I particularly appreciate these photographs because they clearly show how very active the scene typically was on a fine summer’s day. The pictures seem to have been taken — wonderfully — from a rowing boat.
I hope you enjoy them.
The volume of crowds shown clearly
The first shows the bathing station close at hand : a standard pier-end facility of the era, often forgotten about these days. That of the West Pier was at the N.E. corner of the pier head. The second photo shows the landing stage which is followed on south of the bathing station. The tide is high. Noticeable is the ornate roof of one of the kiosks. There’s the distant glimpse of a paddle steamer perhaps being prepared to transfer passengers. In both of these pictures, the beautiful line of serpent lamps and the sheer volume of crowds feature rather nicely.
A sight long consigned to the past
There is something magnificent and evocative about the third view. This is the western side of the pier head, the turrets of the beautiful pavilion being to the left ; the flag of the United States flies alongside our own. People view the paddle steamer from the balcony of the pavilion, possibly suggesting this picture was taken a little before the building’s conversion to a theatre. Just visible is Maynard’s kiosk.
Can you help?
If you can help with identification, your comments are welcomed. Features of the paddle steamer are discernible. Can anyone name it? Possibly a vessel of the Brighton, Worthing & South Coast Steamship Company, P. & A. Campbell or some other — many steamers having visited Brighton’s piers — I realise this might be asking too much !