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Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:52 pm
by SeasideResearcher
Love the seaside? Tell us, why you moved to Hastings and your experiences as a resident

Researchers from the University of Plymouth and the University of Hertfordshire are interested in the motivations, skills and aspirations of in-movers to Hastings. Our focus is on everybody over 18 years of age who is not originally from Hastings, albeit the young, the middle-aged and the old, recent in-movers or older in-movers, the homeless, the semi-retired, or those desiring a lifestyle change. We are therefore interested in finding out from you, the motivations and reasons for your move to Hastings and your experiences as resident.

Please complete our survey:
Should take no more than five minutes to complete, all responses are appreciated and anonymity is assured.

It is intended that this project contributes to an evidence base regarding the social, economic and cultural impacts associated with in-movers, to seaside towns generally and more specifically in relation to Hastings.

If you are prepared to be interviewed, whether face-to-face or via telephone, or if you have any questions or queries about this project, please contact Dr Steve Jakes at the University of Plymouth: [url][/url]

Obtaining the views of as many people as possible is important to us, so please take our survey and make contact if you are happy to be interviewed.

We really appreciate your help with this important research project!
Steve Jakes

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 8:49 pm
by Richard
"Researchers from the University of Plymouth and the University of Hertfordshire are interested in the motivations, skills and aspirations of in-movers to Hastings."

I am not at all sure why Plymouth and Hertfordshire Universities are interested in the migration to Hastings in particular.
People move (and have moved from Victorian times), for any number of reasons but more recently the following issues seem relevant:

1. Many professional people have moved in, from the close proximity of London, because of the ability to work (via the internet businesses they operate within) in a place offering a better quality of life to raise children safely, without the pressures or the need to be based in a crowded city. Properties, above a certain price band, are mainly acquired by young London professionals (who are relatively wealthy) or similar from the Brighton area.
2. There are also an awful lot of people with special needs in Hastings and organisations catering for them are based here because of historic charities set up locally, in the past, who still find cheaper accommodation, networks of allied groups, and can offer a safer environment.
3. Immigrants from non-European and European countries alike have, rather more recently, discovered Hastings to be an ideal opportunity to set up businesses or provide property building and repair services, of a financially advantageous nature, in a life-style far removed from pressures they may have encountered elsewhere.
4. Elderly people have also looked for retirement opportunities in Hastings or Eastbourne but the latter caters for the more affluent elderly, as far as I can determine.
5. Hastings is also basically a working-class holiday town for families with young children.
6. London councils have, in the past, paid Hastings and other marginal seaside towns to accept those who were very low-waged or living on benefits and were occupying properties beyond their means.

Shifts in demographics are complex and ever-changing, always have been, it seems.
There is little industry in Hastings, many locals who are unemployed cannot find opportunities, are depressed and may eat and drink too much and some take drugs.

If such surveys/market-researches are being done in order to address the issues and find out how to put the sparkle and confidence or sense of community, back into ordinary people's lives, then so much the better...

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:41 pm
by SeasideResearcher
Hi Richard,

Thank you for your post. It is precisely these patterns of in-ward movement that the research team are investigating, we are examining their nature, level and extent and their relative importance as well as influence on the social and economic performance of Hastings and seaside towns generally. While much has been said about such patterns, our knowledge and understanding of them and their impacts (good and bad) is partial; indeed, the existing research base is patchy, meaning there is inadequate evidence which is hampering efforts to devise appropriate interventions/management responses, harness the benefits and ultimately, improve the prospects of seaside towns.

At the University of Plymouth and at the University of Hertfordshire, there is a small but distinct team that have long been interested in social and economic change in coastal communities, working on contributing to various policy agendas on regenerating seaside towns. I hope this information helps, please feel free to email me for further information.

If any forum members reading this are in-movers, we would really appreciate you taking our survey about decision-to-move to the seaside and your experiences as a resident. Thank you! Here is the link to the survey:

Dr Steve Jakes

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:14 pm
by Richard
Hello Dr Steve Jakes,

If you are working with Hastings Council you will be aware that they have a lot of skin in the game, so to speak and are often criticised for accepting grant monies from outside bodies that fail to take into account unforeseen circumstances and projects often fail as a result.
In that sense what you are discussing begins to make some sense, if you can provide better data on the chance of success of, say, building a University in Hastings or establishing a tramway along the promenade.
If grant money is being taken by the council on the basis false forecasts/predictions, then a better understanding of all the factors is surely worth pursuing, unless the council have other motives?

Hastings Council's planning strategy 2011-2028, at its core, considers regeneration, economic growth and prosperity for the town.
But they also need to protect the heritage of Hastings, in terms of both historic buildings and open spaces, while ensuring new development is of the highest possible quality, particularly in our town centres and seafront.
The council need to make Hastings an attractive and desirable place to visit, live, and do business.
However, they must also be precise, and targeted: what’s best for Hastings Town Centre might not be best for St Helens, nor even St Leonards Town Centre. There is need to develop the character, diversity and uniqueness of every part of the borough, recognising the different needs of increasingly diverse communities. This requires bespoke tailoring and even then unpredictable changes might happen.

What the council are doing, in part, is to attract inward migration by putting the right sort of facilities in place.
I can only assume that Researchers from the University of Plymouth and the University of Hertfordshire are able or committed to working with Hastings council in order to aid in patterns and predictions for these (above) reasons.

Every council will have some sort of planning strategy, as a master plan, for example:

The Hastings Planning Strategy 2011 - 2028, adopted February 2014 ... /strategy/

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Fri Jul 26, 2019 10:07 pm
by SeasideResearcher
Dear Forum Members,

Regarding the research looking at why and how people move to Hastings, their experiences, contributions and impacts, the response so far has been great. Nearly 160 in-movers have completed the online survey, with a large number also having been interviewed.

If you haven't already, it would be much appreciated if you could complete the survey:

Also, if you are willing to be interviewed, please leave your details at the end of the survey or you may contact me directly at:

This research project is about building an evidence base on migration to seaside towns and its influence on social and economic performance, so the more responses we have, the better.
Your input is really, really appreciated!

Many thanks,
Dr Steve Jakes

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Thu Aug 29, 2019 10:03 pm
by Geoff
Did you do the survey Richard? Just intrigued how this went.

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2019 10:57 am
by Richard
No Geoff!

I dislike questionnaires/market research. 8-)

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2019 11:20 am
by Geoff
Fair enough ;)

Re: Research project on moving to Hastings

Posted: Fri Aug 30, 2019 1:42 pm
by seahermit
I have to say that my eyes also glazed over at the request to respond to a survey! My feeling is that, a lot of the time, surveys provide interesting employment for researchers and for armies of bureaucrats and the results often are revealing and informative. But they are habitually ignored and not acted upon - at the end of the day, what is in the short term expeditious, profitable (not necessarily in a monetary sense) and easy to do is what largely governs the actions of local and national authorities. Sad but that's how it seems to work.