ROOT 1066 to mark pivotal date in history

New Arts Festival SUS-151125-152506001
New Arts Festival SUS-151125-152506001

A new contemporary arts festival has been launched to mark the 950th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.

The ROOT 1066 International Festival crosses borders and promises to bring ‘innovative and fresh’ perspectives on the history and legacy of 1066 from some of the best artists working in Britain and France today.

ROOT 1066 will be composed of ‘spectacular’ indoor and outdoor events across 1066 Country staged by internationally renowned artists and companies.

Glyndebourne Opera, Chris Levine, Wildworks Theatre, Marcus Harvey and Turner Prize short-listed Fiona Banner and many more will present specially-commissioned works, exhibitions and shows.

Announcing the festival, Peter Chowney, leader of Hastings Borough Council said:“The impact of the Norman Conquest on our country cannot be underestimated; it laid down the bedrock of English language and culture.

“That’s why we have called the festival ROOT 1066.

“It demonstrates just how diverse we are as a nation, how our modern culture has been shaped by centuries of invasion, immigration and settlement.

“The main festival period will run throughout September, 2016, right up to the week of the anniversary itself, on October 14.

“However, we will be running events and activities in the run up to ROOT 1066 and beyond, to build its profile and create something that lasts beyond the festival year.”

He added: “We will also be hosting a series of major exhibitions in the area, courtesy of our partner venues, Jerwood Gallery, De La Warr Pavilion and Hastings Museum and Art Gallery.

“But ROOT 1066 will not only act as a stage for works by established artists and performers, it will also create a spotlight for local community groups, schools and colleges.”

Jerwood Gallery is putting on a major exhibition of the celebrated English artist and painter, Marcus Harvey.

Part of the Young British Artists movement, Harvey has family links with the town and his recent work reflects certain aspects of 1066 history, its naval history – both heroes and villains – along with the topography of the coast and surrounding landscape.

The exhibition will be the largest public exposure of his work to date.

Paying homage to British Museum director Neil MacGregor’s ground-breaking series for BBC Radio 4, A History of the World in 100 Objects, Hastings Museum and Art Gallery aims to tell The Story of Hastings in 66 Objects.

The public will be able to vote for their favourite item.

ROOT 1066 International Festival aims to put the national spotlight back on Hastings and 1066 Country, through high quality arts and culture.

It has been funded by Hastings Borough Council and Arts Council England.

For the latest news and information go to, like the Facebook page ‘ROOT1066’ or follow ‘ROOT1066’ on Twitter.

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