Queen's Park

A potted history of the area

By Geoff Mead

This is a complex area in social terms. The earliest development was around the fringe of the German Spa and leisure grounds of Queen Adelaide's Park (King William IV's wife). Only one villa of a planned luxury estate was ever built - the Attree Villa - and that was scandalously demolished in the 1970's. The park itself survives as a green lung, with some fine trees, set in a lovely bowl shaped valley with a large duck-filled lake, a Victorian clock tower and a good cafe.

Early 20th century devopment
Early 20th century development around the fringes of the park is generally of the Tudor Vernacular Revival school of architecture, with lots of red brick, terracotta, and stained glass; away from the immediate surrounds housing is mostly red brick and/or rendered terraces. Most of this housing dates from the early years of the 20th century when the new electric trams were able to negotiate the steep Brighton hills that had defeated the horse-bus network.

A wide social spectrum
Further out still, the area blends into the inter-war council housing of Down terrace, the Victorian terraces of Hanover and the housing redevelopment zone along Eastern Road. It is an area that stretches across the social spectrum; from the Volvo-owning Guardian readers of West Drive, to the boy racers up on Pankhurst Avenue, to the socially committed Sussex students of bed-sit land in Queens Park Road.

This page was added on 22/03/2006.
Comments about this page
My mother and I moved to Brighton in early 1960 when I was about 14. I remember going to a school near the park which was called Queens Park. However, I see no mention of it! I have recalled so many memories from your website, but it would be great to hear about the school. I can only remember one teacher, a Mr Metcalfe, and a classmate Keith Globe who represented the school at boxing.
By Chris (20/11/2005)

I went to Queens Park School from 1945 to 1950 - before your time but I also remember Mr Metcalf and Miss Grey. At that time John Cole represented us in boxing.

By Rita Brashill (14/10/2006)

I too attended Queens Park Primary School from 1945-1950 and Mr Metcalfe is the one teacher I recall clearly. He was an extremely gifted master and I have many happy memories of the school and the area.

By Mike Broomfield (18/01/2007)

Before I changed schools and went to Moulsecoomb I did attend Queen's Park School between 1961 and 1962. Apart from Mr Metcalf, I remember Mr Moody took us for sport - when he bowled in cricket it was fast and hard, would have knocked your block off if you did not stop it! Instead of staying for school dinners, we bought our lunch in St James's Street, lovely hot meat pies - hmmm.

By Alan Noakes (13/10/2007)

I was also a pupil at Queen's Park School in the earily 1970s. Metcall still alive as far as I know - read his gas meter 3yrs ago! Nice to see some mention of a great but old school.

By Lee Burton (25/12/2007)

Re Chris 20.11.2005. Some more teachers for you. Mr Tibble headmaster, uncle mac as you said. Mr Ore. Mr Thomsett, art. Mr Peters, woodwork. Mr Toothill.  Mr Moody Mr Mitchell. Mrs Gray Miss Chevins, music. Mrs Reece, English and as for Keith his surname is Goble. Hope this brings back memories  left Queens Park 1960.

By David (02/03/2008)

Re David 02/03/2008 - went to Queen's Park School, too. Mr. Bunker was our first French language tutor, but didn't stay long owing to a general lack of interest. I, however, loved it and later acquired a great fondness for the country and its culture. I now live in France. There was a certain Monica in my class - 4A - who also excelled in French. Comment ça va, Monique?

By Terry (05/05/2008)

How about Park Street (Seniors) late war years? Should still be some around, can't think that I'm not the only grumpy old man.

By Arthur Dalby (27/09/2008)

'Mr Moody' welcomes the comments about the QP Secondary School, many of the ex pupils and staff meet for a reunion every few years - 'Met' is still going strong along with Messrs Hoare, Tolhurst, Krum, Tompsett. A great community school providing a good foundation for many Brightonians. I am now a governor of QP Junior school; it is odd visiting my old classroom nearly 50 years on!

By Bryan Moody (25/11/2008)

I went to QP school and left in 1975. Bert Hoare lived around the corner from me and I still occasionally bump into Ron Metcalfe. I remember some of my class mates, Carol Collins, Elaine Catt, Paula Terry, John Lawson. I did go to a reunion gathering at the King and Queen pub about nine years ago and saw many old faces. Looking back now, I have many happy memories of the school and the Queens Park area.

By Louise Crankshaw (27/05/2010)

I'm married to RONNIE COLEMAN. I love QPS bless him.

By Christine Coleman (06/02/2011)

My father also went to Queens Park and remembers Mr. Metcalfe, I think my father Ken Lavery went to Queens Park around 1950. Does anyone remember him, he would have been the sort of child always in trouble?

By Ken Lavery (01/04/2011)

My Dad, Tom Jones, went there too. Think he boxed under Mr Metcalfe.

By Michael Jones (08/09/2011)

My mother moved to No 2 Queen's Park Rise, when she was a baby. The house was brand new, and cost her widowed mother £750.  She lived there until WW2 finished, then emigrated to Canada as a war bride.  She went to school at St Mary's Hall in Eastern Road, as her father had been an officer in WW1.  Her name was Anne Gasston, and her mother (same name) painted the ceiling in the porch of St Peter's, in the Old Steine.

By Esther Landymore (05/08/2014)

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