Regency Square conservation area

Please note that this text is an extract from a reference work written in 1990.  As a result, some of the content may not reflect recent research, changes and events.

This outstanding conservation area, which stretches westwards from the Grand Hotel to the borough boundary, was developed principally in the 1810s and ’20s, and contains some of the finest examples of Brighton’s famous Regency architecture. However, the district of around 2,500 people now has many housing problems with its many multiply-occupied houses and bed-sits. The streets of particular interest in the area are detailed below, but see also “Bedford Hotel“, “Grand Hotel“, “King’s Road“, “Lower Esplanade“, “Metropole“, “Norfolk Hotel“, “West Pier“, and “Western Road“.

b) BEDFORD SQUARE: The construction of this, the earliest of Brighton’s squares, was commenced in about 1801. By 1814 twelve houses had been erected, and Bedford Square was completed in 1818 with forty-two houses; nos.1-3, with fluted Ionic pillars and verandahs, are now numbered 148-146 King’s Road, and nos.40-42 are 145-143 King’s Road, The Brighton Hotel. Designed in the main with bows, ironwork balconies and verandahs, nos.1-16, 21-26, 27-31 (the most distinguished) and 32-39 are all listed buildings; many are decorated with pilasters but have no capitals. Most of the houses were let to visitors, but no.3 was occupied for several years from 1823 by the landscape-gardener Henry Phillips, the man responsible for the Kemp Town enclosures. The Bedford Square garden covers 0.45 of an acre and became corporation property in May 1887 following the 1884 Brighton Improvement Act.

Any numerical cross-references in the text above refer to resources in the Sources and Bibliography section of the Encyclopaedia of Brighton by Tim Carder.

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