Old Images of Hastings, East Sussex

Categorised as East Sussex
Old photo postcard of All Saints Street Hastings East Sussex England UK

Glimpse history through old images of Hastings, East Sussex, England.

More Than A Century Ago

Step back to somewhere between 1910 and 1919. The ladies wear long skirts almost to the ground, and every man, woman and child wears a hat. Hastings offers a lovely holiday destination, packed with history, and sport, and pretty gardens.

Hastings (1910-1919): British Pathé on YouTube


Edwardian Celebrities

Actor-manager Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree, illustrator Harry Furniss, and Lord Brassey arrived in town in the early years of the twentieth century.

Sir Herbert Tree (1910-1917) – British Pathé on YouTube


WWI Canadian Basketball

Filmed during the Great War, later known as World War I, this Canadian basketball match certainly drew in a good crowd of spectators. The footage also includes views of some of the buildings in the background.

Canadian Baseball At Hastings (1914-1918) – British Pathé on YouTube


WWI German Submarine

Submarines were a important part of both British and German naval forces during World War I.

The wreckage of a German submarine caused a stir when it first arrived in Hastings. It was quickly used for scrap processing for iron.

An In Glorious End (1914-1918) – British Pathé on YouTube


WWI Sea Angling Competition

Wounded soldiers took part in the Sea Angling Competition from the pier.

Sea Angling Festival (1914-1918) – British Pathé on YouTube


The Hastings Pastoral 1918

This event was held to raise money for the local Doctor Barnardo’s Homes.

The Hastings Pastoral In Aid Of Dr. Barnardo’s Homes. (1918) – British Pathé on YouTube


German Submarine 1919

A gale washed up the wreckage of another submarine in 1919.

Another U-Boat (1919) – British Pathé on YouTube


Entertainer 1919

The Tub Man – A Hastings Study (1919) – British Pathé on YouTube


Town Criers 1920

Oyez Oyez AKA Oyez! Oyez! (1920) – British Pathé on YouTube


Submarine Disaster 1921

During World War I, the Royal Navy launched a series of K-class submarines, including HMS K5 which was put into service in 1917.

At the end of the war in 1918, K5 was part of the 12th Submarine Flotilla based at Rosyth, along with six others of the K-class.

On 19 January 1921, the K5 was one of a number of K-class submarines who left Torbay for a mock battle in the Bay of Biscay. Lieutenant Commander John A Gaimes, DSO, RN, was an experienced commander, but had a new crew onboard.

The decision to take K-classes into the Atlantic in the winter time was a bad one, since they were designed especially for the conditions of the North Sea.

All 57 men on board the K5 died when the submarine submerged for exercises, never to be seen again except for an oil slick, planks from the battery covers, and a sailor’s ‘ditty’ box’. It is thought the submarine fell below its maximum depth, and was crushed in the deep waters.

Another K-class submarine, HMS K13, suffered a similar fate, with the loss of the 32 crew members on board.

The ill-fated K-5 is shown in the centre of this footage. The reel states it’s Hastings, but it’s unclear where or when. The bridge at the beginning of the clip doesn’t look right, so is it off the coast of Hastings when they are in open water?

Hastings Another U-Boat (1921) – British Pathé on YouTube


Sea Anglers 1925

The young man in the thumbnail image of this silent newsreel looks more like he’s from the 1960s, but the date of 1925 is correct.

It’s a nice short film, packed with images of the seafront, pier, many boats, and hundreds of sea anglers taking part in the competition.

1000 Fishers (1925) – British Pathé on YouTube


Town Criers 1926

The 1926 Town Criers’ Competition brought out lots of spectators and contestants.

“Oyez, Oyez, Oyez” (1926) – British Pathé on YouTube


Prince of Wales Visit 1926

Cheers All The Way (1926) – British Pathé on YouTube


Hastings Festival 1926

Revelry at Hastings Festival (1926)- British Pathé on YouTube


Visit by Prince of Wales (1927)

The Prince of Wales (later – and briefly – King Edward VIII) was greeted by large and orderly crowds of wellwishers in 1927.

Prince of Wales visits Hastings (1927): British Pathé (YouTube)


Bowling 1927

C. Gurney won the Hastings Bowling Tournament in 1927.

Bowling match at Hastings (1927) – British Pathé on YouTube


Admiral Earl Jellicoe 1928

The Admiral Earl Jellico received Freddom of the Borough of Hastings in 1928, with great pomp and ceremony.

Admiral Earl Jellicoe (1928) – British Pathé on YouTube


Physical Exercise 1928

Lots of children under the age of 14 put on a public exercise display in 1928.

“On The Hands… Down!” (1928) – British Pathé on YouTube


French Mayors Visit 1929

In 1929, 10 French Mayors from towns in Normandy – one of them an British citizen – visited the area in and around Hastings.

Vive L’entente Cordiale (1929) – British Pathé on YouTube


Stormy Sea 1932

A 100 mile an hour gale caused giant waves in 1932.

Sea! … Sea!! … Thou Mighty Monster! (1932) – British Pathé on YouTube


Sun Cult 1933

This footage starts elsewhere, probably in the Serpentine in London, before moving to the busy beaches in Hastings.

Sun Cult (1933) – British Pathé on YouTube


Tope Fishing 1933

Sportshots No 22 – Tope Fishing (1933) – British Pathé on YouTube


Beauty Competition 1934

Young beautiful women from several European countries took part in the beauty contest for the 1934 Carinal, where they were welcomed by the Lord Mayor.

