Hastings – And the Battle to keep the kids happy!

As a family, we love to explore the UK and are often looking for new places to visit. There are so many places to explore with such a wide variety of countryside and cultural delights.

I decided to put it to the public vote every week on Instagram where we would visit, using the hashtag #wheretonowthen (I’m Cornish, it makes sense down there ) and for the first vote, we decided on Hastings vs Eastbourne. Hastings (unlike in 1066) won!

Hastings and the battle to keep the kids happy pinterest pin

I am obsessed, obsessed with all things Interiors, design and creativity! I could sit on Pinterest for hours looking at beautifully curated homes and Instagram has given me the opportunity to peek inside equally obsessed interior enthusiasts like me!

But, I have another passion. I love to travel and explore the UK and further afield. Thing is, I am also hugely indecisive and very lastmintue.com which doesn’t bode well for getting the family out of the door on new adventures!

hastings bound
Putting the weekend trip to the vote!

The Travel Bug

I don’t want this to be a travel blog as such, my obsession with Interiors is far too strong! More of an overview of the places we visit with (hopefully) beautiful scenery, architecture and the omnipresent “how to keep the kids happy”. Because I am a Mum foremost! And Hastings did not disappoint.

map of old town in Hastings
Where are we now?

First stop, Battle

As soon as I told Mr B that Hastings was the favourite, you could see his face light up with glee! Next thing I know, he’s on Amazon, ordering Knight outfits for himself and the kids and it’s a whole different trip to the one I had planned!

We were going via Battle so we could re-enact the famous combat of 1066! An Abbey was built on the site of the original battle and the Benedictine Abbey still partially stands today.

We spent a few hours walking around the English Heritage site, getting stuck in the mud (and the kids losing their wellies) and had a picnic in the drizzle, overlooking the hills where the actual battle took place. A truly British day out!

Battle abbey
The entrance tower to the Battle Abbey
A Tutu Knight!
Is it Maid Marian?? Haha, no! It’s Mel!
old tudor house in battle
An old Tudor house in Battle

Off to Hastings

We made our exit through (as all parents will know) the dreaded gift shop and when my Son started having a complete meltdown because we wouldn’t let him have a lollipop the size of his head, we knew it was time to head to Hastings.

We parked down by the seafront and could already see there was plenty to do for all the family, including an Aquarium, Tate Gallery, Cliff lifts, fun fair and museums.

I left Mr B with the kids at the entrance of the Aquarium and hot-footed it away.

I wasn’t here to see fish, I wanted to see the Old Town, complete with ancient architecture, narrow alleyways and most importantly, the amazing vintage, antique and homeware shops. It did not disappoint!

Boaty McBoatface
The Grade II listed Net Shops which were originally used to keep equipment for the fishing fleet
New Apartments (which you can see at the top right of this picture) were built recently in keeping with the Old Net Shops
Hansel and Gretel’s house… sorry! Pulpit Gate on All Saint’s Street, Hastings
So many pretty Doorways
135 All Saint’s Street – you can stay in this House as it were back in the Tudor times – visit www.aghendy.com/house
Quaint little alleyways

Old Town

I headed into the heart of the Old Town and stumbled across All Saints Street. Here you can find beautiful timber-framed buildings, some dating back to 1450 and some of the oldest surviving homes in the Old Town.

I then carried on through the little alleyways until I came to High Street and what a delightful place it was! Full of bric-a-brac, antique, vintage and (my new favourite kind of shop) rummage shops, with cafes, restaurants, old pubs and clothing stores thrown in.

Some of these shops have probably been in the same families for generations and I had a wonderful conversation with an elderly owner who told me how surprised he was how business had picked up in recent years.

This was after he nearly hit me with an antique broom because I was taking photos of his fascinating shop, shouting “I’m fed up with people treating this store like a joke!”, and I had to explain to him, on the contrary Sir, I think your shop is amazing and want to share!

High Street Tea Rooms and Grocery Stores
A rummage shop
55p! Not going to get much tea in it though!
A beautiful little garden shop
A tea room and delicatessen selling local produce

One of my favourite stores had to be A G Hendy & Co Home Store Hastings, a unique hardware shop and kitchen in the Old Town. The building has a shop selling goods that are plastic free, eco-friendly, made to last and stand the test of time.

Beautifully unique and vintage, there are plenty of homewares for the kitchen, scullery and broom cupboard as well as furniture for the dining room, office and garden. 

There is also a seafood restaurant tucked away in the building, workshops where you can learn fish dishes, food writing and styling and a Tudor House which you can visit or hire

I was pleasantly surprised by Hastings and would love to visit it again one day with the family. 

Mel x

More on Travel…

A Fabulous Stay at the White House, North Norfolk

A Short Break at Pickwell Manor, Devon

Leave a comment

  1. Melanie Boyden
    07/06/2018 / 9:02 am

    Thank you Theresa! It was a really hot day so I only wore it for about 10 mins 🙂 x

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