From Hastings with love… OPEN to all!

There’s a new community creative café and exhibition space set to launch on Grand Parade, St Leonards on Sea next week.

The official launch of OPEN, a new community endeavour will be marked with a photographic exhibition by local photographer Andrew Grainger.

OPEN, at 19 Grand Parade, is opening as a community-run creative café and exhibition space and for it’s first exhibition it is running From Hastings, With Love. Making up the exhibition are portraits Grainger has taken of families who have arrived in the area as part of the Syrian Resettlement Project, alongside their ‘buddies’ – the local volunteers who, as part of the Hastings and Rother Refugee Buddy Project, have been welcoming them to their new homes over the past 18 months.

HastingsWithLoveInviteTaken around the town in places chosen by the families and buddies themselves, Grainger’s photographs promise to give an emotional insight into the friendships which are being built by this local project.

Following the launch on June 13th, the space will officially open as a community café, alongside the other businesses present onsite. 

These include Yard & Quarter, Hairdresser James Nash, On the Wall Framing with Dominic the Framer, and 55 Prints, a new screen-printing company, will all continue to operate out of the space.

In addition there are three desks to hire to the rear of the property. Rummy Thind, Mindful Meditation Practitioner and teacher, will be renting one, the second is earmarked for the Buddy Project administrator, while the third is available for hire.

Alongside the exhibition space and community café, OPEN will also host a range of workshops and be available for hire for events and pop-up activities. The aim is to feature artists who are not usually able to show their work, but all enquiries about hiring the space are welcome.

The free launch event will run from 6-8pm, with refreshments available. Attendees are asked to RSVP to

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