This article is part of a new series to document the lives of commuters from Hastings (and the wider area) to London. The interviewees will remain anonymous for their own security.
One local entrepreneur, based in the Westhill area of Hastings started a software company in London and has successfully expanded it with additional staff now based in Newcastle and Athens. According to Mr Businessman, it is very possible to direct UK and international business from Hastings.
The owner says he is looking forward to the shorter journey time offered by the potential HS1 service, but it is clear that being based in Hastings has not been a barrier to business success.
“I have a choice of trains to London, although I prefer the direct train to Cannon Street because changing at Ashford means I will generally need to stand until St Pancras,” Mr Businessman said.
He added: “Even though the Cannon Street service is always late at least I have the comfort of a desk and my ipad to watch catch-up TV.”
The ticket costs about £122 for the weekly Cannon Street service and an extra £30 or so for the “high speed” connection at Ashford.
An alternative is to take the “slow” train in the morning and upgrade for an extra £6.50 (or £6 for day return upgrade) in the evening to get home slightly earlier or in a shorter journey time. The evening service our case study subject uses is the 1850 from St Pancras to Ashford that arrives in Hastings at 2015. The alternative train with no change is the Cannon Street service at 1828 that arrives in Hastings at 2010.
“Although it is a long journey it is well worth it, Hastings is an amazing place and after the hustle and bustle of the week’s work it is great to relax here for the weekend,” he said.
“Not to mention the added benefit: for the price of our two bed flat in Willesden Green we got a five bed house in Hastings with change left over!”