RYE | EAST SUSSEX Comics Outside | Not Everyone Rises. As the summer blazes, now is the time to wander on a coastal tour along the coast of Rye and there, on a fine day with the gulls wheeling, you will discover comics and stories of forgotten days, in the places where they unfolded.
Julian Hanshaw, award-winning comics creator, has just finished installing the last of his Outside Comics in and around Rye, East Sussex, England.
“I have taken historical moments that have occurred on a stretch of beach in East Sussex which is very dear to me, as it’s minutes from my house and somewhere I walk regularly.”
“This stretch of coast has had a tumultuous history, each event having been made up of small, personal vignettes and it is these that I have depicted in site specific comics located on or near where the event took place. Stories of love and loss all connected to and by the sea.”
Comics Outdoors | Not Everyone Rises by Julian Hanshaw
The permanent site-specific Outside Comics installations are located at five sites. At each location you will find one of the five two-page comics displayed on a plinth.
Tickets To The Opera
A dead German pilot is brought back to Rye having crashed in Camber Sands. In his pocket two tickets are found in his top pocket for the opera that evening in Paris. A woman waits outside the venue in Paris unaware of his fate.
1 Camber Sands
Located at Rye Harbour looking at Camber Sands where a local ambulance woman in WW2 drove through a mine field to a downed German Pilot.
2 Rye Harbour
Located on the edge of Rye Harbour on a ‘Pill Box’ looking towards Dungeness where an American airman John Paul Merton came down and perished when his bomber crashed during WW2.
This panel tells the story of an American pilot who, while fighting with the RAF, his plane came down in the channel. His body slipped over the side of the inflatable by his crew after passing away in their arms.
Lost At Sea
At this site in 1928, 17 men, fathers, sons and brothers, launched their lifeboat into violent seas but perished going to the aid if a ship in distress. Just as they left the recall flare was sent up. But too late. A whole fishing village decimated.
3 Mary Stanford Life Boat Station
Standing next to the historic Mary Stanford Life Boat station this comic looks at the events that lead to 17 members of a RNLI lifeboat perishing when they set out to rescue a liner in distress.
4 Winchelsea Town
This is the tale of K Forbes Dunlop who threw her red shoe to a solider who was passing through Winchelsea town on the way to the Boer War.
The town filmed the story when they saw the comics and got Donald Sinden (who lived locally) involved and who acted in the production.
The Red Shoes
As a battalion marched through Winchelsea Town on their way to Dover to board a troop ship bound for the Boar War, a small girl, K Forbes Dunlop, carried away with the patriotic excitement removed one of her red shoes and threw it at the troops. A solider plucked it out of the, air claiming it will be his lucky charm. A girls shoe to ward off lead and steel in a foreign land.
This panel dealing with the possible invasion in WW2 as seen through a child’s eyes, stands over looking Rye Bay. The proposed location for the invasion of the UK between Dungeness and Pett Level using the gentle sloping beaches.
5 Fire Hills, Hastings Country Park
Over looking Rye Bay this page of comics deals with the proposed plans and defences constructed by the Allies for the impending invasion by the German Army in WW2.
Cape Observer Comica Graphic Short Story Prize Winner
Julian Hanshaw’s Sand Dunes and Sonic Booms won Graphic Short Story Prize in 2008. The work shares many similarities to this project.
Sand Dunes and Sonic Booms was inspired by the Denge Sound Mirrors, some 5 miles away from Rye.
Both projects inspired by the history of the coast, often the defensive front line from the rest of the UK. A coast shaped by the tide and political instability.
Comics Outdoors! Not Everyone Rises is a site specific comics project funded by The National Heritage.
Photograph by Julian Hanshaw
How To Get There
To Rye from London by Train
Trains depart from St Pancras (High Speed Link) with one change at Ashford International frequent direct trains then run from Ashford to Rye.
Total travel time from London-just over an hour.
Rye can also be reached by rail from Brighton in just over an hour.
To Rye from London by Vehicle
The main road serving 1066 Country from the London area is the A21 which is linked to the M25 around London.
The fastest route into 1066 Country from the Channel Tunnel and Ferry Ports is via the M20 towards Ashford, then the A2070 via Brenzett towards Rye.
The coastal road is the A259 which serves Pevensey, Bexhill, Hastings and Rye and links 1066 Country with the ferry ports and Channel Tunnel.
How to get to the location from Rye?
Once in Rye the beach sites can be reached either by public transport to Rye Harbour or a 15-minute cycle ride (with cycle lanes) or 35-minute walk or a 5-min car ride.
The Winchelsea site can be reached by bus. Ten minutes from Rye, 5-minute car ride, 55-minute walk or a 35-minute cycle ride.
The Fire Hills site is a 20-minute bus ride or a 10-minute car ride from Rye.
At Protein in London on 27 August 2016.
Julian Hanshaw and Krent Able launch a comic, published by Badtwin.
At Gosh! Comics, London on 5 October 2016
Julian Hanshaw will be in conversation with Jennifer Hayden about her graphic novel “Story Of My Tits”, published by Top Shelf).