hastings. The National Cycle Network route NCR2 links Dover to St Austell along the south coast, and passes through Hastings.
Hastings had a network of trams from 1905 to 1929. The trams ran as far as Bexhill, and were worked by overhead electric wires, except for the stretch along the seafront from Bo-Peep to the Memorial, which was initially worked by the Dolter stud contact system. The Dolter system was replaced by petrol electric trams in 1914, but overhead electrification was extended to this section in 1921. Trolleybuses rather than trams were used in the section that included the very narrow High Street, and the entire tram network was replaced by the Hastings trolleybus system in 1928–1929.
Maidstone & District bought the Hastings Tramway Company in 1935, but the trolleybuses still carried the "Hastings Tramways" logo until shortly before they were replaced by diesel buses in 1959, following the failure of the "Save our trolleys" campaign.
Hastings has 18 primary schools, four secondary schools, one further education college and one higher education institution.
The University of Brighton in Hastings offers higher education courses in a range of subjects and currently attracts over 800 students. The university's Hastings campus doubled in size in 2012, with the addition of the new Priory Square building designed by Proctor and Matthews Architects. This is located in the town centre a short distance from the railway station.
Sussex Coast College, formerly called Hastings College, is the town's further education college; it is located at Station Plaza, next to the railway station.
The secondary schools in the town include Ark Helenswood Academy, Ark William Parker Academy, Hastings Academy and The St Leonards Academy. East Sussex County Council closed three mixed comprehensive schools: Filsham Valley, The Grove and Hillcrest, replacing them with two academy schools, The St Leonards Academy, and The Hastings Academy. The sponsors for the academies are University of Brighton (lead sponsor), British Telecom and East Sussex County Council itself. East Sussex County Council provisionally approved the closure of Hillcrest, The Grove and Filsham Valley. The academies were opened in September 2011.
The most important buildings from the late medieval period are the two churches in the Old Town, St Clement's (probably built after 1377) and All Saints (early 15th century). There is also a mosque, formerly "Mercatoria School" until purchased by the East Sussex Islamic Association. The former Ebenezer Particular Baptist Chapel in the Old Town dates from 1817 and is listed at Grade II. Christ Church, Blacklands (1876) has a complete decorative scheme of Mural, Stained Glass, Mosaic and Wrought Iron from the firm of Hardman's which gives it a ll* listing. When St. Andrew's was demolished in 1970 to make way for a supermarket, a fragment of the decorative scheme there, painted by Robert Noonan (also known as Robert Tressell, author of the Ragged Trousered Philanthropists) was rescued and features in the Hastings Museum. The Parish and title were added to Blacklands Church.
Every year the Hastings Half Marathon is held in the town. The 13.1 mi (21.1 km) race first took place in 1984 and attracts entrants from all over the country, taking runners on a route encircling the town, starting and finishing by the West Marina Gardens in St Leonards.
Hastings United is the town's most senior football team, playing in the Premier Division of the Isthmian League. It was founded in 1894 and plays its home games at The Pilot Field, which ground used to be home to two other senior clubs; St Leonards and the original Hastings United which folded in 1985. There are football clubs in Hastings that compete in the East Sussex League, such as Hollington United, St Leonards Social and Rock-a-Nore, playing at local parks and recreation grounds about the town. United attracted sports media headlines, when in 2012 they made it to the third round of the FA Cup for the first time in their history, being the lowest ranked team left in the contest before going out - losing 4-1 to Middlesbrough.
The Central Recreation Ground was one of England's oldest, most scenic and most famous cricket grounds. The first match was played there in 1864 and the last in 1989, after which the site was redeveloped as a shopping centre. It was particularly popular with touring Australian sides who played 18 matches there. Hastings Priory is the town's largest cricket club, having 4 teams playing competitive, as well as a large junior section. The club's home is at Horntye Park, though it also makes use of the facilities at Ark William Parker Academy.
William Parker sees clubs using the school as their base, such as ( ( Hastings & Bexhill Rugby Football Club ) ), Hastings Athletic Club and Hastings Priory Cricket Club 3rd and 4th teams. Other local teams include Cinque Ports Rugby Club which plays at Grove School, and South Saxons Hockey Club which plays on the astroturf pitch at Horntye Park.
