September –
October 2016

Hastings
Bexhill
Battle
Normandy
Inspired by the 950th
anniversary of the
Battle of Hastings
6th October 2016

Blog Post #12: The End is the Beginning

It seemed faintly eerie that my last blog post – written a little over a week ago – was entitled ‘The Halfway Mark’ – and that we’re now nearing the end. With this in mind, I was reluctant to call its immediate successor ‘The End’. Or ‘Almost The End’. They seem too abrupt. ‘The End is the Beginning’ aligns far more with the ROOT 1066 ethos.

Instead of focusing on our great Festival’s final week-and-a-bit, it is far more fitting to emphasise the raft of new opportunities that ROOT 1066 has brought. We feel that many events reflect this. Movement, freshly passed, is the epitome. It was tremendously heart-warming to experience the coming together of so much hard work, over so many months, from so many community groups. Formed of vulnerable young people and adults, the Stade-parade hosted an afternoon of music and entertainment – designed to amplify the voices of vulnerable people. It seems crass to highlight how moving Movement was. But it was.

And all of a sudden there’s only one programmed event left: 1066: Three Kings – before the Closing Event. Michael Punter’s play consists of a local cast. It promises to provide a week of contemporarily-presented history. Saturday has already sold out.

Following our Closing Event on 16 October, ROOT 1066 will be closed. But the past six weeks have highlighted Hastings’ increasing artistic excellence, and its success allows us to evolve in new directions. Cultural development is keynote to Hastings’ regeneration strategy. Following the Festival we move beyond.

Hastings & Rother are putting a bid together for Arts Council England’s Great Place Scheme. This funding strand prioritises art at the heart of areas. Hastings & Rother will centralise music as the bid’s art-form. We enjoy a great range of high-quality unique venues. Coupled with the number of local musicians – and the musicians that are attracted to our area – these become natural starting points for strategic development and investment.  See here for more information.

Watch this space.