Tag Archives: local history

The Whistler – February 2018

This image is by Will Bradley, a contemporary of Aubrey Beardsley
            Image by Will Bradley, a contemporary of Aubrey Beardsley

Looking Forward

This year there is much to look forward to at West Hill Hall. Our monthly Quiz Nights are as popular as ever  and we are really grateful to our ever growing band of Quiz setters. It’s a really rollicking evening of fun and fiendish questions, as well as being a great way of meeting local residents and raising money to help us look after the Hall.

Our series of local history talks continue in May and October.

In this issue we also look forward to commemorating 120 years since the death of West Hill local boy, Aubrey Beardsley, and remembering it is 100 years since the first steps to Women’s Suffrage in the UK. It turned out to be one small step for womankind – still a long way to go.

Beardsley 120: The Death of Pierrot

In 2018 a series of events will commemorate 120 years since the death of Brighton-born artist Aubrey Beardsley. The events are co-ordinated by Alexia Lazou (aka Victorians Valued), including tours and talks. Details of the programme are on beardsley120.eventbrite.co.uk. Some of the events are free entry/donations and some associated events have an admission charge. For further information please see website or email: victoriansvalued@gmail.com

Bite-Size Museum Talk 
Aubrey Beardsley: 120 Years After The Death of Pierrot

Tuesday 27 March 12pm, Brighton Museum. Free with admission, members and residents free.

Brighton-born artist Aubrey Beardsley died in 1898 at the tragically early age of twenty five. Come and discover more about him, see two of his original drawings close up, and hear about some of the ways he has been commemorated during the 120 years since his untimely death. With Alexia Lazou, Collections Assistant.

See more details at https://tinyurl.com/y785wy6c

Artichoke Arts

The Artichoke Artgroup is running a children’s physical theatre weekly workshop in the West Hill Hall.

Physical space is a workshop that focuses on a return to the basics of theatre, without the use of make up and with neutral costume. It is based on a return to the origin, the empty space, and in evaluating our body as the first tool of creation in empty space.
We explore impulses and directions, physical gestures and their meaning. We develop the use of movement as a synthesis and as means of expression to recreate characters, situations and spaces. The company explores the environment (materials, colours, elements, sounds) and creates narratives through play where the theatrical text is created from the action.
The group is directed by the actress and teacher Florence Leon. James de Malplaquet is the sound design teacher and Solange Leon is the voice teacher.

Here’s what was said about the Artichoke Arts show Show off, first performed at West Hill Hall in July of this year.

“The performances by the children of the Artichoke Arts Group were just inspirational. They delivered their own short plays and mimes, which were dazzlingly complex, fast-paced and breathtakingly executed. The young artists’ energy, creativity and overwhelming sense of fun were evident in everything they did. How this was channelled so successfully into such a professional performance from very young people is a mystery! How do you do it, Artichoke?” Bruce Dickinson, Education Director BIMM – Brighton & Bristol Institutes of Modern Music.

“A terrific night! The kids were brilliant. It was lovely to see such confidence and commitment in them – and their execution of their devised material was amazing! Creative, funny, clever! The grown-up stuff was a gas too! I had a fun time! Bundles of charm in the event! Congratulations for a sterling job.” David Scinto, Writer & Award Winner of the British Independent Film Award & Golden Satellite Award for ‘Sexy Beast’.
For more info please visit www.artichokeartgroup.co.uk

Brunswick Westward U3A


Shared learning for pleasure, for people no longer in full-time employment
U3A stands for University of the Third Age: people who, with their youth and working life behind them, have the leisure to expand their understanding and who come together to share and pursue learning in all its forms, not for qualifications but for pleasure.

There are now more than 670 local U3As all over the country, self-managed, lifelong learning cooperatives, run entirely by volunteers. Brunswick Westward U3A is one of them, set up in 2001 originally to cover West Hove, Portslade, Hangleton and Knoll, but now, in practice, welcoming members from all over Brighton and Hove.

Members share learning and leisure experiences in a wide range of special interest groups: Drawing with Crayons, Gardens, Patchwork, French (intermediate/advanced), Spanish (elementary), Play Reading, Theatre and Film Groups, Reading Fiction, Exploring Poetry, Family History Support, Local History, History Discussion, Walks, Meditation and Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now.

We’d like to start other groups as interest arises. Groups are interactive, with members contributing from their own interests and experience. Some groups have a leader with special knowledge or skills but in many cases it’s a co-ordinator who’s just responsible for organisation. Groups meet weekly, fortnightly or monthly, usually in members’ houses; but we hire a hall for get-togethers such as our Spring Celebration.
As well as the special interest groups we have regular illustrated talks by knowledgeable speakers, and members can attend the popular regional Study Days held monthly on Saturdays at various venues across Sussex.

