Black Rock

The boundary of Brighton until 1928

History notes from the original 'My Brighton' exhibit, 1994

Black Rock was the boundary of Brighton until 1928. In order to avoid the Parish coal-tax by being just outside the boundary, the Brighton Gas Light and Coke company built its works there in 1818-1819 and by 1828 some housing and a pub had also been built.

Cliff top erosions
By 1897 the cliff top had eroded by 75 feet. Many landslips followed until the 1920s Undercliff Walk halted the erosion. The opening of the new road to Rottingdean in 1932 led to the demolition of the pub. The other cliff top buildings were finally demolished when the Marina road interchange was built in 1976.

The Lido built in 1934-36
The Black Rock Lido was built in 1934-36 designed by the Borough architect, David Edwards, in a popular modernist Deco style. Unfortunately it was closed in 1978 and the proposed Water Theme-park for the site has yet to be built.

This page was added on 22/03/2006.
Comments about this page
Before the Marina was built, it was quite easy to access and view the raised beach at Black Rock. The former beach level (pre-Ice Age) was clearly visible in the cliff face, with beach pebbles marking where the sea had once reached. That beach was subsequently covered by Coombe deposits - slumped chalk and debris - which formed the upper part of the cliff at this point.
By Martin Nimmo (31/01/2003)

I remember many a happy time spent at Black Rock swimming pool. We spent most of the school summer holidays there, jumping off the diving boards, having fun and queuing for tea or ice cream at the cafe. I also remember there was a hard area for playing a game where the ball was attached to elastic and you had two bats which I think you had to hire. I'm sure youngsters even today would have loved it.

By Gay Patrick (nee Granger) (26/01/2015)

What more can be said of Black Rock that has not been said? This was one of my playgrounds from the 40s until the 60s. As a kid growing up it was such a marvelous place to play. The eastern part of Brighton was such a good place to grow up, near the sea and near to the countryside, what more could a kid want. Shame about the Marina but this is progress and another playground for another generation.

By Mick Peirson (27/01/2015)

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