17 June, 2007

Bustling Brighton

Brighton is the Queen of the Watering Places, with a lot going on in the summer months. On Saturday Kemp Town Carnival took place with music and stalls and a French Market. I was down with Mark staying at Mike and Ken's flat in Kemp Town (thanks fellas!). The weather was kind and the stalls were good, including the coöp stall, which was giving away a free fair trade banana to everyone who signed a petition to make trade fair. They had almost run out of bananas by 4:00 after bringing 22 cases of bananas! Still, I hope the Kemp Town store did well from the day. We met with Mike and Tony at the carnival and visited the stalls and St Georges Church Kemp Town, a dignified georgian church with a beautiful painted rood and reredos with the obligatory decalogue, creed and Lord's Prayer written down. The blue colour scheme was very calming. This is the second oldest church in Brighton (the oldest is the 14th Century St Nicholas) most of Brighton's churches being Victorian to cope with the growing population as Brighton became a resort and industrial town.

We spent the late afternoon in the pub then had a walk on the pier. We were going to go on the dodgems but it would have been £6 to go on one car for the two of us, although the same for two of us in two cars, so we didn't. Brighton Pier need to get their prices sorted out I think. We had dinner then walked down the sea front to the Metropole Hotel and back. We went back to the pub later.

On the Sunday we walked up through the town Calling in at the Oxfam and Books for Amnesty bookshops. We walked through the Pavillion grounds and saw the fountains playing on the steine, which is a very rare sight (see illustrations) . We also saw the cyclists on the London to Brighton run. 27000 cyclists do the run each year, although at the finish line I saw one man on a motor scooter. He had lost his way, and ended up on the route.

After a short snooze on the pier with a Mr Whippy for Mark (I refused the Mr Whippy but balked at the price of a proper cornet) we went back to the flat to tidy up, and left town. The cyclists were still arriving.

The other illustration is the view towards the seven sisters cliffs from the pier.

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