|Where:||Hastings, Sussex starting at the Fishermans Museum, All Saints Street|
|When:||May Day Bank Holiday Monday|
|Time:||From 10 am|
Hastings hosts this festival each May Day Bank Holiday weekend (that’s the one early in the month). The main man is of course Jack himself, who is basically a man covered by a giant May Garland, and he leads a procession through town accompanied by morris men, Bogies and a May Queen to name but a few; once the procession arrives near the Castle at 3.30, Jack is slain and the Spirit of Spring released. The original ancient festival lapsed during the late Nineteenth Century, but it was revived during the 1980s and is now a very well established part of the calendar. The Procession is the highlight of the festival but music and dance events take place over the whole weekend. Also take time to visit the free Jack in the Green exhibition at History House on Courthouse Street – merchandise relating to the festival is on sale here. In 2012 the City of London Jack in the Green joined in the festivities.
Allow lots of time to get parked -Hastings was virtually at a standstill when we arrived. The castle is steep and not particularly easy to walk around so take extra care especially with small children. After Jack is slain, visitors can take home pieces of his greenery for luck – there’s plenty to go ’round so no need to storm the stage!
In 2017 the Procession will take place on Monday May 1st and it now finishes at West Hill opposite the Castle instead of inside the Castle grounds. There are related activities over the whole weekend – for full details and also for a complete breakdown of exactly what happens on the day, visit the website link below.
To find out more read “The Hastings Jack in the Green” by Keith Leech (one of Jack’s Bogies).
Click here for the event website: http://www.hastingsjack.co.uk