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bits and pieces on Brighton and thee beyond…..

Archive for March, 2009


Posted by Sara on March 29, 2009


Spring is definitely here! Went for a quick walk along the beach today and was delighted to hear the haunting strains of the Victorian organ accompanying Brighton’s beautiful Electric Golden Gallopers.


But I, being poor, have only my dreams;

I have spread my dreams under your feet;

Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

W.B Yeats

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The Rock Ola

Posted by Sara on March 29, 2009

28.03.2009 Rock Ola Cafe, Tidy Street, Brighton.

roknroll1 This is our third visit to this café in the last year and it never disappoints. The Rock Ola café is a family run affair tucked away on Tidy street , just round the back of the North Laines . As you’d expect from the name, there is a distinct 50’s flair to the interior; from the retro ‘Diner Style’ Formica tables with pastel pink and blue leatherette stools to the beautiful old juke box that still works and is free to use.

rocintThe brightly painted walls are a treasure trove of Rock’n’Roll memorabilia and assorted oddments, including a framed screengrab of PJ Proby and a signed Kate Bush album, rather incongruously positioned on a wall covered by Beatle portraits and a Sergeant Pepper poster; though on reflection the thematic mismatch of Bush and Celine Dion, mixed in with Buddy Holly and Elvis, makes the place more genuine than most 50’s diners you get.

insideroc I ordered the Vegetarian Breakfast, an all day affair comprising of egg, veggie burger (or veggie bacon) hash browns (or fries) tomato (or beans) sausage and toast, at £4.95. D had the All Day American; a transatlantic combination of sweet and savoury with 2x egg, 2x bacon, sausage, 2 pattie burgers, tomato and buttermilk pancakes with maple syrup, all for £5.95. We also opted for an extra side order of cheesy chips.

rockolamerican Service is friendly and though the food takes a little while to show, it’s good to know it’s  freshly cooked.  Breakfast looks good, perfectly presented on multi-coloured plates; piping hot and delicious. The hash browns let the side down a bit, as they obviously came out of a packet but they tasted ok and the eggs were cooked perfect. Toast was just how I like it; chunky, white and dripping in butter.The cheesy chips were a treat too. Thick and hot and smothered in luscious dripping cheddar.

rockveggieAs well as Breakfasts served all day, including a Vegan option, Rock Ola offers a variety of sandwiches, sweets and lunchtime treats. Specials today were Soup of the Day with bread and butter for £3.50 and Chicken casserole with potatoes and veg for £5.95. Drinks are all the usual, including a yummy range of milk shakes and the special homemade pink lemonade, which is delicious.

There is constant supply of some great rock and roll adding to the ambience. One other cool thing about this place is you don’t even need to leave to get to the best of Brighton’s record / book stores, as there’s a doorway, aptly called Rock ‘n’ Roll Alley, to the left of the seating area, that leads you straight to The Singles Bar and on into Wax Factor.


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Tuesday’s Child

Posted by Sara on March 24, 2009

tuesday1 It’s all getting a bit Night Gallery here at Thee Nook as we welcome all you art lovers to our next painting to introduce our next story…….

This little lady was painted about a year ago, on a canvas I had found on a skip -which I just started throwing ink at until her face appeared. I love the contrast of her beatific expression against the slashing violence of the ink splashes. I wanted to do the same with words and Tuesday’s Child was the result. Not sure I succeeded but I’m pleased with this story nonetheless. To read it visit our sister blog: Shadows Time.


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Posted by Sara on March 22, 2009


This stuff’s all from Bond St Laine….



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and then some……

Posted by Sara on March 15, 2009

Been taking it easy this weekend; just meandering around in the sun, enjoying the weather and local art. This stuff is from the Kensington St, North Laines area and is amazing….






This next one’s from Circus St….


And this from Cranks DIY Cycle shop, Chapel St…


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New Blog!

Posted by Sara on March 11, 2009

Check out our new sister blog – Shadows Time a blog devoted to original poems and fiction based on all things Lovecraftian, Gothic and Horrorful.  First up is a story I recently entered into a Cthulhu Mythos writing competition (and won!). It’s called One Thousand Dead Names. Just click on the link above or listed right in our blogroll.

And if that’s not enough supernatural shenanigans for you then check out our about page for info on more ghostly goings on this April, courtesy of Brighton’s very own ghost walker, Rob Marks. Or visit: http://www.ghostwalkbrighton.co.uk/7.html for updates.



“The Universe is full of magical things, patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.”

Eden Phillpotts 1862-1960.

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Posted by Sara on March 9, 2009

Lining paths across our commons

facing out to sea,

offering the fatigued mass a

place at once to be.

To all a seat of comfort

but it can be more,

loved ones gone but not forgotten

by the sandy shore,

on top of hill tops in the downs

in parks and cemeteries,

around town squares, in beer gardens

beneath wheezing trees.

For me a chance to glance surroundings

whilst others share discourse,

sweet nothings shared amongst laughter

before the strained divorce.

