When the tide goes out in Hastings, the receding water reveals flat sands. Opposite the castle and extending for several hundred meters along are sandstone rocks. These provideÂ great rock pools, where children and adults can enjoy searching for sea creatures. The seagullsÂ like them too, as they provide easy access to fresh seafood, rather than their usual diet of discarded human food waste. These rocks are what I’ve always known as the Castle Rocks.
In earlyÂ 1287, the south east coast of England was hit by a significant storm and flood. This, and two other similar events that followed within a yearÂ had a profound effect on the fortunes of many towns on the south east and east coast of England.Â Back then, in Hastings, the sea washed up against the cliffs. The large shingle beach we have today didn’t exist. As a result of the storm,Â part of the cliff thatÂ Castle standsÂ upon collapsed into the sea, taking with it the keep and outer wall of the castle. The debris partially blocked the old harbour, which in the following decades began to silt up.
The rocks you see in these pictures are probably the remnants of that collapse. I say probably because I can’t find any info to tell me otherwise so I’m relying on what I was told as a child. Makes sense though. These photos of Hastings Castle Rocks can be viewed full size on Flickr by clicking on them.