It is now just the Havelock, the General has been demoted back to the ranks although the ranks did appear to be enjoying singing to the juke box and watching the horse racing on one of the many TVs.
Refreshed and re-opened, this renowned heritage pub has an updated appearance that belies its history and thankfully, the Grade 2 listed and protected tiled pictures that make up one wall have been preserved.
In some ways, the Havelock is more luxurious with its light coloured paint, comfy chairs, carpets and wooden flooring but it is early days and with beer at £2.50 a pint, that pristine gloss may soon disappear.
Thankfully for me, there was an alternative to the lager offerings of the two T-bars and the Doomed on handpump in the excellent Tim Taylor’s Landlord. A pint to enjoy with time to savour the tiled picture of the Battle of Hastings.
8.30pm on a Tuesday night was perhaps not the best time to visit the Havelock for a quiet pint, during the day might be better but those tiled wall pictures and the Tim Taylors were worth the visit.
In the fifteen years that I have lived in Hastings, ownership of this historic pub has changed more than once, and it has been closed two or three times with landlords struggling for profitability amidst rising town centre rents. If a juke box, TVs, a fruit machine and a weekly meat raffle keep the old General alive then I will be happy to include this new Havelock in ‘Beer Notes’ and in ‘Pub Walks in Hastings and St Leonards’.
Follow this link to read my original Blog posted in 2017
The Havelock appears in ‘Pub Walks in Hastings and St Leonards’ and in the soon to be published
Beer Notes to ‘Capital to Coast, the Guide to Walking 1066 Harold’s Way’.
This pub guide is a ‘must have’ accompaniment for the discerning walker on ‘1066 Harold’s Way’– the long-distance walk from Westminster Abbey to Battle Abbey and Hastings Castle inspired by King Harold’s epic march to the Battle of Hastings 1066.
The Havelock will be No 64 and the final entry in the Beer Notes Guide.