Press Releases week beginning 25 September 2017
Stade Saturdays- Music Month concert featuring SKINNY LISTER
Saturday, 30 September, the Stade, Hastings 7.30pm
Skinny Lister is rapidly becoming the nation's foremost folk rock band so it's only natural that the band has come home to head up Hastings and Rother's Music Month. Skinny Lister has built on a strong instrumental foundation and a collection of well-wrought high paced original tunes to deliver a series of legendary high octane performances.
"Heptinstall may well be the lead singer, but every member performs with the same anarchic intensity, collectively commanding the audience" - the Independent
"Skinny Lister sound as if they've been swinging from the galleons singing holler 'em shanties about rebellion while three sheets to the wind for centuries. But this sextet is young, from south London, and have honed their bold-as-brass sound by getting innumerable festival tents jigging over the past few years. Often folk-punk bands struggle to capture that vaudevillian spirit on record, but Skinny Lister's second album packs enough punch to steamroll a saloon brawl." - The Guardian
Cllr Kim Forward, deputy leader of Hastings Borough Council and lead member for regeneration and culture said, "With a third of the band now living in Hastings, this promises to be the concert of the year and will blast Stade Saturdays to new heights. Skinny Lister is becoming part of our local wealth of talent as well as having a national profile; it's really exciting to see them playing here!"
Hastings Empty homes scheme
Have you got an empty home that could be brought back into use?
Hastings Borough Council is looking to reduce homelessness in the town by brining empty properties back into use.
Councillor Andy Batsford, the council's lead member for housing explained:- "We first published our Empty Homes Strategy in 2003, and there were over 2000 empty homes in the town. This figure has reduced to around 800 privately owned empty homes, which is still far too many when there are so many people in the borough who need good quality, affordable housing.
"Everyone deserves to have a roof over their head. Bringing empty properties back into use is by far the easiest way to reduce the homelessness numbers. Our schemes help property owners to make their properties available, but we will force the issue if, regrettably, that becomes necessary.
"We know from experience that many owners need to be encouraged to bring their empty homes back into use. If appropriate, the council has the power to be enforce owners to make their properties available for sale or rent.
"The council has worked with the YMCA DownsLink to lease empty homes for providing self-contained homes to young adults and families and we work with Optivo housing association to purchase and repair empty homes for social housing. Hastings Borough Council also works with Parity Trust (a not for profit bank) to provide interest relief on loans to home owners for bringing privately owned empty homes back into use.
"But as a last resort, Hastings Borough Council will take firm action, if necessary using our compulsory purchase powers. To date, we have taken possession of six empty homes that had been kept empty for a minimum of two years. These homes are now occupied, having been sold-on with an agreement with the new owner that the home will become occupied within a reasonable time.
"And over 100 owners have been notified that the first stage of the compulsorily purchase process has begun. The majority of these homes are now either occupied or being made ready for occupation or to be marketed for sale.
"We have consistently achieved our annual target to bring 70 homes back into use that were empty for over two years."
Empty Homes Week is 16-22 October 2017
The Big Sleep 2017
Hastings Borough Council councillors and officers of took part in The Big Sleep by sleeping rough in cardboard boxes to raise money for Seaview.
Councillor Peter Chowney, Leader of the council, said "The Big Sleep was enjoyable and fun, as well as worthwhile. The support Seaview provides to vulnerable homeless people and street sleepers is essential, and I'm very pleased the council is able to fund their outreach programme. But I was also pleased to see so many people helping them by spending the night in a cardboard box, drawing attention to the plight of rough sleepers and raising money through sponsorship."
He went on to say, "As sleeping out in a cardboard box goes, this was pretty luxurious, in a secure compound with soup and coffee to hand, not to mention acoustic music sessions. It was a warm, dry night too - I slept better than I usually do! But life for real rough sleepers isn't like this - it's tough and dangerous. So I was very glad we were all able to help Seaview to continue their excellent work in Hastings."
A council officer who took part commented that, "It was great to be able to take part in The Big Sleep on Friday, and to be able to contribute to the amazing total raised for Seaview to help fund their vital frontline services for people in need."
Another council officer said, "I am so grateful for the opportunity to be part of such a wonderful event. I have met people who truly care about the day to day difficulties of being homeless in Hastings. It has been a chance to actually do something to support a charity that has been working so hard to make a positive difference… but the best part is finding out that £23,000 has been raised by The Big Sleep!