Cobbler's Thumb

The Cobbler's Thumb, New England Street: then and now

Photo:Photograph of The Cobbler's Thumb

Photograph of The Cobbler's Thumb

Image reproduced with permission from Brighton History Centre

Photo:Photograph of The Cobbler's Thumb, 2004

Photograph of The Cobbler's Thumb, 2004

Photo by Mike Snewin

Added to the site on 16-12-04 
This page was added on 22/03/2006.
Comments about this page
This was originally the New England Inn.
By Lex Angel (17/06/2006)

Yes it was & it says so above. My St. Bartholomews school friend lived there in the '50s with his family. His name was Glynn Hillman, not sure how long they had it as we lost touch when we went to Margaret Hardy & Fawcett.

By Anne Newman (23/03/2012)

This has just closed and is boarded up and fenced off. There are signs saying unsafe structure. Guess that’ll be the end of the building, and the last piece of the old New England Road.

By Delbert (23/04/2013)

I did not think there were plans to demolish the pub; the yard behind is due to be the site of the new scheme to house some of the street-people in the city by providing shipping containers fitted out as temporary homes. It is a scheme which has been tried out in The Netherlands quite successfully. I would hope the pub would be something like a community hub for the residents.

By Geoffrey Mead (24/04/2013)

As a young boy in the '50s. we lived in Boston Street just around the corner from what the pub was called then - The New England Inn. Shame it never kept it's name. My family used the pub in those days and it would be a sorry day if the building was pulled down. The other pubs that were around New England St area then have all gone, so I hope it can be saved (I am sorry to report that the pub has indeed been pulled down. Comments Ed)

By Dave Guildford (10/04/2014)

Very sad to hear of its demise. Another great old Brighton pub gone. This was a regular venue after the Duke of York's - good place to discuss the film over a pint.

By Iain Read (15/11/2014)

I heard that the council forced the demolition through, saying the building was unsafe, but my mate (a surveyor) said that account was a load of rubbish!

By Peter Groves (16/11/2014)

Interestingly the top photo looks to be late 1970's or even early 1980's, but note the grassy bank to the left, but in the 2004 photo the scrap merchant's building is there!

By Peter Groves (25/11/2014)

Hello Peter. I think it's just a trick of the camera angle. If you look at this old photo (copy and paste!):  

You will see that what looks like a grassy bank is in fact the Geo Richardson building!

My friend's father used to work at that scrap metal merchants in the 1960s. Regards, Alan.

By Alan Hobden (26/11/2014)

Well done Alan, it looks like you are correct!

By Peter Groves (27/11/2014)

Yet another traditional old Brighton Pub now sadly gone supposedly in the name of progress? The top photo was almost certainly taken in the mid 1980s or later. The white car in the shot is a Mk 2 Vauxhall Astra Hatchback first introduced in the UK October 1984 although I keep looking at the dark coloured Estate Car heading up New England Road and the more I look the more familiar it becomes for the life of me I can`t think of the make.      

By Chris Wrapson (27/11/2014)

The New England pub was owned by our neighbours in New England Street Lillian and Bert Burrell in the 70s.

The street had three pubs at one time, The Fitters at the top end and The Harriers in the middle by Boston Street.

By Chris Halstead (07/03/2015)

Lillian and Burt Burrell were my nan and grandad;  remember the days I played billiards and sat at the sports bar at the back and dunked my crisps in my glass of coke.

By Kerry Burrell (30/07/2017)

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