10 Things You Didn't Know About Brighton

by Native, Aug 14, 2017

Drag queens, nudity, witchcraft - there's a lot to know about our seaside city.

Brighton and Hove is a city of many identities. It's a weird and wonderful witchy town with an abundance of drag queens and vegan restaurants. It's a spiritual refuge for hippies and circus freaks. It's a must-visit seaside town that'll have you going round and round a carousel quicker than you can say "that's a fucking massive seagull." These unique qualities of the city have led to a rather interesting history. Extend your knowledge of Brighton and Hove with this selection of fascinating and bizarre facts about this haven of weirdos:

Pink Floyd debuted Dark Side Of The Moon at the Brighton Dome in 1972.

Prior to this seminal album being released, prog rock titans Pink Floyd first graced live audiences with the Dark Side of the Moon in our very own Brighton Dome in 1972. Pink Floyd were regular players at the Brighton Dome, and their first gig there was actually as support for the late, great Jimi Hendrix!

Brighton is home to Britain's oldest cinema

There's a multitude of cinemas in Brighton making it heaven for avid film fans, but none can compare to Duke of Yorks. The Duke of York's cinema was built at the cost of £3000 by actress-manager Violet Melnotte-Wyatt. It opened on 22 September 1910 and was one of Brighton's first picture palaces and also one of the first cinemas in the world.

During WWII, the Germans were told not to bomb Brighton Pavilion, as Hitler intended to keep it as his seaside home

It's unbelievable to think that this popular Brighton tourist attraction was once an idea of an idyllic seaside home that Adolf Hitler imagined living in, in a Nazi-occupied UK. That'll make you look at Brighton Pavilion in a different light for sure.

ABBA won the Eurovision Song Contest with Waterloo in 1974 at Brighton Dome which launched their career

The Dark Side of the Moon wasn't the only landmark cultural debut that the Brighton Dome has seen, 2 years after Pink Floyd played there, ABBA performed there career-launching rendition of Waterloo that won them Eurovision in 1974.

Brighton was the first location in the UK to open a nudist beach in 1979

Brighton is hella liberal and that means it got hella naked in the 70s. Brighton's naturist beach is located near volks nightclub by the abandoned seaside railway, for all your free willy-ing pleasures.

Bing Crosby's last public performance was in Brighton

As this list has established, Brighton has seen it's fair share of show-stopping debuts, but Brighton has also been graced with the last performance from Bing Crosby. The 'White Christmas' singer played his final show at the Brighton centre on October 10th 1977, only to die in Spain 4 days later.

Brighton is home to the ‘mother of modern witchcraft,' the Wiccan Doreen Valiente, who has her very own blue plaque.

International Russian, transvestite hooker Katya Zamolodchikova frequently described Brighton as a witchy town when she visited in October 2016, and who could disagree? Home to the mother of witchcraft and a supposedly high population of ghosts, a fog-laden night in Brighton will have you seeing things.

According to the 2011 census, the majority of Jedi’s in the UK, live in Brighton.

Some people comment on Brighton being an extremely windy city, but a surprisingly large amount of the city's population will have you believe it is the force.

Brighton’s Grand Hotel was built in 1864 and when it opened, had the country’s only lift outside London. In 1984 a bomb exploded in the hotel in an attempt to kill the Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher. 

The Brighton hotel bombing of 1984 was an assassination attempt of the top tier of UK government from the Irish Republican Army (IRA.) A long-delay time bomb was planted in the hotel by IRA member Patrick Magee, with the intention of killing Margaret Thatcher and her cabinet. Although Thatcher narrowly escaped injury, five people were killed including a sitting Conservative MP, and 31 were injured.

There you have it - some fun facts, some not so fun facts. All true though. Probably.

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