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Brighton Aquarium Programme

My son sent me this photo of a Brighton Aquarium Programme; from the 1870s?

He found it in a bar in Paris – on the wall of the gents’ urinals of all places! 

I would be interested in what people thought of this rather surreal occurrence?


Click on the image to open a large version in a new window. 

Aquarium poster
From the personal collection of Ross Milne

Comments about this page

  • Wow! What a find and what a story! From one “aquatic” place to another! I’m sure Brighton Sea Life Centre/Aquarium or Brighton Museum would love to have this in their possession. Reading it, it’s hard for us to imagine just how exotic this place must have seemed to ordinary Brightonians in the 1870s. It must have been like stepping into another world. Thank you for posting, Ross. 

    By Janet Beal (09/10/2017)
  • Thanks for sharing this, Ross.  Whether it be original or a facsimile, it looks a wonderful, genuine advertisement of its time: yes, from at least the late 1870s (“Baby Sea Lion born in Aquarium May 14, ’77”), maybe this advert dates from the 1880s? The Sunday opening hours are typical, but weekdays to as late as 10pm came as a surprise to me. An impressive array of sea life, including “A Gigantic Turtle weighing over 400 lbs. presented by The Queen”, I never knew she was so strong!  A “splendid collection” of Diving Birds, Promenade Concerts and Band Rehearsals daily. What more could one ask for?  It’s surprising where we obtain our information sometimes!

    By Sam Flowers (09/10/2017)
  • That’s a great poster, what a find. As of the previous comments a great collection of species. I do remember back in the late 1950s, maybe ’57/8, seeing a giant turtle that the keepers claimed was over a hundred years old and there was an alligator (or crocodile) that barely moved all day unless it was being fed. Occasionally a keeper would enter the enclosure and prod it with a broom handle to get some reaction and prove it was real. I am surprised at the entry prices shown on the poster: 1/- a day. Even in 1914 at the start of WW1, an infantryman’s wage was only 1/- a day.
    Research on the Aquarium band and conductor, a Mr E. Keyloff, might produce results for the approximate year. If the Sea Lion is still advertised as a baby it may well still be 1877-1878, I believe they rapidly reach maturity.

    By Bob from Brighton (11/10/2017)

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