The early 1880s saw the start of an economic depression that forced most Hastings fishing families into destitution and poverty. Many fishermen sought relief in the large number of pubs in the Old Town, so in 1882 local benefactors sought to help them by turning a large hall into an alcohol-free refuge and education centre.
A charity was set up to both manage the hall and provide financial assistance to those fishermen most in need. Over the years the hall has become a home on the top floor and a fishermen’s club on the lower floors.
The charity has a variety of trustees, including the All Saints parish rector, and comes under the wing of the Fishermen’s Protection Society. With the fishing industry again in decline, the charity is trying to raise more funding for distressed fishermen and their families. Any donations would be gratefully received.