Celebration and remembrance

Amber Rudd from house to home JPHO JPOH SUS-140723-064112001
Amber Rudd from house to home JPHO JPOH SUS-140723-064112001

Last weekend was one of the busiest in the Hastings and St Leonards calendars.

The end of Old Town Week was celebrated with our competition of floats from the area.

Some are ‘motorised’ and others on foot. Local towns’ beauty queens and princesses also joined is with their ‘courts’ competing for a ‘Court of the Day’ prize.

It’s always remarkable to see the enormous array of different costumes and ideas dreamt up and then delivered by local residents as part of the fun.

Some are supported by businesses, others are family groups with one idea that works for all ages. All are enjoying themselves

I had a close encounter with some convincing zombies on the Stade but personally was particularly impressed by the gentleman dressed as a World War One veteran pulling a small bus.

Over in St Leonards on Sunday I joined others celebrating the Garden Full of Cultural Delights event.

This is an Interfaith event designed to bring different faths and cultures together into one celebration in the stunning St Leonards gardens.

We had live music, performances from different nations and a selection of international food. And it was a huge success, demonstrating the cohesion of our community.

As we rightly celebrate our town’s continued regeneration and our residents’ community spirit, this week we are also commemorating the start of the War of 1914. It’s a sobering thought. So many died to protect their families and their way of life and we are fortunate that they did. The scale of horror and destruction was shocking. We can enjoy our festivals and wonderful cultural life, but let us also, never forget. See page 13 for the latest on Amber’s presentation of a petition to the Prime Minister on the Gaza conflict received from Hastings Intercultural Organisation