Westdene:developed in the 1950s

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 housing estate, centred around Mill Rise, Bankside and Barn Rise, was developed principally in the 1950s on the slopes of Coney Hill and Red Hill, although there was some development in the Barn Rise and Eldred Avenue areas in the 1930s. Westdene Woods occupy over eight acres between Eldred Avenue and Fairview Rise, and were acquired by the corporation in May 1939. Westdene Library was opened on 13 March 1964 by the mayor, Stanley Deason, while the Church Hall of the Ascension in Mill Rise was designed by John Wells-Thorpe and dedicated in February 1958 in connection with All Saints’ Church, Patcham. Coppercliff in Redhill Drive, the former home of the Braybon family that developed much of the area, became a cancer hospice in 1965. {83,123,126}
At the lower end of the greensward enclosed by Barn Rise and Dene Vale is an old flint wall surrounding a children’s play area, all that remains of a former farmyard which was demolished in the late 1950s. Newmans Barn, which stood adjacently, probably dated from the late eighteenth century but was removed in the early 1960s. Bowling-greens were then laid out following meetings with residents, but they proved a failure and were removed although the wooden pavilion remains {126}.

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.

Comments about this page

  • This photo looks like it’s looking down Eldred Avenue which I walked up and down many times. We lived in Fernwood Rise, and I can remember my father saying the bungalow we lived in cost £2000. What price would it be now I wonder? I think I must have climbed every tree in the area.

    By Roger Davis (14/04/2011)
  • This photo is taken in Mill Rise looking down towards Loyal (?) Parade shops. The junction with Bramble Rise is on the left and behind the photographers right shoulder would be the junction with Westdene Drive. I lived in Highbank (on the left) just before the shops from ’63 to ’84. Good memories!

    By Symon Johnston (06/10/2013)
  • I grew up on Mill Rise 1970-81 age 7-18 and remember the bowling green next to the play park. When it was abandoned around ’75 the flat grass made a very good kids’ cricket wicket and I played there with Keith Gooders, Philip Brown, Mark Le Masurier, Dean and Darren Pope and others. Fond memories also of jumping from the high flint wall into the sand pit and also, in the play park, my first kiss (age 10)!

    By Leo Eyles (04/11/2014)

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