In November, councillors on the economic development and culture committee released for public consultation, a 50-page document, “Old Town Character Statement” which details the Old Town area’s history and heritage assets. Brighton residents and businesses were asked to get involved in ensuring Brighton’s historic heart is protected and enhanced, as the document and survey will serve as an assessment of what is important about the area, to guide future planning policies and decisions. Continue reading Brighton Old Town
Shops seem to open and close with alarming regularity in Brighton, especially the small independent traders, particularly record shops. Despite this, at least one name has remained throughout the economic ups and downs. The Record Album, the oldest record shop in Brighton, was established in 1948 and is still going strong today with the current proprietor, Mr George Ginn. He’s been dealing in records since the late 1950s, when he started buying records for himself and for his friends. He got the opportunity to take over the shop lease in the 1960s; he began to specialise in his main love, film and theatrical soundtracks, soon afterwards. However, Mr Ginn insists that his professional involvement in the subject and indeed, his presence in Brighton, is more or less accidental. Continue reading The Record Album
The final instalment of life in the Seven Dials by Tony Hill…
Because Dad had to be able to drive his lorry to the far corners of Sussex to put injured horses and cows out of their misery, he had a virtually unlimited supplementary petrol ration. This allowed him to be the only Brighton greengrocer who was able to deliver to the big houses around Dyke Road Avenue and the back of Hove, and boosted his trade considerably. You chose your own price in the Dials Vegetable Market. If, for example, he had peas that could be sold at seven pence a pound, he would split the batch into two piles on opposite sides of the shop, one pile labelled Peas 6d lb, the other marked Best Peas 8d lb. Three out of four ladies chose the dearer ones! This made more profit for Dad, saved money for the really poor, of whom there were quite a few, and made the other customers feel they were living well, so everybody was happy. Continue reading The Dials Vegetable Market
In the heart of Brighton’s Old Town, in the middle of Middle Street is a building of national importance. You may never have noticed the Hippodrome. It has been dark since 2007 after 32 years as a bingo hall. But before that, from 1901 to 1965, it was the Sussex Coast’s top variety theatre.
The Hippodrome was designed by the greatest theatre architect of the time, Frank Matcham. It is a performance space – unique in the UK – that not only has a classic proscenium stage but still has its circular seating arrangement. It is perfect for anything from variety shows, big West End musicals, ballet, dance and opera to thrust-stage, theatre-in-the-round, and ‘roundhouse’ productions like Cirque du Soleil. Brighton’s Albert Hall!