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The Brighton Pavilion
Brighton is a seaside town in East Sussex. In 1997 it merged with Hove, and the merged authority became the City of Brighton and Hove in 2000.

LGBT history

In August 1822, George Wilson, a servant from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, was accused by a guardsman he had met in the Duke of Wellington public house in Pool Valley of having offered him a sovereign and two shillings to go with him onto the beach to "commit an unnatural crime".[1]

In 1836 Stanley Stokes died after cutting his own throat.

In the later 19th century the philanthropist Angela Burdett-Coutts spent part of each year at the Royal Albion Hotel with her companion Hannah. The couple were devoted to each other, socially recognized as a pair, and even sent joint Christmas cards. When Hannah died in 1878, Baroness Burdett-Coutts said she was utterly crushed by the loss of "my poor darling, the companion and sunshine of my life for 52 years".[1]

There was a Brighton CHE Group (founded 1972).

An article by John Montgomery in Gay News Sept 1973 [2] estimated the number of gays in the town to be 5,000.

In 1973 Sussex GLF planned a 'Think-In' for 12-14 October starting with a disco at the Stanford Arms Hotel [3].

Ivan Massow was born in Brighton.

in 1986 a television documentary programme reported that there was an estimated population of gay men in Brighton of 15,000 [4].

The 2001 census revealed that Brighton and Hove had the highest proportion of same-sex households in the country at 1.29%: some 2,544 individuals said that they lived with a person of the same sex.[5]

Brighton Pride is held every year, normally in August (1st September in 2012).

The Brighton Ourstory Project was set up to collect and preserve the lesbian and gay history community in the area, but closed in 2013.

The Brighton AIDS Memorial was unveiled in 2009.

In 2017 the Brighton Museum hosted an exhibition about the Museum of Transology, curated by E-J Scott.[6]

In 2022 the film My Policeman starring Harry Styles as a 1950s Brighton gay police officer, was set in the area of Brighton and adjoining Lewes District Council area.

Member of Parliament for the Brighton Kemptown Constitutency from 2017 to 2024 was Lloyd Russell-Moyle (Labour). He has been involved in a number of confrontational episodes in the House of Commons. In November 2018 he announced to the House of Commons that he was HIV positive [7]. Russell-Moyle was barred from standing in 2024 by the Labour Party [8] [9].

LGBT venues and resources

Brighton has long been noted for its active gay scene, with a large number of gay venues, several of them in the Kemp Town area. St James's Street hosts a number of gay venues, of which the Bulldog claims to be Brighton's longest-running gay bar. The Queen's Head, not far from St James's Street, was a gay pub for a number of years. Revenge, the Amsterdam and Legends are on the sea front, and Doctor Brighton's near the front.

MindOut is a mental health service run by and for local LGBT people.

The Allsorts Youth Project is for local young people.

Brighton and Hove LGBT Switchboard was set up in 1975.[10]

Brighton and Hove Sea Serpents is a gay rugby club, founded in 2015.[11]

Brighton and Hove Gay and Bi Men social group meet monthly [12].

Further reading

LGBT Brighton and Hove by Janet Cameron. Amberley Publishing, Stroud, 2009. isbn 978--184868-717-2.

External sites


  1. 1.0 1.1 Accessed: 2013-04-30. (Archived by WebCite® at
  2. Issue 31 p 9
  3. Gay News issue 32 20 Sept 1973
  4. Facing South TVS programme 31 Jan 1986
  5. Brighton 'has most gay couples'
  6. [ Brighton Musuem blog.
  7. (accessed 22 April 2024)
  8. (accessed 29 May 2024)
  9. The Spectator 4 June 2024 piece by Julie Burchill
  10. Brighton and Hove LGBT Switchboard
  11. Gareth Davies, "Landmark is city's first gay rugby team compete in inaugural match" Evening Argus, 22 February 2016.
  12. (accessed 20 March 2024)