Mystery photos of Brighton and Hove

Pigotts Hotel:Madeira Place

By David Ransom

This real photograph postcard shows a recent purchase of mine to go with my 'Wiles of Hove' collection. I would be very interested to know if anyone knew 'Pigotts' on the corner of Madeira Place. Also, the caption just says "Us" at Pigotts, so I wonder who "Us" was; perhaps the photographer Wiles managed to get in the photograph?

And then, also, why are three of the women wearing the same clothes? I would date the photograph somewhere in the 1920s. The fact that this photograph has a printed Post Card back does not necessarily mean that it was produced in quantity and sold as a postcard. Deane, Wiles & Miller, the publishers, produced a great many postcards of Brighton and Hove views, and also sporting events, but they may also have printed a few 'one off' cards.

If you have any ideas or information, please do leave a comment below.

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


Photo:Us at Pigotts, Brighton

Us at Pigotts, Brighton

Deane, Wiles & Millar, 9 Regent Court, Brighton

This page was added on 25/12/2011.
Comments about this page

Hi David, The establishment featured was the St. James's Hotel, on the corner with St. James's Street at 16., Madeira Place. The proprietor was Frederick Oliver Pigott, born Poplar in 1867. The likelihood is that the picture shows him at the rear, surrounded by the staff (three appear to be dressed the same) at the hotel. It is possible the man in front might have been his son, Cyril. Regards, Andy

By Andy Grant (26/12/2011)

This looks to have been taken on the steps at the Madeira Place doorway of the now 'Saint James' pub. The doorway has been remodelled to a standard door since this photo; the original must have a bespoke arched door with moldings on the door frame. Behind the shoulders of the two outer ladies, those moldings are still in place and can be seen on Google maps street view. The photo would be after 1915, as Madeira Place was originally called German Place; the street was renamed during the first world war.

By Michael Brittain (26/12/2011)

Hallo David. Thank you for this photo. I so love to look over the old styles and see how clothes and even faces have changed over the years. I have no special connection with this piece of history but am very curious about your name. My grandparents were Ransom and I am searching and hoping to find other members of my family with that name. Are you by any long shot chance related to George, Warren, or Anne Ransom? I would be delighted to hear from you and happy to leave my email here if you prefer private contact. Thank you and hope to hear from you. TheMossFairy@cooptel.net

By Sandra Bohtlingk (12/01/2012)

My great grandmother's daughter Alice Louisa M Taunton (1900-1973) was Frederick Oliver Pigott's second wife. I am wondering whether the woman second from left was Alice or was it his first wife Annie Francis nee Sanderson who died in 1925? 

By Susan Djauharie (04/01/2014)

This pub at one time was called Pigotts. The name stuck for years after even when I was a girl in 1960. I worked behind the bar for a while.

By Jean Toye (08/10/2015)

Pleased to confirm that the lady not in housecoat was in fact the second wife of Fred Pigott, Alice Taunton (known as Vera). She was my grandmother.

Post WW2, the St James became one of the first queer pubs in Brighton. My parents lived in the flat above the bar.

Before the war, Pigotts (Father and son Cyril)also ran the Brighton&Hove cricket ground, The Albion Hotel in Hove, a pub in Shoreham and the Devils Dyke Hotel.

By Simon Raybould (11/01/2017)

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