Hastings Conquerors is the town's only American Football Club. The club was founded in March 2013 by local resident Chris Chillingworth and currently trains at William Parker Sports College. The club made history in June 2013 when it became the UK's first Co-Operative run not-for-profit American Football club.
There are many bowling greens in the parks and gardens located about the town; the Hastings Open Bowls Tournament has been held annually in June since 1911 and attracts many entrants country-wide.
Since 1920 Hastings has hosted the Hastings International Chess Congress. A testament to its importance is that every World Champion before Garry Kasparov except Bobby Fischer played at Hastings including Emanuel Lasker (1895), José Raúl Capablanca (1919, 1929/30, 1930/1 and 1934/5), Alexander Alekhine (1922, 1925/6, 1933/4 and 1936/7), Max Euwe (1923/4, 1930/1, 1931/2, 1934/5, 1945/6 and 1949/50), Mikhail Botvinnik (1934/5, 1961/2 and 1966/7), Vasily Smyslov (1954/5, 1962/3 and 1968/9), Mikhail Tal (1963/4), Tigran Petrosian (1977/8), Boris Spassky (1965/6), and Anatoly Karpov (1971/2).
Hastings & St Leonards/Hastings Downs Golf Club (now defunct) was founded in 1893. The club disappeared in the 1950s.
John Logie Baird lived in Hastings in the 1920s where he carried out experiments that led to the transmission of the first television image. Robert Tressell wrote The Ragged-Trousered Philanthropists in Hastings between 1906 and 1910. Many notable figures were born, raised, or lived in Hastings, including computer scientist Alan Turing, poet Fiona Pitt-Kethley, actress Gwen Watford, comedian Jo Brand and singer Suggs. Gareth Barry, who holds the record number of appearances in the Premier League, was born in Hastings. The author who worked as Grey Owl was born In Hastings and lived here for several years. The Venerable Luke Irvine-Capel, Archdeacon of Chichester, was the Priest-in-Charge of Hastings St Clement’s and All Saints’ from 2017-2019.  Biddy the Tubman was a noted entertainer between 1939-1964 and gave visitors much entertainment as he paddled a half-barrel tub in the sea.
Hastings is twinned with:
Alcee Lamar Hastings (born September 5, 1936) is the U.S. Representative for Florida's 20th congressional district. The district includes most of the majority-black precincts in and around Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. A Democrat, Hastings served as a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida until his impeachment and removal.Following Senator Bill Nelson's departure from office in January 2019, Hastings became the dean (or longest-serving member) of Florida's congressional delegation.
He has been recently diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.Battle of Hastings
The Battle of Hastings was fought on 14 October 1066 between the Norman-French army of William, the Duke of Normandy, and an English army under the Anglo-Saxon King Harold Godwinson, beginning the Norman conquest of England. It took place approximately 7 miles (11 kilometres) northwest of Hastings, close to the present-day town of Battle, East Sussex, and was a decisive Norman victory.
The background to the battle was the death of the childless King Edward the Confessor in January 1066, which set up a succession struggle between several claimants to his throne. Harold was crowned king shortly after Edward's death, but faced invasions by William, his own brother Tostig, and the Norwegian King Harald Hardrada (Harold III of Norway). Hardrada and Tostig defeated a hastily gathered army of Englishmen at the Battle of Fulford on 20 September 1066, and were in turn defeated by Harold at the Battle of Stamford Bridge five days later. The deaths of Tostig and Hardrada at Stamford Bridge left William as Harold's only serious opponent. While Harold and his forces were recovering, William landed his invasion forces in the south of England at Pevensey on 28 September 1066 and established a beachhead for his conquest of the kingdom. Harold was forced to march south swiftly, gathering forces as he went.
