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Then and now photos

19th century view
At the end of the street, on the left, you can still faintly see the outline of today’s Black Lion pub.  The original building was part of one of the oldest brewery buildings in the world. The Black Lion brewery was established in 1546 by Deryk Carver, a Flemish immigrant, the first Protestant to be martyred under Mary I.

20th century view
On the left, you can clearly see the original brewery building which is recreated in today’s Black Lion pub. It is topped by a weathercock.  The building on the right is the back of the old Market. You can see the front of the Market in the twentieth century photo of Market Street, elsewhere on this tour.

21st century view
This shot shows Black Lion Street in The Lanes, looking inland from the sea.  At the end of the street, on the left, you can see the tall roof of the Black Lion pub, topped by a weathercock. This roof profile has survived the centuries. However, the pub itself is a 1974 reconstruction of the ancient brewery buildings that originally stood on the site.

19th century view
Image reproduced with permission from Brighton History Centre
20th century view
From the private collection of Bert Clayton
21st Century view.
Photograph by Tricia Leonard

Comments about this page

  • My great great grandmother, Louisa Jane Jaggard was living at 1 Black Lion St at the time of her marriage to John Morrison on 16th November 1864, at the Presbyterian Church, Church St, Brighton. Thank you so much for the photos.

    By Lynley Chapman, Whitby, Porirua, New Zealand (08/06/2007)
  • My relative, Auguste Le Miere, operated his egg, butter and fruit importing business at 23 & 24 Black Lion Street from the 1850s through to the 1880s, and perhaps beyond this date.

    By Don Cameron (31/01/2008)
  • My grandfather Rudolf Pratschke operated a restaurant from 1907 (probably to 1910) on Black Lion Street, but I cannot trace the house number or where it might lie with respect to the present appearance of the street. Any assistance or guidance would be most welcome.

    By John L. Pratschke (19/02/2009)
  • Hi, just looked at your pics. My great, great grandfather (John Hodges) was the licencee of the Black Lion (77 Gloster Rd, Brighton). Do you know if this is the same pub? Many thanks.

    By Chris Hodges (07/03/2009)
  • My Great Aunt Annie and husband Herbert Steel, on the 1911 census, ran a boarding house at No.7 Black Lion Street. It looks like all boarders were male and they had 2 servants. Can anyone tell me if No.7 still stands and, if not, what side of the road was it on? The Black Lion Inn is No.14.

    By Joyce Jackson (01/04/2015)
  • Hi Joyce. No.7 Black Lion Street was on the western side of the road, on a corner into the entrance of the Old Ship Assembly Rooms. At the street level part of the building were dining rooms. Unfortunately it is no longer there. Regards Andy

    By Andy Grant (03/04/2015)
  • Thanks Andy for the information, interesting that there was a dining area on the first floor because Annie was recorded as Manageress of Dining rooms and Herbert a cabman. But also they were both head of the house hold. All the boarders were chauffeurs. Does anyone know if there are records of businesses in the Jubilee library? Annie died in 1936 but Herbert in 1957. I wonder how long they continued the business.

    By Joyce Jackson (15/04/2015)
  • Butler’s fishing tackle shop was located next door to the Brewery Shades pub (run by my grandmother). I have photos of the facade which never seem to appear in historic books or images of this street. Perhaps a missing link

    By Bob Butler (13/04/2016)
  • Bob, I wonder if I would be able to have a copy of a photo that you have of Butler’s Fishing Tackle shop? I’m making a scrapbook for my stepdad’s 70th birthday and his Mum and Dad used to run the shop. I’d love to include it. My email is Many thanks.

    By Jackie Dunne (21/05/2016)
  • My grandmother and father, along with their children, lived at number 11 Black Lion St, and ran a little tea room from that address around about the 1920s. The last time I was there it had been pulled down and was the TSB office.

    By Beverley Triber (25/07/2017)
  • I am attempting to research family history for a William King, whose name is registered on the 1851 census as being resident at 10 Black Lion Street, Brighton.
    He was listed as a Mine Merchant along with his wife Jane, and children Mary Jane King, Sarah Augusta King, William Worsfold King and James King.
    He appeared to be prosperous, as they also had a Governess, a Clerk and a Servant listed at that address.
    I would appreciate any photos of that residence, and or details of owners if that is possible.
    My direct connection is Sarah Augusta King who ended up in Australia, and who is my Great Grandmother, marrying a Carl August Wittber (of German descent).

    By Ian Wittber (14/03/2022)
  • Ian,
    I think you may have misread your census details as that is almost certainly a WINE merchant in Black Lion Street not a MINE merchant.

    By Dr Geoffrey Mead (15/03/2022)
  • Thank you for your comment. I have looked again, and you are quite right, it is probably a wine merchant.
    Will look further into this, however still looking for any other feedback that anyone can supply.

    By Ian Wittber (17/03/2022)
  • Hi, the history of this street is very interesting. My family tree identifies an Ellen Maria Goble being a domestic servant at Number 20 Black Lion Street, Brighton but the numbering now seems to stop at Number 14. After Number 14 the road is crossed by Prince Albert St and opposite it goes into Meeting House Lane. Does anyone know what happened to the rest of Black Lion St? The 1881 Census lists properties up to Number 31 Black Lion St. When Ellen worked there she worked for a William H Holden who’s occupation was listed as “China & Glass Dealer Employing 5 Men”. Does anyone have any ideas about what happened to the rest of the road or about William the China and Glass Dealer. Many thanks in advance.

    By Jamie (07/08/2022)
  • Black Lion Street suffered greatly in the 1970s as the large hotel built [unbelievably!] across the ancient Market Street extended to Black Lion street, along with the development of the huge underground carpark and local govt offices in Bartholomews Square. This took away much of the east side of the street, so that today the numbering is really only for the west side, which also underwent a large devt in the early 21st century. I have Kelly’s 1914 which only shows 29 properties so there may have been re-numbering, but none of the businesses at that date show anything that links to a china & glass dealer. I did look at the adjacent area of Kings Rd and again can find nothing that links to that type of business.

    By Dr Geoffrey Mead (09/08/2022)

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