Chapmans’ Dairy Talk 4pm Sunday 28 April Royal Victoria Hotel

This talk will be given by our Chair, Stephen van Dulken, but mainly based on research by Christopher Maxwell-Stewart. The dairy was a family business which migrated from Hastings to the corner of Gensing Road and North Street and involved reconstructing two houses from the America Ground. The talk will include some very rarely seen […]

Walk: The Former Pubs of St Leonards, Sunday May 5 – Now Fully subscribed

On Sunday May 5 our Chairman Stephen Van Dulken will lead a historic  walk around the sites of St Leonards public houses that have now sadly disappeared. The walk will start at 3pm, it is expected to take around 1 hour, and will conclude at a pub that is actually still in operation. This walk […]

The temperance movement in Victorian St Leonards

Many local branches of national societies urging temperance or total abstinence flourished in St Leonards on Sea in Victorian times. This article gives an idea of the scale of the local movement, and is based on the detailed coverage given each week in the Hastings and St Leonards Observer, which often quoted from speeches, or […]

Charles John Batstone and his many occupations

In transcribing the 1861 census for St Leonards I noticed that the very last household is an “omitted” entry, though we are not told from where the details had been missed. The household is: Charles Batstone, head, married, 31, builder & carpenter, born Surrey Newington Frances S. Batstone, wife, married, 30, do wife, born Sussex […]

The landlord and the soldiers

This post’s title is the headline of a case before the Hastings Bench, as reported in the Hastings and St Leonards Observer, 7 September 1878. I was astonished that billeting soldiers was still going on as late as 1878. The account given below is an insight into how billeting worked in practice. The North Star […]

Quebec House School, Pevensey Road

I came across a newspaper account of an extension to Quebec House School, Upper Maze Hill, in the Hastings and St Leonards Observer, 12 July 1873. The principal, Mr T. Russell Wilkinson, had negotiated with the landlord, Mr Sellman, while Mr Howell was the builder. I wondered where this school was. No Quebec House was, […]

A husband on sufferance in his wife’s house

This post’s title is the dramatic first sentence, in capital letters, of a report from the magistrates’ court at Hastings, in the Hastings and St Leonards Observer, 22 October 1870. It continues: JOHN THOMAS MULHEARN, of 28, Warrior-square, coachmaker, was summoned, but did not appear, for having disturbed and annoyed his wife, Jane Mulhearn. Mr […]