Visitor group from Sierra Leone enjoys a taste of 1066 Country

Visitors from Sierra Leone with Mad Jack's Morris
Visitors from Sierra Leone with Mad Jack's Morris

A GROUP of people from Hastings in Sierra Leone are currently in town, enjoying a visit to their namesake in 1066 Country.

The visit follows hot on the heels of the recent trip by Hastings UK teachers, volunteers and council officers to the African country in February.

This week nine teachers and the former Head Man, Kainde Pearce, from Hastings in Sierra Leone met with staff and students and teaching in their partner schools here and learned more about waste and recycling throughout the visit.

On Tuesday (May 20) they also met Mayor Alan Roberts at the Town Hall in Queen’s Square, Priory Meadow.

Roger Mitchell, co-ordinator of the school exchange visits, said: ”They have been able to enrich the education of our children by telling of life in their home country and studying aspects of food production, fishing industries, family life, water use and other issues.

“This is the fourth year that these exchanges of staff have taken place, largely funded by grants from the British Council, building lasting friendships and global understanding between our communities.”

Richard Homewood, new chairman of the Hastings Sierra Leone Friendship Link, and director of environmental services at Hastings Borough Council, said: “It has been great to welcome our friends back from Hastings Sierra Leone and show them Hastings and 1066 Country.

“Kainde has been able to learn more about how we recycle and deal with rubbish and keep our town clean so that he can take back good practice to our twin town.

“And there has been an opportunity to see something of our countryside and to understand some of our history.

“On Sunday afternoon the party enjoyed a visit to Bodiam Castle being introduced to aspects of medieval English life.

“This was followed by a ride on the Kent and East Sussex Railway where, on a special theme day, they experienced a taste of life in England during the Second World War and were treated to an aerial display by a Spitfire.

“On Monday they were treated to a display of traditional Morris dancing on the Stade Open Space courtesy of local dance side Mad Jack’s Morris, and particularly seemed to enjoy taking part in the final dance.”