Hastings is 'cooler than Brighton' according to the Daily Telegraph

Hastings has been praised as a visitor destination and place to live in the national press with Telegraph writer William Cook stating ‘Forget Brighton – the cool crowd are moving to this gritty alternative’.
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He goes on to say that ‘an explosion of new quirky shops, bars and cafes has re-energised Hastings. Maggie’s fish and chip shop at Rock-a-Nore Road comes in for praise, though he inaccurately describes the net huts and fisherman’s beach as a ‘shanty town’. The Fisherman’s Museum, Hastings Contemporary and miniature steam railway also get a mention.

Cook writes, in the Jan 3 edition: “It’s never been as fashionable at Brighton or as smart as Eastbourne. Some parts of the town have a distinct ‘Costa del Dole’ vibe, with rough sleepers and street drinkers. Yet during the last decade or so, something marvellous has happened. Hastings has attracted an arty crowd. These hipsters, some local, some incomers, have re-energised the town, turning tired old retail spaces into quirky shops, bars and cafes.

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"Now Brighton has become gentrified, the folk who made it hip are migrating east.”

Hastings has been featured in the Daily TelegraphHastings has been featured in the Daily Telegraph
Hastings has been featured in the Daily Telegraph

Cook theorises that Hastings has taken off due to the gradual demise of the daily commute and people working from home. He also heaps praise on St Leonards mentioning the ‘delightfully eccentric’ shops of Kings Road and Norman Road and describing the Kino Teatr as a ‘vibrant arts centre’. He dines at Boatyard, in Heist, on Maldon Rock oysters and halibut with leek and seafood cream.

Cook notes: Hastings does have some bleak bits but you never have to wander far to find something interesting or attractive’. He describes the Old Town as ‘an architectural marvel’, enjoys a pint of Battle Brewery beer in the Crown and finds George Street to be a ‘lively thoroughfare’.

He comments: ‘Hastings isn’t all hip and arty-farty – there’s still a smattering of kiss-me-quick gift shops, a crazy golf course and a couple of amusement arcades.”

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He finishes his trip by dining at The Royal in St Leonards, where he praised owner James Hickson, for his food. Hickson comments: “St Leonards has really moved on a lot. There is more and more happening here.”