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Mystery Mismatch in Prince's Terrace

No 12 Prince's Terrace 2008
Peter Groves

Mystery Mismatch

I expect like me others have noticed houses around the town that don’t match those on either side?  Bomb damage from WWII is the cause of many, however here is one that has an interesting mystery!

12 Prince’s Terrace

In Prince’s Terrace, No 12 just does not match the late Victorian/Edwardian houses on either side.  It seems that No 12 was damaged during a German air raid early on the morning of the 15th of July 1940.  However I found blogs on the internet that state “on the 15th July 1940 No 13 was bombed and badly damaged and Mrs Ettie Hargreaves was killed”!

Numbering Mystery

So was it No 12 or No 13 that was bombed and badly damaged?  Looking on Google Earth I noticed that the plot is quite wide and I wonder if 2 houses were badly damaged; the terraced houses on either side are much narrower?  If this is the case and 2 houses were badly damaged it makes more sense, however then the numbering on either side is incorrect.  Either side of No 12 are Nos 11 and 13 and both seem in original order, unless renumbering occurred and No 12 was built after WWII on the plot of 2 previous houses.  I have no idea of the exact details of this mystery, who has the answer?

Comments about this page

  • Hello Peter,
    How lovely to be featured in your Mystery Photo gallery.

    I have lived at 12 Princes Terrace for 40 years. The house was built in 1914. When we bought it, it was a house with a small detached garage alongside. The plot of land it sits on is exactly the same as 3 of the terraced houses either side. We always thought that 3 houses were planned perhaps?

    Originally, the garage belonged to No 11, but was purchased by No 12 for around £64.

    You are right about the bomb damage, and I believe it was just No 13 – who have a photo of the damage which appears just to be the rear of their house. When we moved in – everything was painted black, floors, stairs…etc

    In 2009 we demolished the garage and extended the house.

    I have all the deeds of the property, which make an interesting read, however, there is absolutely nothing that says why the house was built differently to all the others.

    There is a lovely wall that runs along the back of all the houses, and I have tried to find out who owns it – and nobody knows.

    If only we could borrow the Tardis for a day or so to go back and find the answers..

    Thanks again for finding my house interesting.

    By Elsa Gillio (31/10/2022)
  • Hi Elsa, thanks for your clear explanation of No 12, which really does solve the mystery. I’ve been interested in the WWII bombing of Brighton for many years, and took the photo of your house about 10 or more years ago. At that time I felt sure that the local history stories about No 13 being bombed must have been wrong, and that it was really No 12, look how wrong you can be. I also have a few photos of the bomb damage, and now I know, “it really was No 13”. Thanks again Peter.

    By Peter Groves (31/10/2022)
  • You should also have a look at White Street, on the right going up the street are 6 houses that vary from the rest.This is due to the destruction by an ariel mine in 1940. It is featured on this site just search for White Street.

    By Ken Ross (10/11/2022)

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