This is where you can enjoy open air theatre in the Hastings area

People can enjoy socially distanced open air theatre performances in the grounds of a 16th century farm-house at Three Oaks, near Hastings.

Wednesday, 28th July 2021, 12:32 pm

Director and actor Stephen John is presenting a run of his play Why Will with evening performances on Thursday July 29, Friday 30, Saturday 31 and Thursday August 5, Friday 6, and Saturday 7. Gates open at 7pm and performance starts at 7.30pm.

There is also a matinee performance on Sunday August 1 – gates open at 2pm and show starts at 3pm.

Stephen John said: “The production Why Will is based on a cancelled show that was to have celebrated the 600th anniversary of Rye’s Mermaid Inn last year.

Open air theatre Why Will. Picture by Peter Mould SUS-210728-121242001

“Performing outdoors at our venue, the 16th century Half House Farm, at Butchers Lane, in Three Oaks near Hastings this one-man show takes a walk through the 20 productions I have directed and acted in under the Bowler Crab banner.

“It presents speeches from our past works whilst postulating the importance of the Bard and raising the question “Why just perform Shakespeare?” “The piece is shaped with other short questions from fans and subscribers.

“After our opening weekend we had fantastic reviews from our audiences about the show; words such as “passionate” “insightful” “thrilling” and “unmissable” reassured me that opening our doors for the first time in almost two years was the right move. It has been such a pleasure performing, and I hope it will encourage others to get out and about safely to theatres and venues around Sussex”.

He added: “Restrictions have been lifted, but from launch, “Why Will” has always been planned as socially distanced; we aren’t socially distancing because we have to, we’re socially distancing because we want to. We want all our play-goers to feel safe and so a new auditorium layout will be used at Half House Farm.

Open air theatre at farmhouse near Hastings SUS-210728-121230001

“You will be booking a ticket for a circular space rather than the usual per person system. Hay bales will be provided in the circles but your own lawn furniture or picnic blankets are also welcomed. We are not running a bar, but audiences are encouraged to bring their own picnics and drinks.”

Tickets for all performances are available at the door to purchase before each show and walk-ins are most welcome. To purchase on line go to or by telephone 07801893115. Prices are: £12.50 per individual, £25.00 for circle of two, £45 for a circle of four.