After cancellation of the Old Town Carnival Week last year under pandemic conditions, the 2021 celebrations have gone ahead largely unbridled, though some events – in particular the Pram Race, Bike race and Seaboot Race – have been abandoned. They will culminate in the Grand Procession on Saturday afternoon, due to move off from Rock-a-Nore Road at 3pm. At dusk there will be the traditional firework display from the Castle grounds.

CREDIT: Andy Clifton

It will not be clear until less than 24 hours beforehand how many floats will join the cavalcade, since entry forms can be registered up to Friday evening. But in any event, there will be no cups or awards presented – the Carnival committee say that the theme of the afternoon will be one of “thank you” to all the people, particularly key workers, who have helped the town through the pandemic.

Carnival Week started last Friday evening with the Town Criers competition held on the steps of St Clements Church; the next day was a Tug of War contest, held outside the lifeboat station. And there will have been a number of walks, open gardens, church tours and other events through the week, with special exhibitions at the Fishermen’s Museum, Hastings History House in Courthouse Street (where Street Brocante stalls will
be trading) and Hastings Contemporary art gallery.

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