Keane fans international pilgrimage to Strangeland

Keane in Bexhill
Keane in Bexhill

KEANE fans from across the globe are planning a huge pilgrimage to Battle and Bexhill in order to follow in the footsteps of their musical heroes.

Fans from as far away as Australia and Japan are planning to make the epic journey in 2015 to follow the Keane Trail around 1066 Country.

The Keane Trail is a geographical tour of the Battle band’s hit Strangeland, taking in places name checked on the album.

Fan Jolien Bakker, from Apeldoorn in The Netherlands, is organising the event.

She said: “The album artwork for Keane’s latest album Strangeland was photographed at Bexhill-on-the-Sea, a place full of cherished childhood memories for most of the members of Keane. The song Sovereign Light Café, which essentially is a loving tribute to the area, has piqued a lot of interest from fans worldwide. It’s now a magical place many fans want to visit to experience for themselves.

“We all just started talking and the date for August 2015 was set to meet at the Sovereign Light Café. We felt that two years would give everyone enough time to save up money for the trip, arrange visas and organise.”

Jolien started a Facebook group to co-ordinate the event, which has 281 members from as far away as Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Japan, Spain, US, Canada and Portugal.

Jolien added: “I myself have attended to two previous Keane fan meet ups in Battle and Bexhill, but those were a lot smaller than the one we are planning now, with about 15 people. We were inspired to visit Mansers Shaw, where the Somewhere Only We Know video was shot, Battle Abbey and the battle grounds as well as all the places made famous both by the cover of Strangeland and lyrics of Sovereign Light Café.

“We’re so pleased there is now an official tribute to all the most special Keane related places around Battle, Bexhill and Hastings. We are definitely going to make sure the Keane Trail is part of our schedule. Overall, it will be a dream come true to meet Keane fans from all over the world, at a place that means so much to us all!”

Liz Honey, a member of The Battle Marketing Group which created the Keane Trail, said: “From interacting with the fans on social media it’s evident that the Battle and Bexhill area means a great deal to them all, particularly since the release of the Strangeland album last year.

“I worked with Jane Ellis of 1066 Country Marketing and Oliver Campion of Webd.co.uk as the core team who created the site and, as Keane fans ourselves, it’s rewarding to see such a positive response from the very people we created it for.

“This latest news of an international meet-up in August 2015 is the icing on the cake. This positive reaction to the Keane Trail is also good news for the area of course, with confirmed bookings already being reported at local accommodation providers for smaller scale tours during 2013.”