Coastal Culture Trail, East Sussex

[vimeo 66601789 w=460 h=259]

The De La Warr Pavilion, Jerwood Gallery, and Towner – three of the most exciting visual arts galleries in the UK – have joined forces to create a cultural trail which promises a fabulous weekend of great art, great food and the great outdoors. The three award-winning galleries share a stunning 20 mile stretch of East Sussex coastline, which – less than 90 minutes from London – is the perfect destination for a weekend getaway.

The Coastal Culture Trail will be launched on the weekend of 7-9 June 2013, during which there will be a variety of special events taking place across the three galleries. Below is a suggested itinerary; however, visitors are encouraged to create their own itineraries from the ‘What’s On?’ section.

Friday 7 June

Spend the evening at the Jerwood Gallery, Hastings for a night of art and gourmet food. Exclusive after-hours access to the galleries will allow visitors to browse the permanent collection of 20th and 21st century British art as well as our temporary exhibition of figurative works by the acclaimed 20th century British artist William Scott RA (1913-1989), before enjoying a gourmet five course meal in the first floor café, overlooking Hastings’ fishing beach. The supper will be freshly prepared by Webbe’s chefs from fish caught locally by Hastings’ famous beach launched fleet.

Saturday 8 June

Enjoy wandering the historic streets of Hastings’ picturesque Old Town. There are a number of excellent quirky boutiques and cafés and the antique shops are a great place to pick up a bargain. Test your skills on one of the crazy golf courses on the seafront or take Hastings funicular railway to the East Hill and enjoy the views over the town and sea.

From Hastings you can take a 10 minute train journey to Bexhill. Alternatively, rent a bike and enjoy the coastal cycle route, which runs from Hastings to Bexhill.

Join a tour around the Grade One listed Modernist De La Warr Pavilion built in 1935 and restored in 2005. After a bite to eat in the De La Warr Pavilion’s café, perhaps sitting on the balconies overlooking the sea, explore the exhibition of work by Australian artist Shaun Gladwell including a skate ramp on the roof! Turn your hand to creating your own fanzine in De La Warr’s fanzine workshop, take a walk on Bexhill’s new contemporary sea-front or browse the independent shops for vintage bargains and gifts. In the evening you can enjoy a night of comedy at the Pavilion with comedian Henning Wehn.

Sunday 9 June

Take the short train journey to Eastbourne (15 minutes from Bexhill or 25 minutes from Hastings;) and experience Towner’s mix of traditional and cutting edge contemporary art. Don’t miss the major exhibition of Fiona Rae, one of the leading painters of the YBA generation. Then head to the Collection Gallery for a display of People and Portraits drawn from Towner’s renowned collection of nearly 5,000 historic, modern and contemporary works – featuring artists such as Christopher Wood, Edward Bawden and David Bomberg. Take an exclusive peek behind the scenes with a Towner Collection Store Tour – offered free for the first time, only to participants on the Coastal Culture Trail.

Towner sits at the foot of the South Downs National Park so, after taking in the striking views of the Downs from Towner’s café bar, why not round off the weekend with a walk in some of the South’s most beautiful countryside? From Eastbourne it is a short journey to Beachy Head, the Long Man of Wilmington and the Cuckmere Valley – areas of outstanding natural beauty which have inspired many of Britain’s most celebrated artists!

… Alternatively, you could do the trail in reverse from Eastbourne to Hastings via Bexhill – the choice of how to explore the world class art along this beautiful stretch of Sussex coastline is yours!

What’s On?

