During a walk around Brighton today, we found ourselves cutting from Western Road down to the seafront using a roundabout route. We discovered Queensbury Mews, by the Metropole and a hidden Brighton.
Boo and I made a deal in town today while her elder sister was at a birthday party. We would do something she wanted to do, then something I wanted to do. At that point the sun was shining, I was desperate for a smartphone photo walk, one of my favourite things to do. She was desperate to get rid of the remaining £13 of her Christmas money. So we visiting the usual kid shopping haunts; Tiger, Smiggle then McDonald’s to pick up a Lego Batman mask (as we loved the movie so much).
Then it was my turn. The sun had gone in, so instead of trying to capture sunny skies over Brighton from the pier, we discovered some of the streets. I challenged Boo to find me interesting things to photograph, interesting details on buildings. I’ve noticed that a 5-year old’s eye picks out very different things to our adult observations, often picking up details our brains skim over.
As we wound our way between the squares and back streets from Western Road to the seafront, we walked along Queensbury Mews. Sure enough Boo spotted the French Protestant Church of Brighton before I did. A small, quaint red-brick church, building in 1887 (consecrated in 1888 according to Wikipedia), we were drawn to the dedication stones on the outside of the building (and the french, as I speak it fluently). It was clear to me, it was now a private residence and a bit of digging online showed the 3-bedroom property on the market for just over £1m in 2013. Not surprising given the quiet but prime location.
Opposite the church is The Queensbury Arms, Brighton’s smallest pub. We didn’t go in, it didn’t look particularly child-friendly, but looking at pictures on Facebook its tiny bar areas wrapped around a very traditional looking bar. Just my kind of pub normally! It was formerly known as ‘Hole In The Wall’, indicated the blue plaque mounted on the outside wall, and that’s about as much as I can find out. There are some old photos on My Brighton and Hove in its various guises over the years. If anyone knows more about the history, I would love to hear!
I found a map of Brighton’s blue plaques while researching our finds today, which is definitely going on the list of ‘things to do’ with the kids.
Here’s some more highlights from our Hidden Brighton impromptu tour today.