Hastings Battleaxe gets gloomy at Ravenside

Just for strangers – what is Ravenside? It’s our very own local Out of Town Retail Park, those places deemed so desirable in the 1980s and 1990s. They must take some responsibility for the death of our high streets….. When we first moved to Hastings we were much struck with the novelty and excitement of a sea-side retail park, where you could go to B&Q and then go to the beach, but maybe that’s worn off….


What fresh hell is this etc.

But, as Philosopher said, how could you have a B&Q on the high street? How could you carry your planks of wood to the car? What if you buy a telly from Currys/PCWorld? Those places have to go somewhere accessible by car. True, I guess, but they don’t have to be followed out there by Boots, Next, M & S etc.
Well, it is a gloomy time of the year, isn’t it. All these photos are very grey, but the sea looks faintly mystic and romantic.
Battleaxe has had a bad cold for the past week or so and has not felt like doing much, even writing blog posts. Summoned myself up to do several WI things which sapped energy even further. Going to have a coffee and a slice of Bakewell tart in Marks at Ravenside felt quite exciting.
Ravenside is a fairly horrible place, but usually very busy… I am always intrigued by a little colony of starlings which live in a cluster of shrivelled trees and stunted shrubs by the Hog Roast/Burger stall. They must be the unhealthiest birds in the country with their diet of greasy scraps….

No starlings today…

We had a coffee in Marks. It is never very busy in there, but they do have a sea-view cafe, which is OK.

Sea view from M & S cafe.

I can’t say anything against that particular Marks store because recently the manager came to the WI and did us a fantastic fashion show, using some of our members as models. She said she’d help any of us to find what we wanted, and I have no doubt she would, but I don’t tend to linger in there – just grab a couple of HeatGen tops and rush out again…. but OK I will say one thing. I saw this skirt. It was in the sale and are you surprised? A bottle-green plastic pleated skirt would not be my garment of choice. (Philosopher and I refer to that particular material as Skivertex – from old Private Eyes.).


We had a look at the swimming pool, which is also on the Ravenside site, and actually quite good – but too far from our house in bad traffic for us ever to be motivated to go there.

Not a bad swimming pool….

Then, a walk by the sea, which is always restorative to the spirits.  You get to the beach via a tunnel under the railway line – it is like passing through to another world.

Through the tunnel…..
To the other side….

We saw these turnstones clustered round a litter bin on Galley Hill. They were remarkably tame. I have written a previous post about the walk over Galley Hill to Bexhill. That was way back in January 2015. … the weather was so much brighter then…

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View back to Hastings.

The little cafe at the end of the tunnel was closed for the winter. Closed? Reminds me of Hastings Pier – oh, don’t go there… it is our own local Brexit. Brexit?  Oh don’t go there either.
Is it any wonder I feel gloomy?


  1. Jill Fricker
    April 30, 2019 / 10:50 pm

    Love your posts, Steph! They always make me smile . . . Ravenside, Battle Road, alleyways off Bohemia with their swirling litter – all places I try very hard to avoid . . .

    • May 1, 2019 / 7:42 am

      Thanks Jill! Perhaps I’ll do a post on the scuzziest places in Hastings…

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