Showing posts from February, 2012

Nabucco at the White Rock, Hastings - Loved it!

Just a quick note about a bit of local culture.... at the weekend we went to see Nabucco at the White Rock Theatre, put on by Opera South East.  Heaven knows, I have been to enough operas, and in my experience, they often have a couple of dramatic moments and a few big songs punctuated by longeurs.... in this case, I loved every minute of it, and so did the Philosopher.  Nabucco only has one big song - the chorus of the Hebrew slaves, and a ridiculous plot, but it made no difference to our enjoyment. I don't know what it was - a smaller and more intimate theatre than we were used to in the big city? A slightly less stuffy atmosphere? Or maybe the performance was just plain good.  It was set in WW2 Holocaust Europe rather than ancient Babylon, which worked very well.  Staging, minimalist, but very effective.  Orchestra - excellent.

The guy that played Zaccaria, the high priest had a fabulously sonorous bass voice and very impressive dramatic impact - I read in the programme that he…

Those funny lamp posts on the Stade open space...

Does anyone else find those big wooden lamp posts on the Stade open space really unsympathetic?
     The Philosopher and I were having coffee in the Eat cafe on the Stade this morning - a blustery grey day.  I am sure that space looks great in the summer when there are lots of happy people plus a few craft stalls and a bit of morris dancing, but now it just looks...bleak.  Although the dark wood seats and the lamps are no doubt full of artistic merit, resonances of the net huts etc., the posts make us think of search lights around a concentration camp, and the seats look like large wooden wheelie bins.  How about a few flower beds or a grassy bank between the edge of the concrete and the miniature railway track?

The Philosopher said I needed to make this blog posting more positive.  Maybe I am in a worse mood because I am on a diet.  Progress around Hastings and St Leonard's should be measured by stops for food and drink - Jempsons doughnuts, cakes from the Post Office Tearooms, e…

Half-term blues....

Now we have moved to the seaside, our grand-daughter wants to come down from Brum and stay.... all very well in the summer, but possibly not so great in the February half-term.
     In fact, Hastings and St Leonard's are quite badly off when it comes to play facilities, especially near the
sea front.  We went down to the Old Town Amusement Park - most of the rides were closed, and then we froze about on the beach for a bit, collecting magic stones. 

We know of only one local indoor play centre - Clambers.  When we went, it was totally heaving, and so noisy that I'm surprised the staff don't have to wear ear defenders.  For those who don't have to look after kids, these play centres are warehouse places with lots of play equipment in a big cage, full of unbelievable screaming, with a pounding rock soundtrack and frequent public address announcements in the background to add to the pleasure.  Jaded mums crowd round plastic tables with watery cups of tea.  The Clambers …

Saving Hastings Pier - is the project dead in the water?

 ‘Everyone Loves the Pier’ proclaim the few faded, dog-eared notices left around the town.Maybe, but love won’t last without communication or any evidence of positive action.
     As a newcomer to Hastings, I can’t understand how the town is willing to put up with such a terrible, depressing eyesore of burnt out wreckage dominating the sea-front.

     To me, a seaside resort needs a pier, and I was initially delighted with the apparent enthusiasm and energy of the HPWRT, and with the news about the initial grant of lottery money.We visited the Pier shop many times, and donated goods and money to help the cause.
     I was surprised to read that the Council only issued a Compulsory Purchase Order for the Pier just before Christmas, when the Lottery money had been awarded back in August.How did anyone expect the Lottery money to be used if ownership had not been sorted out?
     Now, however, the campaign to fundraise and save the Pier now seems to be totally dormant.
     The Pier shop has …

Snowy Hastings

Snow, snow, snow.... Grey leaden sky looks set for more, too.  Best sights on our outing today - a 4 x 4 forging up Harold Road pulling two young girls, shrieking with delight, on a sledge behind it.  Looked great fun but none too safe.  As were not the next lot - a sledge, again loaded with kids, being pulled by two dogs down the Old London Road. 
     Then there were the young men making the snow people, complete with dog, bone and bowl, outside the  Italian Way.  Their sign said Poor and Hungry - we put some money in their bucket. From the West Hill, the East Hill looked like a Breughel painting - little dot people sledging in the snow.  The West Hill Cafe was like a steamy Alpine ski lodge.  How people love the snow - everyone talking to everyone else - dogs rushing round like mad things....

Feel free to comment!

Hastings Battleaxe welcomes comments from readers. I try to reply to every one. If I don't reply, the technology has let me down!