Construction in the 1960s

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  • My guess is 1962, or more likely ’63. People started moving into the building late 1963 but in the photo the trees have leaves so it’s not early in the year. Although there are still heavy works happening, bits being hauled up the end of the building, most of the building is there, so I guess it’s the lift machinery, air blowers etc. being hauled. The building was probably then known as “Brighton College of Technology”. Note that the official opening was not until Feb 1966 (by Sir John Cockcroft, who’s name was given to the building some years after that).

    By Charles Wordingham (04/08/2004)
  • The Cockcroft Building was bulit by the then Brighton Corporation and was a College of Further Education. With the merger of the Art College in Grand Parade it later became Brighton Polytechnic under the Education Department of East Sussex County Council. Soon after that the Teacher Training College at Falmer merged and the the Poly was granted University status and was no longer part of East Sussex County Council.

    By Mike Adams (28/10/2004)
  • The university was built on the playing fields used by Coombe Road School in the 1930s.

    By Viv Webb (04/06/2005)
  • When I attended from 1968 to 1972 it was called Brighton College of Advanced Technology, located at the Moulescombe site.

    By Peter Atter (16/05/2007)
  • What is now called the Falmer Campus was originally called the Teacher Training College. The institution now called the University of Brighton was originally founded as an art school in 1859. Other preceding institutes included the Municipal Technical College in 1897 and Teacher Training College in 1909. The technical college and art school merged in 1970 to form Brighton Polytechnic; the teachers college merged into the school in 1976. It became a university in 1992. (Source:

    By Vernon Page (23/09/2007)
  • When I was at the Brighton Technical College in the late 1960s, this establishment was known as the “Brighton College of Technology” and later, when I attended here in the early 1970s, as the “Brighton Polytechnic”. Later still it became Brighton University.

    By Alan Phillips (17/10/2007)
  • I remember going to see what was then Brighton Poly with Fairlight Junior School in 1974 and thought, one day I want to go there. After years of work I enlisted on the BA Social Policy degree course in 2004 at Falmer and graduated in 2007. I remember sitting in the Ccockcroft library preparing for finals and looking out towards the avenue remembering that visit and saying quietly to myself a promise come true. Yes.

    By Nina Blount (25/11/2009)
  • I was an American college student in the autumn term of 1984 at the Falmer campus. We lived at the seafront halls and took the train from Brighton for classes. Happy, happy times, those. I think of them still everyday.

    By Ryan Baas (31/08/2010)
  • This photo is way before 1970. I first visited the college in the autumn of 1967, and as I recall the builders had gone, the grounds were landscaped and all facilities at the college were fully functional. In autumn of 1968 I went for an interview; there was a further building under construction to the top of the image. This was T Block, shaped like a T. I arrived at the college in September 1969 and T block was completed and in use. The college was Brighton College of Education. There had been a teacher training college in Brighton in various premises including Black Lion Street, The Brighton Forum (previously known as the Brighton Business Centre) towards the bottom of Ditchling Road, and Eastern Terrace. At these locations Anglican female teachers were trained. I suspect that men were first admitted when the college was established at Falmer. A goodly proportion of the buildings in the image have since been demolished and replaced (having come to the end of their lives being for the most wooden frame structures) to a much higher specification by The University of Brighton.

    By David Wilkinson (10/12/2010)
  • The two images on this page are from different locations; 1st being the old Polytechnic on the Lewes Road, and the second (this one) being the Falmer Faculty of Brighton University. I always knew it as the Teacher Training College in the very early 70s, as Brighton University did not exist then! If you compare the Google Earth view, some buildings are the same and as David says, some have been demolished and replaced.

    By Peter Groves (02/02/2012)
  • I worked at the building from 1970 to 1974 when it was called the Brighton Polytechnic. I worked on the top floor which was the computer department and remember the huge computers that filled one of the large rooms.

    By Vanessa Crouch (02/02/2012)
  • I was a student of the (then) recently re-named University of Brighton from 1992 – 1995. For the first year of my course, the Falmer site was the location for all my lectures and halls of residence. We were told that it had been a former teacher training college and found some evidence of this in the library which had archived a student magazine ‘Inform’. The student-produced magazine, a mixture of gig reviews (early Fairport Convention, Jimi Hendrix), the best shops for cool clothes and lost football boots on campus, plus articles talking about the new campus, date the opening to late 1966-67. It’s very odd looking back at these buildings, now mostly demolished. Good times when life was so much simpler.

    By Callum Duff (14/11/2017)
  • When the new facility opened at Moulsecoomb in 1963, I did my final year in Mechanical Engineering at Brighton College of Advanced Technology as it was known, and before it’s construction I played sports on the field that was there. 

    By Richard White (10/05/2018)
  • I studied Electrical Engineering (Light Current) ie; Electronics, in the Cockcroft Building from 1962 till 1966.  It was then the Brighton College of Technology.  Met some great people there.

    By Rodger Olive (11/05/2018)
  • I am a current student of the university researching the history of the Brighton campuses, and I wondered if anyone would share their stories of memories of the campus green and blue spaces such as the lawns and ponds. I am curious to know how these were used back then.

    By Adora Ude (21/10/2019)
  • Hello…I was student at the then ‘Brighton Teachers’ Training College’. 1962 – 1965.
    The main buildings were on Eastern Terrace, although art and needlework studios were in Sussex Square , a short walk away.
    (A difficult winter walk in the wind, hanging on to any available railings! )

    My name then, Zena Batty – a student with a
    Main Course in Crafts, and a Math/Science minor.

    In those years THERE WAS NO FALMER CAMPUS!
    That came after my time at college. During my first year of teaching in Warwickshire I was offered a place at Falmer to undertake a B.Ed.
    as we did not leave college with degrees. I was reluctant to leave my teaching position which I was loving – so happy to be teaching after three years of hard work. I declined, with reluctance.
    I came to regret that decision, years later after immigrating to Canada. There I had to jump many hoops and take numerous courses to up-grade my credentials to obtain a Canadian B.Ed

    I would love to hear from anyone who remembers me, or the times spent at ‘The Training College By the Sea’. They were wonderful years!

    There was no Falmer ampus

    By Zena Boyes (Nee Batty) (08/01/2022)

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