The exact numbers present at the battle are unknown; modern estimates are around 10,000 for William and about 7,000 for Harold. The composition of the forces is clearer; the English army was composed almost entirely of infantry and had few archers, whereas only about half of the invading force was infantry, the rest split equally between cavalry and archers. Harold appears to have tried to surprise William, but scouts found his army and reported its arrival to William, who marched from Hastings to the battlefield to confront Harold. The battle lasted from about 9 am to dusk. Early efforts of the invaders to break the English battle lines had little effect; therefore, the Normans adopted the tactic of pretending to flee in panic and then turning on their pursuers. Harold's death, probably near the end of the battle, led to the retreat and defeat of most of his army. After further marching and some skirmishes, William was crowned as king on Christmas Day 1066.
There continued to be rebellions and resistance to William's rule, but Hastings effectively marked the culmination of William's conquest of England. Casualty figures are hard to come by, but some historians estimate that 2,000 invaders died along with about twice that number of Englishmen. William founded a monastery at the site of the battle, the high altar of the abbey church supposedly placed at the spot where Harold died.Donner Party
The Donner Party (sometimes called the Donner–Reed Party) was a group of American pioneers who migrated to California in a wagon train from the Midwest. Delayed by a series of mishaps, they spent the winter of 1846–47 snowbound in the Sierra Nevada. Some of the migrants resorted to cannibalism to survive, eating the bodies of those who had succumbed to starvation and sickness.
The Donner Party departed Missouri on the Oregon Trail in the spring of 1846, behind many other pioneer families who were attempting to make the same overland trip. The journey west usually took between four and six months, but the Donner Party was slowed after electing to follow a new route called the Hastings Cutoff, which bypassed established trails and instead crossed Utah's Wasatch Mountains and the Great Salt Lake Desert. The desolate and rugged terrain, and the difficulties they later encountered while traveling along the Humboldt River in present-day Nevada, resulted in the loss of many cattle and wagons, and divisions soon formed within the group.
By early November, the migrants had reached the Sierra Nevada but became trapped by an early, heavy snowfall near Truckee Lake (now Donner Lake) high in the mountains. Their food supplies ran dangerously low, and in mid-December some of the group set out on foot to obtain help. Rescuers from California attempted to reach the migrants, but the first relief party did not arrive until the middle of February 1847, almost four months after the wagon train became trapped. Of the 87 members of the party, only 48 survived the ordeal. Historians have described the episode as one of the most spectacular tragedies in California history, and in the entire record of American westward migration.Earl of Huntingdon
Earl of Huntingdon is a title which has been created several times in the Peerage of England. The medieval title (1065 creation) was associated with the ruling house of Scotland (David of Scotland).
The seventh and most recent creation dates to 1529. In this lineage, the current holder of the title is William Hastings-Bass, 17th Earl of Huntingdon (b. 1948).
In English folklore, the title has been associated with Robin Hood.East Sussex
East Sussex is a county in South East England. It is bordered by the counties of Kent to the north and east and West Sussex to the west, and to the south by the English Channel.Evelyn Waugh
Arthur Evelyn St. John Waugh (; 28 October 1903 – 10 April 1966) was an English writer of novels, biographies, and travel books, and he was also a prolific journalist and book reviewer. His most famous works include the early satires Decline and Fall (1928) and A Handful of Dust (1934), the novel Brideshead Revisited (1945), and the Second World War trilogy Sword of Honour (1952–61). He is recognised as one of the great prose stylists of the English language in the 20th century.Waugh was the son of a publisher, educated at Lancing College and then at Hertford College, Oxford. He worked briefly as a schoolmaster before he became a full-time writer. As a young man, he acquired many fashionable and aristocratic friends and developed a taste for country house society. He travelled extensively in the 1930s, often as a special newspaper correspondent; he reported from Abyssinia at the time of the 1935 Italian invasion. He served in the British armed forces throughout the Second World War, first in the Royal Marines and then in the Royal Horse Guards. He was a perceptive writer who used the experiences and the wide range of people whom he encountered in his works of fiction, generally to humorous effect. Waugh's detachment was such that he fictionalised his own mental breakdown which occurred in the early 1950s.
