Hastings Senior Men's Forum

WE began our 64th session on Tuesday with the traditional visit from the Mayor of Hastings, Cllr Maureen Charlesworth.

This was her third visit, as she is now in third term as Mayor, and on this occasion she chose to give us some autobiographical details. She told how she was born just before the last war, in Ilford, two miles from the Thames '“ an unfortunate location for the times, for, in 1944 the family house suffered a hit from a V2 rocket, resulting in her evacuation to Luton.

A sister was born a year or two later, and they were together at primary school. Here Mrs Charlesworth developed a great love for the countryside, and a keen interest in cricket, following her county side of Essex. She remembered the street parties of VE and VJ days, and recalled the great privilege of watching the Queen on a nine-inch TV set.

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More recent history involved her family's move to Hastings, her marriage, and her entry into the hotel business at the Yelton Hotel. Not surprisingly, having the Mayor with us was an opportunity for a number of questions about present-day Hastings, and the meeting ended with a hearty vote of thanks for our visitor.