Ballroom Manager Lionel Stewart
Lionel Stewart was my dad and I was delighted to find references to him and the Regent Ballroom on this truly great site. I have lived in Oregon on the west coast of the United States for over 30 years but came home for a visit to Brighton this Summer. I stayed with my good friends Peter and Sandy Crowhurst in the North Laine who are involved with this and other local web sites.
Born in Poland in 1893
Lionel Stewart was born in 1893 in Poland and moved to England with his family as a young child. He spent his formative years in London and became a competitive ballroom dancer with his sister Anne. During the 1920s and 1930s, they were frequently seen gliding across the floors of the Hammersmith Palais in London, before it was bombed during the war.
Died in in Brighton in 1970
Lionel moved to Brighton and was manager of The Regent Ballroom for 32 years before he retired in 1955. As a child my parents and I lived at the Seven Dials area and then on Western Road where dad died in 1970. He was 60 when I was born so my memories of the Regent are quite distant, but I remember loving the attention given to me when my dad took me to visit as a small child. His trademarks were a cigar and his ever present contagious smile. He was known for his generosity and kindness and played to cupid to many dancers who frequented The Regent Ballroom.
A very popular personality
I still have dozens of letters sent to him during the war from troops overseas and it was easy to see he was adored by Brightonians of all ages. If anyone recognizes any of the personalities in the photos I would love to know who they are. Please contact me via email if you have more information about my dear old dad to firstname.lastname@example.org