Waugh converted to Catholicism in 1930 after his first marriage failed. His traditionalist stance led him to strongly oppose all attempts to reform the Church, and the changes by the Second Vatican Council (1962–65) greatly disturbed his sensibilities, especially the introduction of the vernacular Mass. That blow to his religious traditionalism, his dislike for the welfare state culture of the postwar world, and the decline of his health all darkened his final years, but he continued to write. He displayed to the world a mask of indifference, but he was capable of great kindness to those whom he considered his friends. After his death in 1966 he acquired a following of new readers through the film and television versions of his works, such as the television serial Brideshead Revisited (1981).Francis Rawdon-Hastings, 1st Marquess of Hastings
Francis Edward Rawdon-Hastings, 1st Marquess of Hastings, KG, PC (9 December 1754 – 28 November 1826), styled The Honourable Francis Rawdon from birth until 1762, as The Lord Rawdon between 1762 and 1783, and known as The Earl of Moira between 1793 and 1816, was an Anglo-Irish British politician and military officer who served as Governor-General of India from 1813 to 1823. He had also served with British forces for years during the American Revolutionary War and in 1794 during the French Revolutionary Wars. He took the additional surname "Hastings" in 1790 in compliance with the will of his maternal uncle, Francis Hastings, 10th Earl of Huntingdon.Hastings, Minnesota
Hastings is a city in Dakota and Washington counties, in the U.S. state of Minnesota, near the confluence of the Mississippi, Vermillion, and St. Croix Rivers. Its population was 22,172 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Dakota County, which contains most of it as well as a small part extending into Washington County. It is named for the first elected governor of the state of Minnesota, Henry Hastings Sibley.The advantages of Hastings's location that led to its original growth are that it is well-drained, provides a good riverboat port, and is close to a hydropower resource at the falls of the Vermillion River. Other sites closer to the river confluence are either too swampy (Dakota County) or too hilly (Washington County and Pierce County, Wisconsin).
U.S. Highway 61 and Minnesota State Highways 55 and 316 are three of the main routes in Hastings.Hastings, Nebraska
Hastings is a city and county seat of Adams County, Nebraska, United States. The population was 24,907 at the 2010 census. It is known as the town where Kool-Aid was invented by Edwin Perkins in 1927, and celebrates that event with the Kool-Aid Days festival every August. Hastings is also known for Fisher Fountain, and during World War II operated the largest Naval Ammunition Depot in the United States. It was chosen because of its centralized location from North to South and East and West in the country. This made it quicker to send ammunition by train to wherever needed.Hastings, New Zealand
Hastings (; Māori: Heretaunga) is a New Zealand city and is one of the two major urban areas in Hawke's Bay, on the east coast of the North Island of New Zealand. The population of Hastings is 70,600 (as of June 2018), with 45,000 living in the contiguous city and Flaxmere, 13,950 in Havelock North, 2,210 in Clive, and the remainder in the peri-urban area around the city. Hastings is about 18 kilometres inland of the coastal city of Napier. These two neighbouring cities are often called "The Bay Cities" or "The Twin Cities". The combined population of the Napier-Hastings Urban Area is 134,500 people, which makes it the sixth-largest urban area in New Zealand, closely following Tauranga (141,600).
The city is the administrative centre of the Hastings District. The city of Hastings and its outlying suburbs of Flaxmere and Havelock North are the principal settlements in the Hastings District. These main centres are surrounded by thirty-eight rural settlements, including Clive and Haumoana. Hastings District covers an area of 5,229 square kilometres (2,019 sq mi) and has 1.6 % of the population of New Zealand, ranking it fourteenth in size out of the seventy-four territorial authorities. Since the merger of the surrounding and satellite settlements, Hastings has grown to become one of the largest urban areas in Hawke's Bay.
