Hastings Old Town Carnival Sea Court

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Hastings Old Town Sea Court 2018

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Hastings does it the Hastings Way

Sunday night, 15th April 2018 in the East Hastings Sea Angling Club, Hastings Old Town Carnival made history by selecting 75 year old Monica Bane as this year’s Hastings Old Town Sea Queen, the updated title for the Hastings Old Town Carnival Queen. This isn’t the first time Monica has entered the contest, in 1970 she won the original title for the first time.

After a lot of discussion and informal consultation the Hastings Old Town Carnival Committee had decided earlier in the year that the selection process should be more open and accessible with no upper age limit and no gender restriction - and this was before carnival committees in other towns hit the headlines because they were having problems attracting young women. Hastings Old Town Carnival Committee has never subscribed to the ‘Glamour Model’ school preferring instead to select its court on personality and affection for Hastings so removing the stereotypical image of a carnival court and replacing it with a ‘Sea Court’ to reflect Hastings’ maritime heritage was the logical next step toward a new, much more inclusive Carnival and now a brand new, vibrant, 21st century Hastings Sea Court has been selected and it’s believed that Sophia Evans is the country’s first transgender Carnival Court Attendant. The contestants were introduced and interviewed by Hastings’ last Old Town Carnival Queen, Lizzie Fowler who noted that she would be the last to hold that title because it has being replaced with the ‘Sea Queen’ and ‘Sea King’.

The judging panel of Hastings’ Mayor, cllr Judy Rogers, chair of the Hastings Week Committee Nigel Hogben and Hastings Week Events Organiser, Sharon Johnson admitted later that the quality of entrant was so high that it had been very difficult to arrive at the final decision.

Hastings Old Town Carnival Sea Court
Monica Bane 75, Sea Queen  who applied because “I am 75 years old, and live in Hastings. I am an Old Towner and was Carnival Queen in the 70's. I would like to be on the Sea Court because I am an old town girl and I love the old town. I like to live for each day and love new adventures!”

Dominic Cockerton, 24 – Sea King, an administrator in the NHS and, as soon as he told Lizzie during his interview that he was a member of the Winkle Club he was asked to ‘winkle up’ by fellow member, Carnival chair Keith Leech and found that he had left his mollusc in his jacket so had to pay a fine to charity. Dominic said he wanted to represent the town and felt he had the personality to do it.

Sophia Alexa Evans, 41, Carnival Sea Court Attendant said she wanted to be a part of the Court to promote transgender awareness as she is trans herself and wanted to show other trans women that we are beautiful too.

Rai Hickflay, 34 Honorary Attendant  entered because she has lived in Hastings for nearly 30 years,  Rai really enjoys carnival and would love to be part of it this year.

Danielle Mann 28 – Honorary Attendant  studies at Sussex Coast College and was born in St Leonards where she now lives. Danielle says “I'm kind and polite and it would be nice to represent the community I live in as Sea Queen. I like the idea of being a queen/princess for the day”

Sam Hickflay, 36 Sea Court Attandant said that when he found out that his wife had applied and that there was an opening for a Sea King as well he wanted to join her in this fascinating opportunity Sam said “Hastings has been my home all my life and I have seen many changes in the town, watched it going from strength to strength and would like to be part of its continued regeneration”

 
 

Carnival Court Sponsors 2018

Hastings Lions Thimbelinas (4 Russel Street, Hastings, TN34 1QU) has so kindly donated a large quantity of fabric for the courts cloaks,

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