Hastings Again Invaded 1066 – 1934 (1934): British Pathé on YouTube

Sub: Another Coronation At Hastings (1934) – British Pathé on YouTube


Water Polo 1934

Black and white footage of the 1934 Scottish and Belgian water polo teams in training.

Water Polo (1934)- British Pathé on YouTube


Norman Conquest Sites 1935

This 1935 newsreel opens with the seafront at Hastings to tell us this wasn’t where the famous battle occurred. It’s a nice shots of the buildings along the promenade.

Next the newsreel moves inland to rolling hills, then on to the centre of Battle, and several scenes around Battle Abbey.

1066 – Where The Famous Battle Was Really Fought (1935) – British Pathé on YouTube


Fancy Dress 1935

Do You Fancy Dress? (1935) – British Pathé on YouTube


Carnival 1936

Hastings & St. Leonards Carnival (1936) – British Pathé on YouTube


Training Swim 1945

George Booker swam from Beachy Head to Hastings as part of his training to swim the English Channel.

Beachy Head To Hastings (1945) – British Pathé on YouTube


1946 Vision For The Future

See footage of the town’s streets in 1946. Then scenes of the planners’ model as they discuss their horrifying plans to put the motor vehicle at the heart of urban planning.

Model Of The New Hastings (1946): British Pathé (YouTube)


Bowls and Beauty 1946

A newsreel about the town’s bowling contest was accompanied by news about the other competition taking place – the hooded bathing beauty.

UK: SPORTS: Hastings bowls contest and hooded bathing beauty show at seaside resorts (1946) – British Pathé on YouTube


Fishermen 1947

Following the end of World War I, the planners tried to remove fishermen from The Stade. But the fishermen were not about to give up a way of life that had existed at that location for centuries. It took 25 years to resolve the issue, with the fishermen allowed to stay.

Hastings Fishing Village Issue Title Pathe Pictorial Goes To Sea (1947): British Pathé (YouTube)


Landladies 1948

Today, we are used to regular training to improve our standards at work. Maintaining good standards of accommodation would have been important in post-war Britain, as society adjusted back to normality with the end of World War I.

I’m struck by the women sitting in hats and outdoor coats, smartly dressed in what was probably a cold room.

School For Landladies (1948) – British Pathé on YouTube


Sea Angling Competition 1948

The pier was a natural location for sea angling competitions, including this one from 1948.

Sea Anglers Hook Monsters (1948) – British Pathé on YouTube


1950 Carnival

Huge numbers of participants and spectators turned out for the Hasting Carnival in 1950.

Annual Carnival at Hastings (1950): British Pathé on YouTube


Ecclesbourne Glen 1950

Mrs Joan Woolner lived close to Hastings at Ecclesbourne Glen, in a house which was literally on the edge of a cliff.

Cliff-Top House (1950) – British Pathé on YouTube


Royal Visit to Sussex 1951

This 7 minute newsreel shows the Royal Visit to Hastings, Brighton, Lewes and Hove in 1951.

Special – The Royal Visit Aka Royal Visit To Sussex – Long Version (1951)- British Pathé on YouTube


Shells 1952

The Mayfair hairdresser Rene came down to Cooden Beach to collect shells for his hair styling accessories.

Seaside Hairstyles (1952) – British Pathé on YouTube


Town Criers 1952

The Town Criers contest once against drew lots of attention.

Town Criers Contest (1952) – British Pathé on YouTube


Sea Angling Competition 1952

Hastings Angling Festival (1952) – British Pathé on YouTube


Town Criers 1954

National Town Criers Championship – Reel 1 (1954) – British Pathé on YouTube

National Town Criers Championship – Reel 2 (1954) – British Pathé on YouTube


Churchill & Monty 1955

In 1955, Winston Churchill and Field Marshal Montgomery (popularly known as Monty) were in town.

Sir Winston Gets The Winkle (1955) – British Pathé on YouTube


Scooter Rally 1955

Scooter Rally Beware – Other Colour Pics Share This Title (1955) – British Pathé on YouTube


1960s Hastings

Silent 1960s footage of the town includes shots of the beach and the pier.

Views Of Hastings (1960-1969) – British Pathé on YouTube


Brotherhood of Magicians 1960

In 1960, the conference held by the International Brotherhood of Magicians was filmed, giving some nice shots of their activites as well as surrounding homes and businesses.

Balance On Broom Aka Brotherhood Of Magicians (1960) – British Pathé on YouTube

Before Your Very Eyes (1960) – British Pathé on YouTube

Plastic Bag Magician (1960) – British Pathé on YouTube


Helipede 1961

Amused spectators watch John Davies pedalling the Helipede, a pedal powered helicopter…or not.

Inventions Rise And Fall (1961) – British Pathé on YouTube


Mods & Rockers 1964

Seaside towns across southern England in 1964 were very concerned about the violent clashes between groups of Mods & Rockers who arrived in great numbers on bank holiday weekends.

The young people in this footage, should they still be around, will now be old people in their 80s.

Hastings Rocks The Mods (1964) – British Pathé on YouTube


Gannymede Model Village 1967

Gannymede Model Village (1967) – British Pathé on YouTube


Chess Contest

This locally held Chess Contest was filmed in either 1969 or 1970.

Hastings Chess Contest (1969-1970) – British Pathé on YouTube


Hastings Pier

Hastings Pier: A Journey through Time! The Time Travel Artist (YouTube)


More about East Sussex

By Debbie Death

I love learning about history, and for the past 30 years have enjoyed books, films, and documentaries on the topic. On days off from work my favourite destination with friends and family are museums, historic buildings, and archaeological sites, or just walking around interesting streets with old buildings to admire.