Hastings District is a food production region. The fertile Heretaunga Plains surrounding the city produce stone fruits, pome fruit, kiwifruit and vegetables, and the area is one of New Zealand's major red wine producers. Associated business include food processing, agricultural services, rural finance and freight. Hastings is the major service centre for the surrounding inland pastoral communities and tourism.Hastings-on-Hudson, New York
Hastings-on-Hudson is a village and inner suburb of New York City located in the southwest part of the town of Greenburgh in the state of New York, United States. It is located on the eastern bank of the Hudson River, about 20 miles (32 km) north of midtown Manhattan in New York City, and is served by a stop on the Metro-North Hudson Line. To the north of Hastings-on-Hudson is the village of Dobbs Ferry, to the south the city of Yonkers, and to the east unincorporated parts of Greenburgh. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 7,849. It lies on U.S. Route 9, "Broadway" in Hastings-on-Hudson.Hastings River
Hastings River (Birpai: Doongang), an open and trained intermediate wave dominated barrier estuary, is located in the Northern Tablelands and Mid North Coast districts of New South Wales, Australia.Hastings United F.C.
Hastings United Football Club, previously known as Hastings Town, is a semi-professional football club based in Hastings, East Sussex. They currently play in the Isthmian League South East Division and have played their home games at The Pilot Field since 1985, after the demise of the previous Hastings United, whose identity they took on following a name change in 2002.
The club was founded in 1893 as Rock-a-Nore and joined the East Sussex Football League in 1904. They went on to become founder members of the Sussex County Football League in 1920, changing their name to Hastings & St Leonards in 1921, before leaving to join the Southern Amateur Football League in 1927. They had a brief stay in the Corinthian League before becoming founder members of Division Two of the Sussex County League in 1952. They changed their name to Hastings Town in 1976 and would go on to take Hastings United's place in the Southern Football League in 1985. They became Hastings United in 2002 and would go on to join the Isthmian League in 2004, where they have remained since.
The clubs traditional colours are claret and blue, though for the 2017-18 season their home kit is white with claret and blue trim. Their most successful period was in the 1930s where they won Division One of the Southern Amateur League on four occasions, plus the Sussex Senior Challenge Cup twice. The club also saw success in the 1990s winning the Sussex Senior Cup twice, the Southern League Cup once and the Southern League Southern Division in 1991-92. Their best performance in the FA Cup saw them reach the third round in the 2012-13 season.Max Hastings
Sir Max Hugh Macdonald Hastings (; born 28 December 1945) is an English journalist, who has worked as a foreign correspondent for the BBC, editor-in-chief of The Daily Telegraph, and editor of the Evening Standard. He is also the author of numerous books, chiefly on defence matters, which have won several major awards.Napier, New Zealand
Napier ( NAY-pi-ər; Māori: Ahuriri) is a New Zealand city with a seaport, located in Hawke's Bay on the eastern coast of the North Island. The population of Napier is about 63,900 as of the June 2018. About 18 kilometres (11 mi) south of Napier is the inland city of Hastings. These two neighbouring cities are often called "The Bay Cities" or "The Twin Cities" of New Zealand. The total population of the Napier-Hastings Urban Area is 134,500 people, which makes it the sixth-largest urban area in New Zealand, closely followed by Dunedin (122,000), and trailing Tauranga (141,600).
Napier is about 320 kilometres (200 mi) northeast of the capital city of Wellington. Napier (63,900) has a smaller population than its neighbouring city of Hastings (70,600) but is seen as the main centre due to it being closer in distance to both the seaport and the main airport that service Hawke's Bay, and Hastings' population figure includes 13,000 people living in Havelock North, which is often considered a town in its own right. The City of Napier has a land area of 106 square kilometres (41 sq mi) and a population density of 540.0 per square kilometre.
Napier is the nexus of the largest wool centre in the Southern Hemisphere, and it has the primary export seaport for northeastern New Zealand – which is the largest producer of apples, pears, and stone fruit in New Zealand. Napier has also become an important grape and wine production area, with the grapes grown around Hastings and Napier being sent through the Port of Napier for export. Large amounts of sheep's wool, frozen meat, wood pulp, and timber also pass through Napier annually for export. Smaller amounts of these materials are shipped via road and railway to the large metropolitan areas of New Zealand itself, such as Auckland, Wellington and Hamilton.
