Press Releases week beginning 30 January 2017
Holocaust Memorial Service Success
A packed St Mary in the Castle saw a moving, thought-provoking Holocaust Memorial Day service on Saturday (28th January), the 17th the town has hosted.
The mayor of Hastings, Cllr Judy Rogers, council leader Peter Chowney and Amber Rudd MP were among the dignitaries who attended, witnessing some incredibly moving dancing from The Acromax Performance Group with members of Ark Helenswood Academy Hastings, and St Richard's College Bexhill. Amber Rudd and guest speaker opera singer Jonathan Veira both spoke on the service's theme, 'How can life go on?'
Organiser Brian Linke said :- "It was good to see so many people at the event on Saturday. I was particularly pleased with the number of youngsters prepared to be involved, which bodes well for the future.
"I am very grateful to Hastings Borough Council for their continued support for the event, and to everyone who spoke, performed, helped, and attended."
Leader of Hastings Borough Council, Cllr Peter Chowney, added :- "I was very pleased to be able to attend the Holocaust Memorial Day service on Saturday, which attracted a very large audience.
"I would like to thank the organiser, Brian Linke, who works so hard to put on such a thought-provoking event each year. This was Brian's seventh, and last, Holocaust Memorial Day service as he is now passing the baton on; he certainly went out on a high.
"I would also like to thank all of those who took part, particularly the students from St Richard's College, and the Acromax Performance Group, with members of Helenswood Academy, whose performances were incredibly moving."
Council set to review areas' music venues
Through projects such as Jerwood Gallery, Stade Open Space, Source BMX Park and the Pier, Hastings is visibly redefining itself as a creative, attractive and exciting place to live, work and invest.
Through culture-led regeneration over the past 10-15 years Hastings and Bexhill has seen impressive transformation and now Hastings Borough Council wishes to build and enhance the role of culture, arts and heritage for the long-term future.
Rapid change and growth of cultural activity in this area has identified gaps in knowledge of the cultural sector and infrastructure which Hastings Borough Council and the Hastings and Rother Cultural Leaders Group, a strategic group bringing together key cultural and public sector partners, wish to address. Funded by Arts Council England, this will include commissioning a comprehensive review of venues in Hastings and Bexhill, with a focus on venues for live performance.
"We are really proud of the fact that Hastings has been recognised as having 'culture at its heart' and we want to develop opportunities further to sustain this for the future. Working with Sound Diplomacy in partnership with the Music Venue Trust, we will identify and produce an assessment of live music opportunities in Hastings and Bexhill focusing on grassroots music venues" said Cllr Dawn Poole, the council's lead member for culture and leisure.
She added: "We are asking venues to get involved and tell us what they have to offer. We want to identify the current number of bars, pubs and restaurants with music, other performance opportunities including theatres and festivals, the number of rehearsal facilities and the amount of live performance opportunities staged per week. The number of jobs, audience demand and licensing conditions associated with current venues will also be assessed".
Shain Shapiro from Sound Diplomacy commented: "We're thrilled to be working with Music Venue Trust on this venue review for the council. There's an amazing amount of talent in the area and it's impressive that the council is so forward thinking in realising the cultural and economic opportunities that music can bring to the area. We look forward to getting stuck in."
Venues that show music and live performance and musicians are all encouraged to complete the survey. To find out more or to be sent the survey, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Home Office announces Hastings as part of Local Alcohol Action Area (LAAA)
On 27 January the Home Office launched a new phase of the programme to tackle alcohol-related crime and health harms and create a more diverse night-time economy.
Hastings has signed up as one of the 33 areas to receive support from the government to implement their plan which will see local agencies including licensing authorities, health bodies, and police coming together with businesses to address problems caused by alcohol in the local area.
"This second round of the LAAAs is excellent news for Hastings and we welcome the opportunity to work with partners to reduce alcohol-related harm and create safe and thriving night time economies. It will build on the good work carried out in the first round in 2014 which included the local 'Reduce the Strength Campaign' which aimed at restricting the supply of beer, lager and cider with an alcohol by volume of over 6.5%" said Cllr Warren Davies, Hastings Borough Council's lead member for environment.
Alcohol-related crime and disorder costs an estimated £11 billion per year in England and Wales, and the government wants to support local communities in reducing the scenes of drunkenness and violence that blight communities, particularly at night.
"The project will run until January 2019, and we look forward to working with mentors and partner agencies to problem solve, share best practice and tackle the issues we face here in Hastings" added Cllr Davies.
For more information about alcohol and health visit https://www.drinkaware.co.uk/
Hastings celebrates £800,000 funding to support local fishery
This week (30 January) Hastings saw the launch of the Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG)2 project at Jerwood Gallery.
Over 40 representatives from the fishing fleet, Hastings Borough Council, the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) and local business and voluntary organisations gathered to celebrate successfully securing £800,000 of European Maritime Fisheries Funding to help sustain and develop the ongoing future of the fleet and fishery businesses.
FLAG 2 is the second round of funding to help benefit local fisheries, coastal communities and the wider supply chain infrastructure. In round 1, Hastings FLAG used the funding to support over 20 projects, including Classroom on the Coast, improvements to the Winch Road, net folding machines for the fishing boats, improvements to the fish market, a new fish smokery and the coastal fishing trail.
"This is excellent news for our local fishing industry. As lead authority, we will work with FLAG partners to target funding in three areas; a sustainable fleet and supply chain, protection of the environment and identity of the place and we will focus on fewer, bigger projects" said Cllr Peter Chowney, the council's leader.
He added: "Our local fishing heritage goes way beyond the direct economics of fishing and has a huge impact on other areas including tourism. Congratulations must go to everyone involved in securing the FLAG2 bid and we look forward to the projects that emerge from this second round of funding".
The launch was an opportunity to show off some of the successful projects from FLAG1, enjoy some of the local catch expertly prepared by Paul Webbe and find out what FLAG2 projects will do.
FLAG board chair Steve Manwaring commented: "The FLAG programme in Hastings is recognised as a strong local partnership which is achieving real results. We are delighted that we have received further investment and together we can support our local industry, develop a Hastings brand and contribute to the promotion of the Hastings catch positively to new markets and consumers. Our launch was a great success in demonstrating what has been achieved, consulting on the programme and ensuring that our partners are engaged in the new FLAG2 initiative"