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Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright March 2010, Oast House Archive; licensed for re-use under a Creative Commons Licence.
Images also under a similar Creative Commons Licence.

Annual Events

Nigel Chadwick - image pageExternal link

May Day Run

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May Day Run by Oast House Archive
The May Day Run started in the 1960s, and sees thousands of motorcycles travel a 55-mile route from Farnborough, Kent to Hastings, East Sussex, on the May Day bank holiday Monday. Up to 20,000 motorcycles descend on Hastings sea front road and car park.

TQ8209 : Motorbikes at Hastings May Day Run 2009 by Oast House Archive

Jack in the green festival

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Jack in the Green Festival by N Chadwick
This traditional Morris-dancing festival in Hastings attracts groups from all over the country. Taking place over the May Bank Holiday weekend, it culminates in a procession and a ceremony called Slaying of the Jack on the last day. The origins of the festival are linked to that of the May Pole. In the 16th and 17th centuries people in England would make garlands of flowers and leaves for the May Day celebrations. The tradition developed until people bedecked themselves in foliage. Chimney boys often covered themselves in grass and were nicknamed "Jack in the Green". The festival declined and disappeared during the 19th century. This festival has been held in Hastings since, its revival in 1983. LinkExternal link

TQ8209 : Bogeys lead the Jack, High St ,Old Town by N Chadwick

Beer and music festival

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Beer and Music Festival by Oast House Archive
The Hastings Beer and Music Festival is held in Alexandra Park over two days during June or July.

TQ8110 : Beer & Music Festival tents by Oast House Archive

Hastings Half Marathon

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Hastings Half Marathon by Oast House Archive
First ran in 1984, an annual half marathon held in March, over 5000 people take part.

The race starts and ends at Sea Road, St Leonards, and goes clockwise around St Leonards, Hastings and surrounding suburbs, up steep hills to The Ridge and down to a long flat finish along the A259 coastal road.

LinkExternal link

TQ7908 : Hastings Half Marathon 2012 by Oast House Archive

Old Town Carnival

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Old Town Carnival by Oast House Archive
Held in Hastings Old Town in late July or in August, the Carnival week lasts for 9 days with a weekend finale of a parade on Saturday starting at the Rock-A-Nore Road, a fancy dress pram race on the same evening.

Other events include Hastings strongest man and woman competition, best dressed shop window, various exhibitions and guided tours, live music, to name but a few things.

Official website LinkExternal link

TQ8209 : Float at Old Town Carnival 2010 by Oast House Archive

Bonfire parade

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Bonfire Parade by Oast House Archive
Organised by the Hastings Borough Bonfire Society LinkExternal link Hastings Bonfire is an annual event which takes place in mid-October with a procession along the A259 coastal road through Hastings, culminating in a large bonfire on the beach at around 9pm.

TQ8109 : Bonfire on Pelham Beach by Oast House Archive

Pirate Day

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Pirate day by Oast House Archive
An annual event ran since 2009, thousands of people come to Hastings dressed as pirates.

In 2010 and 2012 Hastings held the Guinness World Record for the "Largest Gathering of Pirates", where over 14,000 people (2012) dressed as pirates gathered on Pelham Beach.

Official website LinkExternal link

TQ8209 : Largest Gathering of Pirates, Hastings Pirate Day by Oast House Archive


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