North Laine

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'North Laine' page

From the Guardian, June 7th, 2001

The land that time forgot

Simon Hoggart, political sketchwriter, reporting on Clare Short's visit to the North Laine during the 2001 General Election campaign.

"Slowly, we were moving into North Laine, which is Brighton's hippy area. This really is the land that time forgot. It's lovely.

The Organic Coffee House, Vegetarian Shoes, second-hands CDs of Buddhist chants, the Hemp Shop, falafel bars, Oddballs: the anti-gravity experts, several shops selling stuff which is only marginally legal, and, puzzlingly, Sussex Fitted Kitchens.

The visitors were all looking 'groovy', 'mellow' and 'laid back'; the shopkeepers, by contrast, were obsessed with crime, since thefts of wind chimes and stone carved Sanskrit talismans are, apparently, rampant.

And where are the police when you see some scoundrel legging it with a hammered brass joss stick holder and a cress-flavour yoghurt sandwich?"

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