Sean Gladwell Cycles of Radical Will 2 Feb 2013- 23 Jun 2013 10am – 6pm, free De La Warr Pavilion This is the Australian artist’s largest solo show in the UK to date and features films and sculptures which look at the creative conflict between cultural practices, traditions and sub-cultures.  For this show, he has looked at the region’s subcultures of motorcyclists, Jack-In-The- Green and BMX-ers and his work includes a motorcycle embedded into a wall and a BMS/skate ramp on the roof.
People and Portraits 23 March – 6 October Towner A Towner Collection display featuring Christopher Wood, Edward Bawden, David Bomberg, Ugo Rondinone and many more. Paintings, photography and sculpture tease out a thread of connections between artists, subjects, and those who commissioned the portrait or donated it to the collection.
William Scott:
Divided Figure
27 April – 10 July Jerwood Gallery Divided Figure celebrates the centenary of the birth of William Scott (1913-1989) one of the leading and most influential British artists of the 20th century. The exhibition focuses on Scott’s figure works made between 1954-1973 when he was at the height of his career and investigates Scott’s exploration of the divide between abstraction and figuration.
Fiona Rae: Maybe you can live on the moon in the next century 27 April -23 June Towner Post-2000 and new works from one of the leading painters of the YBA generation, recently described by the Guardian as “a Jackson Pollock for the digital age”. Rae draws her influences from a range of sources including graphic novels, Japanese anime and the painterly splashes and drips of Abstract Expressionism.
Annual Schools and Colleges Exhibition 2013 11 May – 9 June Towner Over 1,000 children and young people have been inspired by People and Portraits to create their own original portraits. Step into our portrait booth, discover the stories behind the golden frames and become the star of your own Towner Collection painting!
The Chapman Brothers 17 May – 10 July Jerwood Gallery Turner Prize nominated artists the Chapman Brothers explore the weird and wonderful in an exhibition of their drawings.
‘Hastings Catch’ Gourmet Dinner Friday 7 June 6.30pm for 7.30 pm dinner, £40  per head (includes aperitif, five course dinner and gallery admission) Jerwood Gallery Special after-hours access to the galleries will allow you to browse the collection of 20th and 21st century British art and the exhibition of work by acclaimed 20th century British artist William Scott (1913-1989), before enjoying a five course gourmet meal in the first floor café, overlooking Hastings fishing beach.The supper will be prepared by Webbe’s chefs from fish caught locally by Hastings’ famous beach launched fleet.
Collection Store Tours Saturday 8 June & Sunday 9 June 11.30am – FREE if you quote Coastal Culture Trail when booking by phone (usually £5/£4 concession) Towner Towner is home to an internationally renowned collection of almost 5,000 historic, modern and contemporary works. This is a unique opportunity to view the Towner Collection behind the scenes, and learn about how an art collection is stored and conserved.
Building Tour Saturday 8 June 12 noon, free De la Warr Pavilion Enjoy a tour of the De La Warr Pavilion and learn the stories behind the creation and restoration of this much loved and internationally important building
Fanzine Workshop with Tristan Manco Saturday 8 June 1-4pm, free De la Warr Pavilion Celebrate your own culture, passions and obsessions through art and design through this fanzine workshop. With an emphasis on DIY culture, you will explore handmade techniques to produce your own custom fanzine – such as, hand-lettering, hand drawing, stenciling, photocopying, cut-out letters, letterpress, stickers, stencils and magazine collage.
Expert’s talk: Sarah Brown on Fiona Rae Saturday 8 June 2pm, £5/£4 concession Towner An introduction to Fiona Rae’s work by the Curator of Exhibitions at Leeds Art Gallery. Sarah will illuminate Fiona’s practice within the context of contemporary painting and the broader history of painting.
Free Family Drop-in Saturday 8 & Sunday 9 June, free Towner Art materials and family learning booklets are available every weekend and daily during school holidays. Families are invited to get creative and make some art of their own, inspired by the exhibitions on show!
Every Picture Tells a Story Film Screening Saturday 8 & Sunday 9 June, 11.30am & 2.30pm, free on admission Jerwood Gallery A touching and personal biography of the life of William Scott told by his son, Academy Award-winning filmmaker, James Scott.
Children’s Trail Saturday 8 & Sunday 9 June, free on admission Jerwood Gallery Our children’s trail uses drawing and problem solving to help children take a closer look at the works in our exhibition and collection.
Sussex Talks Saturday 8 & Sunday 9 June, 2pm, free on admission Jerwood Gallery Find out more about the Jerwood Collection in our series of talks and tours. The weekend of the 8/9 of June will have a special focus on works in the Jerwood Collection inspired by Sussex.
Henning Wehn Saturday 8 June 8pm, tickets £11.50 – £12.50 De la Warr Pavilion (auditorium) This very funny German comedian performs for the first time in Bexhill. Recent TV and radio appearances include QI (BBC2), Dave’s One Night Stand (Dave), The Unbelievable Truth and The Now Show (BBC Radio 4), Fighting Talk (BBC Five Live) and his own six part BBC Radio2 series Henning Knows Best.  ‘Side-splittingly funny’ (The Times)
Architectural Tour Sunday 9 June 2pm (TBC), free on admission Jerwood Gallery Find out more about the award-winning architecture of the Jerwood Gallery, designed by HAT Projects in this special free building tour.

