Brighton Dirty Weekend
The original ‘dirty weekend’ destination of choice, for almost two hundred years, people have been coming to Brighton with the express intention of behaving badly and have far too much fun.
It all began in the late 1700s,with the spendthrift Prince Regent (who became King George IV), who used to visit Brighton as it was far from the all-seeing eyes of the royal court, and so proved to be the ideal spot to woo his paramour, Mrs Fitzherbert (a Catholic and so out of bounds to the protestant Prince). Crazy in love and unimpressed with the available real estate, he commissioned a brace of designers from Henry Holland to John Nash who spent the next three decades creating a decadent pleasuredome for him, the Royal Pavilion. With its Indian-inspired onion domes and Chinoiserie interior design, even today this is a remarkable testament to one man’s determination to have one hell of a party pad.
Ever since Londoners were able to reach Brighton by means of cheap rail travel in 1841, the city’s reputation as an easily-accessible, guaranteed good time was assured.
Fast-forward to modern day, the city’s clubs, bars and beach all help keep that decadent reputation alive. And for the dedicated pleasure-seeker, there are a few must-see spots to visit.
She Said Get laced into a curve hugging corset at Brighton’s favorite classy lingerie store. The staff know everything there is to know about exactly the right waspie, bustier or bra for you and their down-to-earth attitude over the toys section makes buying a brace of sexy accessories and, oh, go on then, the nurses outfit too, a positive joy. There’s a definite frisson to carrying one of their trademark black and pink ribbon-tied bags out of the store, women and men in the know give you that look of, ‘Ah, you’re in for a good time…’ Guaranteed to have you swaggering down the street.
Quadrophenia Alley The cult mod musical with soundtrack from The Who told the story of mods, rockers, drugs and a heck of a quick alleyway knee-trembler between Steph and Jimmy. The alleyway is between Little East Street and East Street, you’ll find plenty of Mod graffitti on the walls there, but surprisingly, no commemorative plaque. It’s used by locals so my advice would be to not try and re-live the movie moment. You almost certainly will get caught. Unless, of course, you’re faster than Jimmy and we all saw how that ended.
Nudist beach, between Peter Pan’s playground and the Marina. Of course, some people use this stretch of pebble beach for the sheer joy of healthy naked sunbathing. And others, well, some like to watch and others like to be seen. If you’re in a Letting It All Hang Out kind of mood then head to the east end of the beach to do so. It was the very first licensed nudist beach in the UK, so it could almost count as a sightseeing activity. And trust me, you very often see some quite amazing sights here.
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