Napier is a popular tourist city, with a unique concentration of 1930s Art Deco architecture, built after much of the city was razed in the 1931 Hawke's Bay earthquake. It also has one of the most photographed tourist attractions in the country, a statue on Marine Parade called Pania of the Reef. Thousands of people flock to Napier every February for the Tremains Art Deco Weekend event, a celebration of its Art Deco heritage and history. Other notable tourist events attracting many outsiders to the region annually include F.A.W.C! Food and Wine Classic events, and the Mission Estate Concert at Mission Estate and Winery in the suburb of Taradale.Norman conquest of England
The Norman Conquest of England (in Britain, often called the Norman Conquest or the Conquest) was the 11th-century invasion and occupation of England by an army of Norman, Breton, Flemish, and French soldiers led by the Duke of Normandy, later styled William the Conqueror.
William's claim to the English throne derived from his familial relationship with the childless Anglo-Saxon king Edward the Confessor, who may have encouraged William's hopes for the throne. Edward died in January 1066 and was succeeded by his brother-in-law Harold Godwinson. The Norwegian king Harald Hardrada invaded northern England in September 1066 and was victorious at the Battle of Fulford, but Godwinson's army defeated and killed Hardrada at the Battle of Stamford Bridge on 25 September. Within days, William landed in southern England. Harold marched south to oppose him, leaving a significant portion of his army in the north. Harold's army confronted William's invaders on 14 October at the Battle of Hastings; William's force defeated Harold, who was killed in the engagement.
Although William's main rivals were gone, he still faced rebellions over the following years and was not secure on his throne until after 1072. The lands of the resisting English elite were confiscated; some of the elite fled into exile. To control his new kingdom, William granted lands to his followers and built castles commanding military strongpoints throughout the land with the Domesday Book, a manuscript record of the "Great Survey" of much of England and parts of Wales being completed by 1086. Other effects of the conquest included the court and government, the introduction of the Norman language as the language of the elites, and changes in the composition of the upper classes, as William enfeoffed lands to be held directly from the king. More gradual changes affected the agricultural classes and village life: the main change appears to have been the formal elimination of slavery, which may or may not have been linked to the invasion. There was little alteration in the structure of government, as the new Norman administrators took over many of the forms of Anglo-Saxon government.Reed Hastings
Wilmot Reed Hastings Jr. (born October 8, 1960) is an American entrepreneur and philanthropist. He is the co-founder, Chairman and CEO of Netflix and serves on the boards of Facebook and a number of non-profit organizations. A former member of the California State Board of Education, Hastings is an advocate for education reform through charter schools.University of California, Hastings College of the Law
The University of California, Hastings College of the Law (known less formally as Hastings) is a public law school located in the Civic Center area of San Francisco. Although affiliated with the University of California, Hastings is not directly governed by the Regents of the University of California. The one other UC campus that provides only postgraduate education is the University of California, San Francisco.
Founded in 1878 by Serranus Clinton Hastings, the first Chief Justice of California, it was the first law school of the University of California and was one of the first law schools established in the Western United States. Along with the CUNY School of Law, Hastings is one of the few prominent university-affiliated law schools in the United States that does not share a campus with the university's undergraduates or other postgraduate programs.Warren Hastings
Warren Hastings (6 December 1732 – 22 August 1818), an English statesman, was the first Governor of the Presidency of Fort William (Bengal), the head of the Supreme Council of Bengal, and thereby the first de facto Governor-General of India from 1774 to 1785. In 1787, he was accused of corruption and impeached, but after a long trial, he was acquitted in 1795. He was made a Privy Counsellor in 1814.
|Climate data for Hastings 1981–2010, extremes 1960–|
|Record high °C (°F)||15.0
|Average high °C (°F)||7.7
|Average low °C (°F)||3.1
|Record low °C (°F)||−9.8
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||75
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||72||90||127||196||230||232||247||235||168||128||85||61||1,871|
|Source #1: Royal Dutch Meteorological Institute|
|Source #2: Met Office |
Places adjacent to Hastings
Borough of Hastings
|Areas & Suburbs|
East Sussex Portal
|Boroughs or districts|
|Isle of Wight|