Where to Eat


De La Warr Pavilion Café Bar
Trattoria Italiana


Towner Café Bar is offering ‘buy one get one free’ on coffee, tea or any hot drink purchased over the weekend – enjoy on our balcony with views over the Downs!

Visit Grand Bocca, Eastbourne’s newest and hottest foodie destination, for dinner on Friday or Saturday evening – they are offering a free glass of their finest house fizz per person for every party to quote ‘Coastal Culture Trail’ when booking (available from 7-8 June 2013 inclusive, subject to availability – see Towner website for terms & conditions)


Webbe’s at Jerwood – Jerwood Gallery’s café serves a range dishes, perfect for lunch or afternoon tea. The café’s supper clubs offer gourmet evening meals in the setting of the gallery, using the best local produce.

Webbe’s Rock-a-Nore – Just across the road to the Jerwood Gallery, this restaurant specialises in excellent and locally caught seafood.

There are a number of other great cafés and restaurants in Hastings Old Town, offering a wide variety of food, from fish and chips to fine dining.

Where to Stay


Buenoes Aires B&B

Coast B&B –

Other lovely B&Bs can be found at


The Devonshire Park Hotel is kindly offering 20% off accommodation if you quote ‘Coastal Culture Trail’ when booking (see Towner website for terms & conditions) –

The Big Sleep –

Cavendish Hotel –

The Da Vinci Art Hotel –

The Grand –


Hastings House – (5% discount on Friday night stays and 10% discount on two night stay when quoting Coastal Culture Trail on booking. Please note that Hastings House do not take one night bookings for Saturday nights.)

The Old Rectory

Swan House – (10% discount when quoting Coastal Culture Trail on booking.)

The White Rock Hotel (10% discount when quoting Coastal Culture Trail on booking)

Zanzibar –

Further information

Notes to Editors:

De La Warr

The Grade One Listed, Modernist De La Warr Pavilion is a centre for the contemporary arts which stands proudly overlooking Bexhill’s new seafront. Built in 1935 and restored in 2005, it has exhibitions in two galleries, top music and comedy acts and film programme in the auditorium , a café and bar with outside balconies and magnificent sea views, a large flat roof open-air space for exhibitions and events, and a shop selling designer accessories and gifts. Artists who have exhibited include Jeremy Deller, Antony Gormley, Richard Wilson and Andy Warhol and recent headline acts include Eddie Izzard, Keane, Patti Smith and Vampire Weekend . The Pavilion and its exhibitions are open 364 days a year, free to enter and accessible to all, with a busy learning programme for all ages to participate in. The Pavilion receives generous support from Arts Council England and Rother District Council.

Jerwood Gallery

The award winning Jerwood Gallery opened in March 2012. Designed by the young architectural practice HAT Projects, the Gallery houses the Jerwood Collection of 20th and 21st century art, along with a changing contemporary exhibitions programme. Previous exhibitions have included: a significant retrospective of painting and drawings by Rose Wylie: Big Boys Sit in the Front; Gary Hume: Flashback; Gillian Ayres: Paintings from the 50s; the Jerwood Drawing Prize 2012; and Knock Knock: Seven Artists in Hastings.

The Jerwood Collection features over 200 works of art by celebrated artists from the 20th century such as Sir Stanley Spencer RA, Lawrence Stephen Lowry RA, and Augustus John RA, alongside works from winners of the Jerwood Painting Prize such as Craigie Aitchison, RA, Maggi Hambling, Patrick Caulfield, RA and Prunella Clough.

The gallery is open Tuesday-Friday and bank holiday Mondays from 11 am – 5 pm, Saturday and Sunday 11 am – 6 pm. Admission is £7 for adults, children (5-16 years) £3.50, Concessions: £5.


Towner, Eastbourne’s award-winning new gallery which opened in April 2009, is the contemporary art museum for South East England. With 1,250 m2 of display space, Towner boasts the largest gallery space in the South East region. Towner presents a unique programme of major exhibitions of contemporary and historic visual art alongside displays from the internationally renowned, 4000-strong Towner Collection.

The Towner Collection is best known for its modern British art – including the largest and most significant body of work by Eric Ravilious (1903-1942) – and a growing collection of international contemporary art.

Admission to Towner is free. There is also a gift shop and café bar, with stunning views over the South Downs. Summer opening hours are Tuesday – Sunday, and Bank Holiday Mondays, 10am – 6pm.

Towner is funded by Eastbourne Borough Council and Arts Council England