Kate Jordan argues that prize winning Hastings Pier is a tangible glimpse of an optimistic future where local communities and councils collaborate with the best designers to produce a new kind of heritage, relevant to our time.
If the Stirling Prize is a barometer of prevailing winds in architecture then last year’s winner, Hastings Pier, suggests a sober outlook. This stark, timber structure, designed to replace the original Victorian pier, which was destroyed by fire in 2010, is far cry from the ‘starchitect’ designed winners of previous years. Indeed, it would be hard to find more contrasting buildings than Hastings Pier and Foster's ‘Gherkin’ which picked up the prize in 2004. If the high production values of early 2000’s prize-winners trumpeted economic confidence and rejoiced in cutting-edge technology, what does the decidedly low-tech, plain-speaking Hastings Pier tell us about the current climate? And what does it say about the changing role of the architect?
...continue reading "Hastings Pier: so much more than a disappointed bridge*"
Toads Hole Valley is by far the largest urban fringe site identified for development in the City Plan. The Council has recently published a “Supplementary Planning Document” for the site. This sets out in more detail how they see its development.
The arrival of St Congar's masterplan
One of the challenges of a site as large as Toads Hole Valley is ensuring development is coherent rather than piecemeal. This now looks more likely with the recent arrival on the scene of development company St Congar. They intend to work in conjunction with the landowners on a masterplan. They will not undertake development themselves but instead split the site into parcels of land for development by different investors.
...continue reading "Toads Hole Valley: recent consultation"
Big changes are afoot in and around Brighton Square in the heart of the Lanes. We've written about Brighton Square before - plans have now developed further. ...continue reading "Brighton Square and Hanington’s Lane"
Sadly, Amex House in Edward Street, Brighton is no more. Demolition is now complete and the site is surrounded with hoardings.
The Regency Society campaigned for Amex House to survive as one of the best post-war 20th centre buildings in the city without success. We liked the look of the building and the way it was set back from the road, creating a pleasant open space in what is otherwise a lacklustre streetscape.
The new American Express building, which had been hiding modestly behind the old one, is now partly visible above the hoardings. But it won’t be for long if the planners and developers get their way.
...continue reading "New plans for Edward Street"
We need your help with our next project!
The James Gray Collection contains over 7,000 historic photographs. It is the most heavily used service the Regency Society provides. The JGC is a unique resource of historic pictures of the whole of Brighton and Hove. We are fortunate to have it.
However, The James Gray Collection website is now very out of date. It is hard to understand and browse. Many captions are now dated. It is also not suitable for use on modern tablets and phones.
How you can help
We want to give it a new lease of life with a new site. To do this, we need help from a lot of people who know and care about Brighton and Hove and are willing to help update the information about the images. We need help finding all the places in the photographs and recording what is there now. We also need help with other tasks. If you are interested in the project but not sure if working on updating the information is for you - don't be put off!
...continue reading "A new site for the James Gray Collection"
The Regency Society is delighted to be publishing Chroniclers of Brighton by Andy Grant and Steve Myall to coincide with the launch of our website of historic prints of Brighton and Hove. The new site is based on the private collections of members of the Society of Brighton Print Collectors. Read more about the new website here.
All proceeds from the sale of this book will go to the Regency Society, enabling us to fund more projects directly related to the heritage of Brighton and Hove.
The price of this hardback book, edited by RS trustee David Fisher, is £20 (plus postage and packing). You can order a copy at the bottom of this page.
...continue reading "Victorian Chroniclers of Brighton: a new Regency Society publication"
The Pavilion Tea House in Hove Park is much loved by locals, particularly when the sun is shining, and you can sit outside. However, this pleasant building is no longer large enough to cope with the all-year-round business it now attracts. The kitchen is cramped, there are no toilets or disabled facilities and the inside seating is limited.
...continue reading "A new tea house for Hove Park?"