Albion Street

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Albion Street' page

Community spirit in the 1930s

From an interview with Mr. W. G. Holmes

Eventually we moved to a house of our own in Albion Cottages, an L shaped alley with one end in Albion Hill and one in Albion Street. There was a row of houses on the eastern side of the alley, with a general yard at the northern end and Tamplins' Brewery stables at the southern end, the backyard walls of Albion Street on the western end. I lived there until I was ten, when our house was condemned we moved into Manor Farm in March 1936. The whole of Albion Cottages was not condemned at this time, only our house and the house next door. The remaining houses were refurbished and were not demolished until I think around 1960.

There was a community spirit, engendered of course by the fact of all being in the same boat . Certainly for us children it was obligatory that the elder children looked after the younger ones when we went to the beach, or to the Race Hill for the day, packed off with a bottle of made up lemonade and sandwiches. Unlike some, I cannot say that I look back on those days with any affection. The memories I have are of being damned cold in winter, suffering chilblained ears which bled, having rickĀ­ets through my poor diet and certainly not being over protected by my parents.

Reproduced with permission from 'Back Street Brighton' published by QueenSpark Books and the Lewis Cohen Urban Studies Centre
This page was added on 03/11/2006.
Comments about this page

My great great grandfather, Thomas Packham lived in Albion Street in the 1840s. He was born in Wadhurst, the son of George Packham of Mayfield. Tradition asserts that he arrived in Brighton with a sack over his back and a shilling in his pocket. He was an ostler and probably worked for Tamplins when they had a stable where the pub is now. He finished in Brighton Workhouse, near St. Nicholas Church. His son George did rather better and bought houses. The wife of Thomas took in washing: the staple occupation those days. His first born, Mary Anne lived in Carlton Row - awful place those days. In the 1840s people kept pigs in Albion Street. Thomas's son Frederick died in the Elm Grove Workhouse. So Thomas's shilling didn't do him much good!

By MAURICE PACKHAM (09/02/2010)

I lived in Albion cottages - no2, No1 was just a garage I think, with an outside loo and a mangle which is all I  can remember, apart from directly above us in Richmond Steet was the family that ran a chimney sweeping firm. My grandparents lived in Albion Street the house in which I was born, I do remember playing in the old bomb sites in Carlton hill and went to Sussex Street school. I also remember the little shop on the bottom of Albion Hill on the corner of Phoenix Place.  Also in the cottages was an area that belonged to, I think, an old school or church in Richmond terrace which we did not like to pass at night as it was so dark. We moved when I was 6 or 7 to Park Street.

By Mary Taylor (27/05/2013)

I was born in Grand Parade.  We moved to Albion St in 1955 when I was 8;  we lived at no 49 opposite Saunders & Watts the builders. I remember the little shop at the bottom of Albion Hill,  I think it was Mrs Grice. I also remember the chimney sweep, he was called Marshall. I went to Calton Hill school then on to Queen's Park school, before moving to The Manor in 1960

By Roger Hall (20/10/2013)

Thank you so much for sharing your memories of Albion Cottages.  My 2xgreat Grandparents lived in number 15 between 1871 and 1881 and apart from a couple of images found online, it is so hard to imagine what it was like to live in their house.  Were they all 2 up/2 down built and was there a toilet per house does anyone know?  I really appreciate any details anyone can share on this part of Brighton.

By Angela Shearing (10/11/2013)

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