AG Hendy & Co, Hawk & Dove, and Little Mashers all made it into the top 50 - which was published on the newspaper’s website on Sunday (January 16).
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AG Hendy & Co, in High Street, Hastings Old Town, which houses a shop, small seafood restaurant, and school offering classes in fish cooking, food photography and travel writing, was praised for its old-fashioned frontage.
Alice Levine, radio and TV presenter and podcaster, said when she visits Hastings it always involves a pilgrimage to the store, run by food writer and photographer Alastair Hendy. “The changing window displays alone are worth a visit. Aesthetically pleasing, practical items is the brief. You’ll come out with half a dozen bistro glasses and a saucepan that is too beautiful to use, all wrapped up in brown paper and string,” she said.
Hawk & Dove, also in the High Street, was picked out for its “unique selection” of goods. Pearl Lowe, fashion and textiles designer, wrote: “Hawk & Dove is one of my favourite shops. I discovered it when we moved to the East Sussex coast last year. It has everything from handpicked vintage pieces, knitwear, slipdresses and tableware. It has such a unique selection. A real gem! The owner, Jade, has a great eye for truly special pieces.”
The article said St Leonards has a band of brilliant independent shopkeepers, but Little Mashers in Kings Road “takes the prize for childrenswear”. It added: “Aiming to fire up kids’ imaginations, its clothing-customisation kits are particularly entertaining, and the in-store craft hub — chock-full of beads, stickers, paints and paper — will make even the sulkiest Saturday afternoons a bit brighter.”