Brighton: Facts and Information

Here are some facts about Brighton.

  • Brighton is one of England’s most popular seaside resorts. The town has a population of about 480,000 and is located on the south coast, about 90 km south of London.
  • During the 19th century, Brighton became popular with day trippers from London, who came by train. The town also became a fashionable health resort, and bathing in seawater was widely practiced.

  • Today Brighton attracts about 8 million visitors each year.
  • It has been voted the UK’s coolest town and one of the happiest towns in the country.
  • The town has featured in books by Graham Greene, Henry James and Jane Austen. It has been featured in over 40 films, including the classic 1947 film Brighton Rock.
  • The London to Brighton veteran car run dates from 1896 and is the world’s longest running motoring event. Participating cars must have been made before 1905 and cannot go faster than 32 km per hour.
  • 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.
  • Brighton’s most famous building is the Royal Pavilion, designed to look like an Oriental palace. It was built for the Prince of Wales during the 18th century and was used as a hospital during World War I.
  • One of the most interesting areas of Brighton is the Lanes, a maze of narrow streets. This popular shopping area is well known for antiques, fashion and jewellery.
  • Brighton Pier opened in 1823 and is over 580 metres long. The pier is illuminated by 70,000 lights and the Isle of Wight can be seen from the helter skelter.
  • The town has almost 100 parks and gardens, and over 400 restaurants, more per person than anywhere except London. It also has Britain’s oldest purpose built cinema, dating from 1910.