Pier/Royal Escape

Photos: then and now

Marine Parade

Photo:Pier/Escape

Pier/Escape

Image reproduced with permission from Brighton History Centre

Photo:Audio

Audio

Photo by Mike Snewin

Added to the site on 21-12-04 
This page was added on 22/03/2006.
Comments about this page

I thought it was also called the Buccaneer - I had my 21st birthday party here in 1980.

By Mick Allen (30/09/2008)

I think you're right Mick. During the early 70s I used to sometimes drink here at weekends. It had a bar in the basement which became quite, shall we say, 'lively'. We were removed by the police more than once.

By Jester (30/10/2009)

I think it was the Buccaneer too. I remember seeing a few bands here, it was the place to see good Rock bands in the late 70s and 80s. One popular Brighton band that we loved was called "Spoons". All that changed in Brighton when the strict licensing laws came in, which was a shame. Cheers 

By Mike Peckett (23/06/2011)

I'm not really sure the licensing laws became stricter, surely they went the other way?

By Peter Groves (25/06/2011)

Hi Peter, what I meant was that landlords were required to provide fire exits and escapes if public houses were to be music venues or used for similar types of entertainment. Some landlords didn't have the the money to pay for the building work as in some cases would have been some major work to be carried out. The other thing that changed if not killed off the band scene was that some councils put restrictions on how many musicians could play at a time, usually just two or a duo. This may have been due to noise /environmental issues but it was ok to have a disco which could often be louder than a band. In Brighton many musicians made a few bob on the side from band work, I should know because I was one of them. I'm sure that landlords did well if they hosted a popular band, places were packed out. I reckon it wasn't liked that the government didn't pay tax on these small earnings! Cheers.

By Mike Peckett (03/07/2011)

Ahh .. The Buccaneer! I can remember going there to see The Spoons too. I was amazed when I realised the lead singer had been at Varndean a year below me. Can't remember his name though - Miles something? I also remember it being one of the first places to have a Space Invaders machine.

By Marc Turner (01/03/2013)

'Twas the Buccaneer. Then the Royal Escape. Definitely.

By easternrd (24/07/2013)

I recall watching an early Stranglers gig there. Part of a beam came away from the ceiling due to some of the audience hanging on to it. The write up in the NME described it as a punk riot! It didn't take much in the late '70s to get labelled a juvenile delinquent!

By Martin Scrace (25/07/2013)

I believe this was formerly The Aquarium (an Edlins Pub), it was still going strong in the '60s.

By Gil Tipping (25/07/2013)

Definitely not the Aquarium. That was my local in the early '70s. It was in Steine Street. Looks like a block of flats now!

By Barry E (26/07/2013)

I was lucky enough to live above The Pier on the 1st floor, with the large balcony, between 1970 and 1975. It was an amazing flat with wooden floors throughout, 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. I also took the front corner bedroom and could sit up in bed and see the sea. Mind you when The Hungry Years opened I could hear the words to every song until 1 or 2 o'clock in the morning and this coupled with the bright street lights took a little getting used to. But having a balcony which faced the sea, with the Aquarium below (now the Sea Life Centre) and The Palace Pier (now Brighton Pier) was amazing. Plus the buses ran every few minutes to where ever you wanted to go in Brighton. Happy Days.

By Paul Robot (11/06/2014)

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