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An outside toilet and postman's knock

George Street, Brighton: 37 is the first house
Photo by Tony Mould

Three stories high

My house at no 37 George Street  was one of three houses that were the same. Our house was three stories high and also had a basement. We had electric lights but no sockets; every thing was run off the light fitting. We did not have a bathroom or running hot water. We heated the water by boiling it up on the gas cooker. The toilet was outside in the yard; it was freezing in winter. But we had good times. We played in the street; postman’s knock, hide and seek- games of the past. It seems to be all computers and ipods now.

Remember Dan the barber?

There were two small alleyways off of George Street. I remember the one at the top of the street, the Edward Street end, which lead into Dorset Street. The other one was at the bottom end of the street; you could go in down the side of the Queen’s Arms public house and come out by Dan’s the barbers shop. The alleyway was where the back entrances were to the shops at the bottom end of George Street. There was a garage called Bakers; the family who owned it lived opposite.

Block of flats

I remember that in George Street there was a block of two storey flats that had a workshop underneath at street level. You had to go up a flight of stairs to them. If my memory serves me right they belonged to the Palace Pier Company, and people who worked on the pier lived in them. There was a Mr Holden, he was I think one of the bosses; there was another flat next door with a workshop, and a lady lived above there. She had a rather steep lot of stairs to go up. We all called her Auntie Daisy, I cannot remember her surname.

Do you remember?

Did you live in George Street? What was your house like? Do you remember any of the old shops? Maybe you live there now? If you can share your memories with us, please leave a comment below.

Comments about this page

  • Anyone remember my Great Aunt Emily Scrace’s sweetshop at Number 19? She lived there for years on her own and passed away around 1965. Always went to visit on a Sunday and came away with a bag of sweets!

    By Martin Scrace (30/03/2014)
  • There were three houses like this; the house you are showing, No.37, is where I lived when growing up. My parents lived there for about 45 years, 1945-1970, but we made the best of it. We had no hot water or electric sockets and an outside toilet.

    By Kathleen Catt (nee Cornford) (20/07/2014)
  • Martin – I remember your aunt very well, we used to buy our sweets in her shop. When sweets were on ration your aunt had a little hammer which I think they called a toffee hammer and she would break pieces of the sweets to get the right weight. I also delivered her paper. I lived in George Street from 1945 till 1963 when I got married.

    By Kathleen Catt (nee Cornford) (08/10/2014)
  • Hi Kathleen.  Thanks for responding, I was only 10 when she passed away but always thought I was so lucky to have a great-aunt with a sweet shop! I’m told she never married as she lost her ‘sweetheart’ in WW1 – probably very common in the aftermath of 1914-18. The whole area seems so vibrant now, I try and have a wander around when I’m back in Brighton.

    By Martin Scrace (12/10/2014)
  • Hello Maria, I am afraid that we can no longer print requests for information about particular persons whereabouts, but we do hope you are successful in finding the information you seek. Best wishes, Editing Team. 

    By Maria (14/02/2015)
  • Hi Kathy. don’t know if you’ll get to read this but I and my older sister Janet used to live above the greengrocers at no. 46. John Stanley we used to play out in the street with you. Paul Beynon my first boyfriend, his uncle had the barbers next door and he used to come down in the summer and chase me through the alleyway.

    By Pam Sanders nee Jones (24/10/2019)
  • My grandparents Robert and Ethel Johnson lived at No36 (opposite No37) adjacent and at one time part of the Thurlow Arms but not when I knew it (1952 onwards). A tiny little house with no ‘mod cons’. Nan brought up 5 children there. Robert (Bob), William (Bill), Edward (Ted) who perished in WW2, Winifred and my father Peter all sadly now deceased.

    By Brian Johnson (18/03/2020)

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