The Hastings Virtual Stage

We’ve devised The Hastings Virtual Stage to showcase local talent and make people smile at the same time.

If you sing, dance, act, play a musical instrument, just want to show off or have ideas on how to keep us fit, healthy and active then video yourself and send it to us either by email to or upload it to our Facebook group

Steve Hewlett

Steve has produced a second piece exclusively for the Hastings In Focus audience. He introduces us to ‘Diddy Doddy’ as he pays tribute to one of his idols, the great Ken Dodd.

Mike Hatchard

Mike says: “I think this is the most ambitious thing I’ve ever recorded. As it was Beatles Day on Sunday (or would have been) I thought I’d try ‘You Never Give Me Your Money.’ I started off trying to copy the Beatles as closely as possible and then tried to take it somewhere else altogether.

“The ending took even me by surprise. As usual, no midi, no pitch or time shifting, all real instruments. This took me a LONG time so if you hate it be gentle…”

Kiya and Aria Fuggle

St Leonards man Graham Wilkins is very proud of hid granddaughters Kiya and Aria Fuggle. The twins have reimagined the lyric of a song from the film Rock’n Royals to praise the nurses and other medical staff who are working tirelessly to save victims of the Coronavirus.

James Bacon

Hastings’ Deputy Mayor brings us his second children’s story which might keep your little ones amused for a few minutes.

Steve Hewlett

Steve has appeared all over the world with his ventriloquist act alongside his old friend Arthur Lager. He played The Stables last month and is, of course, remembered for his time on Britain’s Got Talent. Steve wanted to be a ventriloquist since he was a boy and here he introduces himself and talks a little about what he has done before introducing us to Arthur.

Eva Pomery

Eva gives us another classic, To Sir With Love. It was the theme from James Clavell’s 1967 film To Sir, with Love. The song was performed by Lulu, was written by Don Black and Mark London – who was the husband of Lulu’s manager Marion Massey. Mickie Most produced the record, with Mike Leander arranging and conducting. The song reached No. 1 in the United States and became the bestselling song of 1967 in the US.

James Bacon

Hastings Deputy Mayor works in a primary school for his day job which makes him ideally placed to do these story readings.

Eva Pomery

The latest contribution from Eva, this time she takes on a Cilla Black classic and does it proud.

John Knowles and Kate Tym

John and Kate’s Penny Pincher’s Christmas Carol is a local institution but they have done other things together and here’s an example, let’s enjoy their Table Talk

Mike Hatchard

Anyone who has seen Mike Hatchard perform cannot fail but to be wowed by his versatility. He was involved in A Bottle of Hastings which was a sell-out at the Hastings Fringe last year. Here’s something from Mike…

Paul McCleery

A local personal trainer Paul says you have to get three things from exercise; it has to put a smile on your face, it has to be creative and you need to derive some benefit from it – in just over a minute he explains how you can do all that! Find out more about Paul at

Kate Tym

We’ve got some great stuff coming up from Kate Tym but here’s the first piece she has sent us, recorded in 2016 it’s her poetic protest against the tampon tax… perhaps not one for the kids!

More from Adam Wide

“Type ‘Adam Wide’ into YouTube and be appalled,” Adam told us, so we did and here’s something else from his ‘back catalogue’ that we’re certain will make you smile

From the HIF archive

Today’s selection is the short version of the video we shot with our good friends Stu Allen, EWW’s Dominator, on the day he retired after 25 years as one of the UK’s top professional wrestlers

At home with the Bendells

Let’s have some more of this kind of material, Mike Bendell and his family might be in lock down but that’s not stopping them having a bit of fun

Adam Wide

Adam Wide moved to the town just a few years ago but has already made a big impression on his beloved ‘St Lennies’. He’s had a fascinating career and sent us this link to an appearance he made with Noel Edmonds some years ago as Clarence, we hope you enjoy…

Eva Pomery

With so many events being cancelled many performers are left having rehearsed and prepared material to perform that will now not see the light of day as planned. Eva Pomery was due to have sung this song at this year’s Beatles Day but it’s getting its premiere here instead…

Andrew Sutherland

He might be based up in Scotland but Andrew Sutherland heard about the Hastings Virtual Stage and now we have a number of pieces of organ music performed by Andrew at home that we can share with you in the coming days… here’s the first, some Bach – Prelude in C major… click the link below

Comedy selection

Only readers of a certain age will remember newsreader Reginald Bosanquet and the satirical show Not The Nine O’Clock news, the songs in the show were very clever in terms of lyrics, e hope you’ll enjoy this one…

From the HIF archive

It’s a couple of years now since Hastings Old Town won the Rambler’s award as the top ‘walking neighbourhood’ in the UK. Hre’s the film we made to celebrate…

Day one performances

Our first performer is 17-year-old Eva Pomery who lives with her parents in St Leonards. She has been a regular at Beatles Day and recently starred in a performance of Guys and Dolls. Here’s her rendition of Every Breath You Take. We’ll be hearing more from Eva and more about Eva in the coming days.

Kate Goldfinch gives us Juliet’s monologue from Romeo and Juliet, Kate says: “I’m out of work because of Covid-19 so any way to earn some cash through performing during these times would be a real bonus. I’m available for virtual readings, presenting and such…”

Sit back and enjoy a great performance.

The virtual stage might satisfy your mind but what about your body? We’ll all need to stay active during these days of isolation. Carl Denne from Hastings Kickboxing Academy offered us this, an introduction to ‘padding’.

It’s a fun way to get yourself moving, is pretty gentle, if you’ve never done anything before, and now is as good a chance as any to try something new. Carl is setting up a range of online classes to help people stay fit and mobile find out more here

Each day we’ll select something for you at random from the internet that we think might make you laugh, today’s comes from Max and Mel Brooks.

And finally here’s a recommended listen from the Hastings In Focus sound and vision archive. Today we highlight an interview with a fascinating young man who took himself off to Latin America for a few months travelling last year, before coming back to make a bit of a name for himself in the world of fashion, that’s Daniel Robinson.

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The sad history of St Leonards Parish Church

Once again courtesy of Derelict In The UK we bring you photographs of iconic and deserted buildings, this time St Leonards Parish Church. Standing grand on the St Leonards seafront, this beautiful building was completed in 1961 to replace its predecessor destroyed by a direct hit from V-1 ‘doodlebug’. It originally had structural building problems […]

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