|| Recorded as the tiny
fishing village of Bristelmestune in the Domesday Book in 1086,
Brighton has a very colourful history of invasion, decline, prosperity
In 1313 the town was awarded a charter by Edward II in 1313 permitting
a market to be held in Brighton every Thursday and a fair lasting
three days at the feast of St Bartholomew (24th August). During this
medieval period, the town was bounded by West Street, North Street,
East Street and the sea, and developed both as a farming and a
Life was hard in those days and in the 14th century the parish managed
to avoid paying taxes on the grounds of poverty and crop failure.
In the early 1500s Brighton was raided by the French and almost completely
destroyed by fire, although the place did not gain any national significance
for another century when in 1651 King Charles II stayed there
before escaping to France.
After this time the town fell into decline and was very nearly
destroyed by the great storms of 1703 and 1705.
Luckily Brighton was saved from being lost in history when Dr Richard
Russell arrived in 1750 and proclaimed the healing benefits of
his seawater cure.
The town received a further boost when in the early 1800s the Prince
Regent, later George IV, visited and decided to set up home at
the Royal Pavilion palace. This consequently made Brighton fashionable
with the rich and famous, and during the same period many of the town's
renowned squares and crescents were built.
However, the town did not stay popular with royalty for very long
when Queen Victoria took the throne – in fact she despised the
place so much she sold the Royal Pavilion to Brighton. During this
period major landmarks, such as the clock tower, Palace Pier and West
Pier, were built, and the London to Brighton Railway opened
The early 20th century saw more reward as the town grew in popularity
with tourists, but the with the swinging sixties came tension and
unease when rival gangs, the ‘mods’ and the ‘rockers’
battle for supremacy among Brighton’s streets.
Thankfully that craze passed with Brighton escaping relatively unscathed
and by the end of the 1970s the town had become an international conference
centre with the opening of the Brighton Centre.
By the early 90s the town had started to reinvent itself as a 'city
on the sea' and Brighton and nearby Hove officially merged
when they are made one local authority.
The dawning of the new Millennium has brought more prosperity, with
Brighton and Hove together being granted city status in 2000 –
and so the City of Brighton was born.