The Roaring Twenties set to return to Bexhill

West Parade in 1923
West Parade in 1923

The man who attracted thousands of pirates to Hastings is hoping a new themed event in Bexhill can provide a similar boost for the town.

Roger Crouch organised Hastings’ hugely successful annual Pirate Day – including a Guiness World Record breaking event which saw Bexhill’s near neighbour named the Pirate Capital of the World.

Now he has his sights set on turning the clock back to Bexhill’s heyday with a Roaring Twenties event later this year.

Mr Crouch has teamed up with Rother District Council to plan the July 19 fun day which will include airborne displays by the famous Breitling Wing Walkers and other flying teams, a 1920s band, vintage fun fair, donkey rides for children, music from the Royal Navy marching band of HMS Nelson and a host of other vintage-tinged entertainment.

Speaking to the Observer earlier this week, Mr Crouch explained: “I move to Bexhill last year and wanted to do something similar to Pirate Day. “The seafront area is perfect for a 1920s event – with that backdrop we were already halfway there.

“I am really excited. The Bexhill 100 have got involved so we will have 100 vintage cars at the event which will be quite a sight.

“It should be a fantastic day for Bexhill.

“Hopefully it will attract people from outside the town as well which would be good for the town.

“Contrary to what some people think Bexhill is not just a town for old people.

“You only need to go down to the seafront on a sunny day to see people from different generations which is why we wanted to do something the entire family could come along to and enjoy.

“There should be something for everyone.”

He said he was particularly looking forward to the wing walkers – a profession which enjoyed the height of its popularity in the 1920s – and that the air displays would add something different to the day.

And, just like people were encouraged to dress as buccaneers and sea dogs for Pirates Day, Mr Crouch hopes people will get into the spirit of Roaring Twenties by going along in fancy dress.

“We have Charleston dancers on the line-up but it would be great to see lots of flapper girls and people in vintage dress.

“The day is just about celebrating Bexhill and bringing the community together for something fun.”