Details of these are in our Brunswick Westward Newsletter and members also get a regular U3A magazine from head office. Membership is £16 a year. If you are interested in joining you would be most welcome to have tea with existing members and group co-ordinators at our open Introductory Meeting, to be held at 2pm on 11 September 2009 in the Ralli Hall, Denmark Villas, near Hove Station.

Further details from our Secretary, Dee Bartaby, tel 747565 or de@bartaby.co.uk. If you’d like to join now contact our Membership Secretary, Pat Sawyer, tel. 551425 or sawyep_7@yahoo.co.uk.

Anyone wanting information about other U3As in the Brighton area should visit www.sura.org.uk.

Memories are Made of This

Carol Simmons recalls the 1950s and 60s in and around Powis Road and West Hill…
I was born at 9a Powis Road in the front room on 4 June 1950. My first recollection of the street is when I was about 3 years old and was allowed to ride to the lamp post at the top of the street and back again on my little red trike. My childhood was very happy, kids were always playing on the Green, which in those days did not have a fence as the railings were taken away during the war or any trees in the middle as are there today, so climbing the older trees was a great pastime of mine.

No great incidents occurred apart from when a car ran away down Powis Square one day and crashed into garage next to the church and No 8. Nobody was hurt. I remember when a milk float somehow shed masses of milk bottles outside the Temple Inn in Victoria Road, now the doctors’ surgery and when the Bedford Hotel burnt down it was a spectacular view from there.

There were shops everywhere, selling anything you could possibly need. I would cut through the church yard in those days (as the West Hill Hall was not yet built) to my little boyfriend who lived in St Michael’s Place. We had to be very careful to dodge the vicar or we would get a right telling off. Sometimes my grandma would take me up Clifton Road to the Domestic Stores to get a gallon of pink paraffin for her stove. It seemed like miles away to me. It smelled so lovely inside in the winter, the oil stove would be burning in the shop and it had a lovely warm ‘paraffiny’ smell. Opposite this shop was Clifton Road Congregational Church, where I attended the Girl’s Life Brigade, later the Girl’s Brigade, until I was 18 years old. The Clifton Road College was next door, a lovely little school. Grandma would go into Dyke Road to Mr Coleman’s, the fish monger, and get two penneth of fish heads for our cats. She would boil them up and pick the fish off. Sometimes she would buy me a threepenny lucky bag from the tiny sweet shop a couple of doors away, which was a real treat for me. Later in life when I left school at 15 I went to work in the Teresa Florist next door to the sweet shop, now Blenio’s restaurant. Here are some of my “now and then” memories of shops in the area. [Interesting to see the number of greengrocers…the newly opened Grocer and Grain is keeping up a tradition – Ed]

Powis Road
#1 now an empty video shop, then Newings Greengrocer, which was particularly lovely at Christmas, with trees, holly, mistletoe hanging outside. Inside was a wooden floor and piles of fruit in the windows. Vinegar was sold out of wooden barrels, there were bunches of mint and you could always smell beetroot cooking in the back.
#2 now residential, then Trethewy/Brown grocers.
#3 now a dry cleaner, then Gray & White glaziers
#4a now derelict, then greengrocer/cakes and bread

Victoria Road
#4 now residential, then Mr Gilbert’s Chemist, who always raised his hat to my mum and me.

Dyke Road
#67 now SixtySeven gift shop, then Domestic Cash stores
#69 –71 now a dentist, then a grocer and Heidi, a knitting wool shop.
#81 now an Osteopathy clinic, then Major’s jewellers
#83 now Body Pacify, then greengrocer
#85 now Michael Paul Insurance, then Mr Coleman the fishmonger
#87=89 now Blenio restaurant, then a sweet shop and Teresa Florist
#95-97 now Tin Drum, then a Butcher and Rose Sports shop
#121 now Just Gents barbers, then Peter’s Florist (where I worked)
#106a now the Co-op, then Tesco
#104-102 now Tinkers, then Channel Cleaners and Homewards Newsagents
#98 now Ashtons chemist, then Ashtons
#92 now Italian deli, then greengrocers
#90 now Red Snapper, then Wonder Bar
#88 now Uden, then Blaker’s Butchers
#86 now Aramas, then Forfars bakers
#87 now Moorish Deli, then Marine Cash Reg
#82 now Rat & Trumpet, then the Compton Arms public house
#80 now Magic Lighting Co, then Lucille’s Hairdressers
#68-70 now Parker Plumbing, then a confectioners and cooked meat shop
#64 now Classic Cuts, then Burfoot’s greengrocer.
#99-101 now Mishon Mackay, then a launderette

99 Dyke Road
99 Dyke Road

#109 now Sobs, then Peggy’s Café
#115 now Murasaki, then a Health Care shop and the Dials Café
#119 now Jagwa salon, then tobacconist