Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper

Jack the Ripper – all will be revealed at White Rock Theatre next month

Preview Corner: What’s hot in November

We get lots of information here in the HOT office about things that are coming to the area to delight and entertain us. You’ll often find details in our listings section, although there’s always room for more. But each month we’re also hoping to highlight some of the forthcoming attractions for the following four weeks, with our man in the Man-at-C&A blazer, paisley cravat and grey flannel trousers, Toby Sargent, casting a rheumy eye over a handful of the things that have caught his eye.

Lots to enjoy in November as we prepare for Christmas, and what better way to start the month than with the long-awaited solution to the mystery of Jack the Ripper. If you thought that the case of the Whitechapel murders of 1888 was one that will forever remain a mystery, think again. Trevor Marriott, a retired murder squad detective, has carried out a cold case review and unearthed new evidence that will ‘shatter the myth that has been Jack the Ripper.’ Sound too good to be true? Bring your cynical preconceptions to the White Rock Theatre on Wednesday 2 November to find out.

A festival of herrings

But if that hasn’t chilled your blood to the point of hypothermic collapse, then why not treat yourself to the tongue-tantalising taste of herrings at the fifth annual Hastings Herring Fair taking place at the Stade Open Space in Hastings over the weekend 5 and 6 November. The humble herring has been delighting diners since 3000 BC, apparently, and as everyone knows is very high in the long-chain Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA and a cracking source of vitamin D.


Celebrate the Herring on The Stade in November. It’s been delighting diners for 5,000 years

The idea of the fair is to “promote the local herring industry and showcase the versatile herring which is so abundant at this time of year” according to Cllr Kim Forward from Hastings BC.

There’ll be cookery classes in the Classroom on the Coast on the Saturday and, better yet, “special herring taster classes (to) teach you how to prepare herring – and you’ll be able to take some home to cook” promises the councillor.

But if the epicurean delights of the Clupea Harengus are not to your taste, then there will also be a beer festival run by the First in Last Out (FILO) public house and music and entertainment including shanty singers, bands, dance performances and a ceilidh until 4.30pm on Sunday 6 November to top it all off. Herrings, beer and the salty tang of the sea: what’s not to like?

Lest we forget

In more thoughtful, albeit no less life-enhancing spirit, the Kino-Teatr in Norman Road, St Leonards will be marking Remembrance Sunday with a free event, ‘Acts of Remembrance.’ This is described as ‘a special event including a screening of a heart-warming documentary, and a sing-song round the piano with World War II veterans.’

The film, Return of the Liberators, sounds great, covering ‘the antics, camaraderie, and acts of remembrance of an extraordinary veterans’ charity road trip to The Netherlands’ which came about thanks to the The London Taxi Benevolent Association for the War Disabled – a charity run by black cab drivers. This screening will be attended by some of the veterans who appear in the film, and there’s the promise of that sing-song round the piano afterwards of some old-fashioned songs and cockney favourites. It’s a free event, but do book in advance to avoid disappointment.

File written by Adobe Photoshop¨ 4.0

John Challis aka ‘Boycie’ has a few stories of life with the Trotters to tell

Did you enjoy Only Fools and Horses when it was on the telly back in the day? Of course you did. And you’ll remember the wonderful character played by the actor John Challis: ‘Boycie.’ Well the good news is that he’s bringing his one-man show to the White Rock Theatre on Tuesday 8 November.

Selfies with Boycie

The show – entitled Only Fools and Boycie – allows John Challis to reminisce about the show and his life before and after its success. He’ll also be doing a Q&A with the audience, signing autographs and posing for selfies. Should be a ‘very agreeable evening out, Marlene.’

The Hastings Storytelling Festival is also running between 7-13 November and promises a splendid selection of events including stories for adults and children, a storyteller in residence, an artist in residence and a schools programme. The festival has been running since 2011, with the estimable Sir Quentin Blake as its patron. All events for children are free, so check out the programme and see if you can get along. HOT will be reviewing it once it’s over, so look out for that too.

Sir Quentin Blake (pic credit - Pete Jones)

Sir Quentin Blake (pic credit – Pete Jones) – patron of the Storytelling Festival

Wednesday 9 November sees the iconoclastic – and highly entertaining – comedian\campaigner Mark Steel in the auditorium of St Mary in the Castle. He’s performing his award-winning ‘Red Shed’ show in the evening but, during the afternoon he’ll give a talk about comedy, art, politics and misbehaving in the St Mary in the Castle café-bar. Just 50 tickets are available for this special talk, with all proceeds from the ticket sales going to local charity Hastings & Rother Furniture Service (HFS) of which Mark is a patron. The café-bar will be open for refreshments during the afternoon, with tickets at just £10 from the venue or online.

HOT’s Zelly Restorick will be interviewing Mark Steel for a future article.

Gunn’s at the De la Warr

Moving westwards along the coast to Bexhill and the brilliant De La Warr Pavilion, I’d recommend Steve Gunn’s appearance on 13 November. Gunn is an outstanding guitarist and singer, operating at the soft-rock end of the spectrum albeit without the lyrical banalities and mundane world view so prevalent among other farmers in that well-ploughed field.

Don’t be put off by the press release announcing the gig, by the way – a masterpiece of the genre, from which the following, describing his latest album, is but one glorious example:

Steve Gunn: Great performer but dire press release from the record company

Steve Gunn

‘Lines on the road draw one’s attention to the lines comprising the landscape. Gunn’s music runs ahead and twists – like time, like the road itself. Guitar lines are highway lines are lines carved by the view out the window are the lines one waits in to get a quick meal on the way from one destination to another are lines one draws in the van to stay amused. It’s good to be out on the road and it’s good to be home, and each feeds into the other. This record sees lines run together and leap across one another.’

Pretentious old toot, or what? Like I said, though, Steve Gunn himself is excellent.


Finally, on 26 November classic film lovers are in for a treat at the Kino Teatr with a screening of Nosferatu, F.W. Murnau’s classic 1922 German Expressionist horror film starring Max Schreck as the vampire Count Orlock, with an original live soundtrack performed by My Octopus Mind, a Bristol-based trio. Tickets cost a tenner.

More next month. And don’t forget, if you know of something coming up in Hastings and its surrounding area that you’d like to see publicised in the HOT What’s On section, let us know and we’ll help you make it happen, free of charge.


Posted 15:01 Friday, Oct 28, 2016 In: Arts News

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