Pool Passage

Leads to the Old Steine

The way from Pool Valley into East Street was via the east gate of the town until 1760 when it was removed for the construction of the battery. Pool Passage, which is off Pool Valley, leads to the Old Steine and is lined with old flint walls.

The Olde Bunn Shoppe

Pool Passage is adjacent to the interesting, grade II*-listed building which was erected in 1794 and is faced with black mathematical tiles. For about 150 years it was used by the Cowley family as a bun shop. The photograph from the James Gray collection shows the sign on the roof which says, ‘Ye Olde Bunn Shoppe’ and was taken in 1954.

Brighton in 1799:based on Yeakell and Gardner

Comments about this page

  • Pool Passage is a remnant of old Brighton that is fast becoming a twitten jammed with wheelie bin skips from the nearby restaurants. It is one of the last surviving elements of what was Brighton’s ‘East End’; a very poor part of the early resort. There is a book of 1924 by George Aitchison -“Unknown Brighton”- which has an atmospheric watercolour of the passage giving it a Dickensian air; it hasn’t changed much but we must be careful it does not become a private ‘steal’ from the city (or a ‘gated area’ as it is euphemistically termed). As with all such alleys it does suffer anti-social elements but make sure it is used!

    By Geoffrey Mead (07/11/2011)
  • I well remember Pool Passage in the 60s as there was a photographic club located there on the left hand side, proberly the Brighton and Hove camera club? I am ashamed to say that I only joined as occasionally they had live nude models which I suppose was quite exciting at the time.

    By Dennis Fielder (30/07/2012)
  • Nice to see these history pages as I was researching a book I have - Unknown Brighton by George Aitchison – as our family have ties to Brighton, Plumpton, Chailey etc.

    By Jonathan Prettejohns (08/01/2013)
  • As Geoff Mead predicted 11 years ago, sure enough, the council are gating it off.

    By Lex Angel (19/07/2022)
  • Thankfully the recent idea to ‘gate’ Pool Passage has been blocked by the council. I still take guided walks there as it is so atmospheric. Someone has put a ‘private property’ notice up at the Pool Valley end. It has no legal or council authority to do that and should be ignored.

    By Dr Geoffrey Mead (23/07/2022)

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