Hastings, city (1991 pop. 74,979) and district, East Sussex, SE England. A resort and residential city, Hastings is backed by cliffs and has a 3-mi (4.8-km) marine esplanade, parks, and bathing beaches. The site was occupied in Roman times. It was made famous by the battle of Hastings, which took place at nearby Battle on Oct. 14, 1066, between the Normans under William, duke of Normandy (later William I), and the Anglo-Saxons under Harold. The battle, one of the most celebrated in English history, was won by William's force after a single day's fighting. This was the first and most decisive victory of the Norman Conquest of England. Hastings became one of the Cinque Ports.