Heist, a new food and drink market in St Leonards, attracted lots of attention when it opened its doors in August. Based in the old Midland Bank in Norman Road, it is home to a variety of outlets offering authentic street food and drinks under one roof - and is billed as “a one-stop foodie destination”.
The same month, a Hastings shop opened up an indoor shooting range for customers. Outdoorsman Supplies Ltd, in Robertson Street, had always wanted to set up a shooting range since moving to larger premises in town.
In October, a new cheese shop opened in Hastings town centre. Cheese-on-Sea started off three months before that selling cheeses from a table at a street market outside Tommy’s Pizzeria in Norman Road, St Leonards. Owners James and Ruth McSmart used the money they made to open a shop near Hastings Library in Claremont, and were blown away by how popular it became in only a week.
A plant-based takeaway opened in St Leonards, and soon got a good following from locals. Roots, a green-painted shop in the trendy Kings Road, is run by Bill Brewin.
Meanwhile, in Bexhill, Rachel Hoath opened her fused glass shop - Rachel’s Glass Store. She joined forces with two neighbouring shops on The Colonnade promenade - Gallery Sussex, run by painter Julian Sutherland-Beatson, and Starlings-on-Sea, run by Charlotte Arundell, who sells hand-made women’s accessories. Together they hope to make the area a hub for creative industries in the town. In November, a new bar opened up in Hastings town centre. South Star, in Robertson Street, plans to offer a wide array of live entertainment - including a comedy club.
The venue - owned by Simon Wentworth, Anthony Boswell and Matt Blaker - has helped provide employment for young people in the area by making use of the Government’s Kickstart scheme. Other businesses are due to be opened soon - including a creative hub for artists at a former ambulance station in Beeching Road, Bexhill. Also a design-your-own-doughnut cafe in Robertson Street, Hastings.