By Dominic


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Bubble Kitschen

Posted by Sara on March 8, 2009

08.03.2009 Bubble Kitschen, Kensington Gardens, Brighton.

bubble-kitschen1Jubilee Library have emailed to say my Reserved Item (Teatro Grottesco by Thomas Ligotti) is now up for grabs so we hastily make our way over to the literary side of town, deciding to stop for a bite to eat along away. Bubble Kitschen is a small family run café tucked away in the Lanes and specialises in home cooked, organic food, with a range of luncheon treats and all day breakfasts on offer. This being The Lanes, breakfast won’t come cheap but their prices seem reasonable and there is a good selection to choose from.

The seating area is tiny so there’s a fair bit of “excuse me” and “how do you do dahs” going on as we circumnavigate our way around tables, chairs and fellow diners to reach the counter to order, but, once safely ensconced in our big wood chairs at a nice table by the window, the congenial atmosphere, helped along by the muted 50’s rock ‘n’ roll playing in the background, makes it easy to relax.

I’ve ordered the Vegetarian breakfast with coffee and D the Full English with rooibos tea. Both breakfasts are priced at £5.95 and drinks are extra. Though the inside is small, it’s cheerful and fun, with a bright turquoise blue interior and chalked up menus on the walls, complemented by dark blue and white polka dotted table clothes and an array of oddments strung up around the windows.

We particularly liked the circular bookcase that doubles as a table, and has a secret drawer for secret messages (not so secret now I guess) – where an interesting assortment of annuals, including 1980’s Happy Days and The Monkees, vie for space alongside a collection of well thumbed Pan Paperback and New English Library editions of The Sweeny and The Prisoner.

Food arrives within 10 minutes or so and we tuck in. The plates are big and so are the portions. Both breakfasts consist of one egg, sausage, bacon, mushrooms, bubble and squeak, tomatoes, beans and toast, though obviously the vegetarian has veggie bacon and sausage. Condiments on offer are ketchup, Brown sauce (Daddies) and Coleman’s mustard.

Bubble Full English

Bubble Full English

There is a comforting home grown flavour to the food; I thought the tomatoes were particularly flavourful compared to many cafes, likewise the bubble and squeak was very potatoey tasting and had a nice texture – I’m never actually sure what bubble and squeak is meant to taste like but this one at least tasted of something, which is more than I can say for most. The sausages are from the Brighton Sausage company and both were delicious. On the down side I would have liked the food a little warmer, particularly the beans, and the eggs tasted delicious, but they looked a bit weird. D said the bacon was the best he has ever tasted (I think he’s said that a few times before…) and the coffee and tea were excellent.

Service was laid back and friendly and the toilets, though small, are perfectly formed. There are even organicy, environmentally friendly looking complimentary nappies available in the ladies, which is a thoughtful touch. (No, I don’t have kids and have no idea what environmentally friendly nappies look like but I reckon they look like these did).

Bubble Kitschen

Bubble Kitschen


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Posted by Sara on March 6, 2009


George was different

to others, like the way he

walked and strangely

stroked his hair,

he muttered in muffled tones

whilst avoiding other’s

glare, bless our George. This

made others wonder why

he seemed so distant what

did he ponder, on and on

this went and then at school

the others thought who’s

the fool, what’s the

story with George?

So they poked him, laughed

and pulled his hair and hid

his scarfe, he’d look upset

they didn’t care. Then

came the punches the

kicks and slaps during

lunches, no mercy shown

the barrage rained on!

In fear George fled

but the others came and

battered him till he bled,

till nothing more was said

by poor old George.


by Dominic.




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West Pier

Posted by Sara on March 1, 2009

Piers, Proms and Palaces; The West Pier and Brighton Seafront Story


We love the West Pier! Even in its current state of ancient, delapidated decrepitude it is a magnificent and magical structure. Last Sunday 21st February we were lucky enough to go on a free taster tour of the West Pier and seafront promenade, organised by the Brighton West Pier Trust.

It was a beautiful sunny day (for a change!) and our guide for the tour was Geoffrey Mead. The tour lasted about and hour and a half, during which we learnt about the architecture and stories behind Briton’s most famous pier and of seaside piers in general.

Construction on the West Pier commenced Easter Monday 1864 and was designed and engineered by Eugenius Birch. Looking across its rusted shell outlined against the ocean’s horizon, you can really appreciate the beautiful symmetry of the structure which is all the more remarkable when you learn all the pylons were placed by eye and put in by hand.


The main purpose of the Pier was to see and be seen and throughout the 1800’s and early 1900’s various structures were added to enhance this Victorian catwalk. As we made our way along the seafront to the Brighton Fishing museum, we learnt more about Brighton’s transient population and fishing heritage; a town that has evolved from a nocturnal culture built upon tidal patterns and worked by the moon, unlike its more heliocentric, agriculturally based neighbours.


The story behind the West Pier’s decline also provides a fascinating insight into changing fortunes of the British seaside and as we finished up in the Fishing Museum we were told more about the future plans for the Pier, including the i360 and restoration options. This still continues to be a contentious issue, and for another side of the story click here.


There was an opportunity to ask questions at the end and to find out more about the work of the West Pier Trust. Our guide’s enthusiasm and knowledge of Brighton’s geography and the Pier in particular really brought its history to life. This particular walk was a one off but from March 8th 2009 tours will be taking place every Sunday at 11am. Tickets will cost £5.


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