Posted 10 October 2014 by Andrew Gardner
Did you hear about the Battle of Hastings sword that didn't sell? Sounds like the start of a corny joke but it's absolutely true. It went under the hammer recently and is believed to have been captured in the fight by Humphrey de Bohun, a relative of William the Conqueror. Clearly this Viking broadsword meant something to him as it's mentioned in his will, but it seems no one in the present day found its price worth paying. I can't quite decide whether that's sad or sensible: its private owners were looking for about £120,000 and I always wonder how you put a value on such an artefact; what makes it worth a certain amount of cold money, and is that worth more than its history, the atmosphere around it and the sheer fact that it's survived so long?
I would love to see the sword, but the nearest I'm likely to get is Hastings Week, a celebration to commemorate the anniversary of the Battle of Hastings. If you're staying in one of our Hastings holiday lets, don't miss the classic car show, National Town Criers' Championship, Battle of Hastings re-enactment and, as a grand finale, the Hastings bonfire torchlight procession - just some of the events going on from 11-19 October. I'll also be looking out for some of the Sussex apple festivals this month, though I suspect a lot of apples have been harvested a bit early this year - even the sapling I planted this spring managed to produce four tasty apples; hope the early run hasn't worn it out.
Lewes Folk Festival and Brighton Comedy Festival are also highlights of October in Sussex; for children there will be plenty of Halloween events and for those who love a challenge, the Beachy Head Marathon must be one of the toughest off-road races with its challenging route over the South Downs. There's also a 10km route if you're not ready for the full monty. Happy holidays!