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This month is extremely special for lovers of Rye and its environs. Guests of The George love spending a day exploring quirky Hastings (even the cynics are won over once they go there…), and this year it’s getting even better. Finally, after years of planning, the Jerwood Gallery at the Stade in Hastings opens on the 17th March. The gallery is the new home for the Jerwood’s permanent collection of British art particularly figurative and abstract works from the likes of Augustus John, Lawrence Stephen Lowry and Sir Stanley Spencer created between the First World War and the 1960s, and contemporary winners of the Jerwood Prize such as Maggie Hambling (Image © Bob Mazzer).

The space around the gallery is going to be home to a rolling programme of arts events called State Saturdays, combining local performance with appearances from internationally renowned artistic companies. On the Jerwood’s launch night we can’t wait to see the brilliant Port Isaac’s Fisherman’s Friends (pictured) and their A Cappella renderings of sea shanties; all the group have working links to the coast as fishermen, coastguards and lifeguards, and they’ve gone massive, having performed at the Royal Albert Hall and the BBC Folk Festival. Later in the summer, and to offer plenty of advance warning, choreographer Hofesh Shechter is staging a spectacular dance show on the 9th June as part of the Cultural Olympiad.

Right, Mother’s Day. Want to do something nice, a change of scene, a little gander somewhere lovely? On Sunday 18th March The George Grill is hosting a Mothering Sunday lunch which should be just the trick. The menu is a la carte and as a little preview, will feature wood-oven grilled Gambas with chilli, garlic and parsley, and Roast cod with pea, cockle and bacon veloute (see the full menu on the website). Even if you can’t stay at The George and perhaps are in London or nearby, it is now under 90 minutes by train to Rye from London St Pancras, which makes it a perfect day trip.

Fast-forward a couple of weeks, and we will be celebrating Easter in style at The George. There are a few rooms available if you’d like to stay. With the prized Romney Marsh lamb on our doorstep, you can’t get a better location for your Easter Sunday lunch. We also hear tell that the wonderful moated castle at Bodium is hosting egg hunts if you want to indulge your inner child while you are here. This is a wonderful chance to recharge the batteries and enjoy a much-needed escape. You can book online.

Finally, The George in Rye recently hosted the live, audience-attended recording of Radio 4’s The Kitchen Cabinet, best described as a foodie version of Gardener’s Question Time, and presented by Observer restaurant critic, Jay Rayner. The show was recorded in Rye Bay Scallop Week, and thanks to the wonders of iplayer, you can have a catch-up listen online and learn among other things why adding salt to boiling vegetables is a waste of time….who knew indeed?!

With Very Best Wishes
Alex & Katie Clarke

© The George in Rye - 98 High Street, Rye, East Sussex TN31 7JT T 01797 222114 E [email protected]

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