The Windmill Pub on Upper North Street

“During genealogy research, I’ve discovered that my grandmother lived at 69 Upper North St.& my grandfather, prior to their marriage lived at No. 63 – this was in 1911. I believe that No. 69 is now a pub – The Windmill? Does anyone know if it was a pub in 1911 or is that a more recent thing? Many thanks for any help – really enjoy your site, as it brings back many memories of growing up in Brighton/Hove.”

Response 1:

“The Windmill public house dates from about 1828 and is probably named from Vine’s Mill.
The Clifton Gardens were laid out when Clifton Terrace was built in 1847. They were and still are for the exclusive use of residents of this street, but were once the site of the Clifton Windmill, which was built around 1810-1820s and was moved in 1837 to Windmill Street in the Albion Hill area.”

Comments about this page

  • The response jogged my memory! When I was little, about 7 maybe, Alan Melville lived on Clifton Terrace and used to let a number of us children of neighbouring areas into the Gardens to play every now and then. He was very kind and brought us lemonade and biscuits. I remember his name and also that he was apparently quite well known. Does anyone know of him and what he did, or remember going into the gardens to play?

    By Patricia Silsby (27/02/2007)
  • Up the side of the Windmill pub stood a very lovely house back from the pavement. A huge great place, it is now a block of flats I think. The actress Brender Bruce lived there with her husband. I can’t remember his name and there were two daughters. I went to school with them at St Mary Magdalen’s over the road in Upper North street.

    By Patrick Kite (28/10/2007)
  • As a child in the early 1960’s, I lived in Victoria Street and my mother was a close friend with Mr and Mrs Davies, landlord and landlady of The Windmill Pub. I was led to believe that the tiny part of the bar at the back was originally part of a funeral directors and it was there that they would lay out the deceased. Has anyone else heard this story? Or was it invented to scare a small child?

    By Vanessa Denyer (07/04/2009)
  • Does anyone remember anything about The Hampton next to Mary Mags? I grew up in Spring St 54-67 and my aunt Sylvia worked there. She was murdered in an off license in the lanes at work. Any info would be greatly appreciated.

    By Alan Taylor (28/06/2011)
  • Alan I remember this. For a long time I have wanted to know if the murderer was ever caught. I’m sorry I am unable to help you on this. I was a young girl working in British Home Stores along Western Road at the time. Some terrible things stick in your mind don’t they? I recall she was knitting and a thief came in. Such a long time ago, so my memory may be vague. A terrible thing to happen.

    By Jennifer Tonks (29/06/2011)
  • Hi Alan. I worked with Sylvia’s daughter Sandra at the time. It was a horrible shock to us all when it happened. I don’t believe any one has been caught. I have lived in Melbourne since 1968 and would love to know how Sandra is, we had a lot of fun in the office. I can be contacted at

    By Peter Wood (01/07/2011)
  • Thank you for your memories Jennifer. Apart from my aunt’s, there were two other murders happened during my childhood and no, they don’t leave your memory. Keith Lyon the son of a local bandleader and the skeleton remains of a Michael Trower found, I think on the downs near Woodingdean.

    By Alan Taylor (02/07/2011)
  • I recall the other two murders as well Alan. At school, police came round asking about a tramp like person seen in the Michael Trower murder. I may be wrong but, I believe one, possibly two people have been questioned about the Keith Lyon murder. Have you thought to speak to Brighton Police? Apparently there is a freedom of information service now. It may well urge them to look again at your aunts murder. DNA etc now!

    By Jennifer Tonks (02/07/2011)
  • Back in the late 1970s I used to drink at the Windmill, it was part of the fun of the place to see the reactions of the landlord to his clientele. For some reason known only to the brewery, the landlord of a pub frequented by long-haired hippy students, was someone who wore a military tie, white shirt and had a parting in his Brylcreemed hair. He drew pints with gritted teeth and fixed grin. He was eventually to be seen as landlord of the Royal Sovereign, Preston St where the customers were more of his ilk.

    By Geoffrey Mead (03/07/2011)
  • Hi Jennifer. Yes, it is certainly a thought, but she has two daughters and perhaps it is not my place to stir up bad memories. Apparently in the Keith Lyon case there was some suspicion directed at a gang of lads from Fitzherbert, as it was, in Woodingdean. But no evidence of course. Thanks for your interest though.

    By Alan Taylor (04/07/2011)
  • In reply to Patrica Silsby and Patrick Kite. Alan Mellville was a famous playwright, his plays are still peformed today. Brenda Bruce was married to Roy Rich, who was an actor, t.v presenter and controller of Southern Television. He died in the early sixties at about fifty four years of age. They were all friends of Gilbert Harding who was a t.v personality on ‘What’s my line?’. Although he appeared to be irascible on t.v, he was a pussycat really.

    By terry hyde (13/07/2011)
  • I would love to find out more about the history of The Windmill pub if anyone can help me?

    By Rosie (11/09/2017)

Add a comment about this page

Your email address will not be published.