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View to Brighton Pier from the New Steine, Brighton

Archive for March, 2011

Brighton’s festivals by the sea

Spring madness

Spring madness

Usually it’s Summers that people associate most with festivals. Well, Brighton has got two events back-to-back that turn this on its head. Spring is on its way and with it are the Brighton Festival and The Great Escape, Brighton’s festivals by the sea.

The Brighton Festival gets underway in May, with the first of hundreds of performances by top name entertainers. And there’s its bastard brother, the Fringe Festival. Roommates but not bedfellows, the two festivals help contrast the famous with the freaky.

Headline acts at the festival are DJ Shadow, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, Asian Dub Foundation, and headman, voodoo looney and musical genius, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry.

The Fringe is no less colourful, actually it’s set to be properly odd: on one night you’ve the Netherlands National Theatre, on another you’ll get a look at the world’s best portable crazy golf course. There’s the Rotten Wedding – an interactive wedding reception, and projects running cross the city by the Youth Arts Festival.

 Brighton's music festival by the sea

Brighton's music festival by the sea

With this under your belt – trust us, you couldn’t possibly see everything, even if you did take a holiday in Brighton for the entire month – your best bet is to stay in festival mode all the way through May. Because before you know it, you’ll be thrown in at the deep end of another one of Brighton’s festivals by the sea, The Great Escape.

Some of the worlds’ top acts descend on Brighton: Paulo Nutini, The Vaccines, Friendly Fires, Hauschka, Katy B -this festival is rammed.During the three days from 12-14 May there’s 300 artists playing at 30 venues and a convention of speakers from the music industry.

So it’s begun! Delegates can get discounted rooms at the hotel, although with all the after-parties going on, it could be that they don’t get in much before dawn anyway…

Brighton Festival 7-29 May

Brighton Fringe 7-30 May

The Great Escape 12-14 May

Discounted rooms for the festival – 20% off bookings of 2 nights!

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Visiting Brighton you’ll see the oddest things

With the moon closer to Earth than it has been for 20 years, we’ve had some strange happenings here in Brighton. Ultra-low tides have revealed parts of the beach you never get to see, and as we’ve had  great weather, already people are visiting Brighton to get a spot between the piers.

Just incase you missed it, here’s a few pictures and a video of what’s been happening – when someone says let’s ride between the piers, they don’t usually mean along the beach…

Cycling on Brighton beach!

Take a look at our Facebook page for the video,and give it a ‘Like’ but for now here’s a few images of the amazing weather we’ve been having, enjoy!

Hove at dawn - Image: M Pawlak

Hove at dawn - Image: M Pawlak

Pier at dawn - Image: M Pawlak

Pier at dawn - Image: M Pawlak

Early morning stroll - Image: M Pawlak

Early morning stroll - Image: M Pawlak

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Aung San Suu Kyi: Who?

Image- Stuart Isett - isett.com

Image- Stuart Isett - isett.com

Staying in Brighton you can’t help but be whisked along by the Brighton Festival. And if you haven’t heard yet, this year’s guest director is the civil rights protestor Aung San Suu Kyi. Now if you are drawing breath and asking: “Who?” then here’s some background on the lady and her remarkable life:

Aung was born the daughter of a hero of Burmese independence, Aung San, who was assassinated when she was only two years old. Having studied at Oxford she married an Englishman, before returning home to help her sick mother.

As the Burmese were fighting for democracy, Aung gave speeches across Burma in support. She went on to lead her opposition party. But the Burmese military, realising the threat she posed, acted against her.  Banned from standing for election, imprisoned and generaly abused by the leadership, she still won a massive share of the votes.

Well, the government kept power and kept her locked up whenever it could – it even attempted to assassinate her at one point.

Winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, The Sakharov Prize and the United States Presidential Medal of Freedom, she is possibly the world’s best knows political activist . And after a total of 15 years in detention, she was released in November 2010.

brighton-festival-2011

Freedom and creativity - here comes the Brighton festival!

Why the Festival? Well, it’s more about her inspiration to people fighting for their rights, in whichever form this may take. Oh, and the Burmese government is unlikely to let her back in to the country if she leaves. So, guess what? She’s staying and continuing to fight for freedom!

The festival takes place from7-29 May, and if you’ve never spent any of your weekends in Brighton, pick one this May. The Festival and the Fringe Festival define this crazy, mixed up, spun-out little bastion of creativity.

And for more about this remarkable woman, take a look at The Burma Campaign UK’s website – if you have a political bone in your body , or campaign for rights for the LGBT community, you will be inspired…

Enjoy more weekends staying in Brighton hotels with our special offers .

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This weekend in Brighton: The annual Sussex Beer and Cider Festival

Well, I say in town, it’s in Hove actually. But that’s hardly a bad thing. Just hop on any bus from Churchill square, or walk along the seafront – when you read the end of the grassy bit (Hove lawns) take a right into town one block, and you’ll find yourself at the town Hall.

Get supping!

Get supping!

As expected tickets are in short supply, so if you are spending this weekend in Brighton and want to enjoy some of the country’s greatest brews, this is your chance.

Tickets are available for morning and afternoon sessions – I guess there’s only so much ale and cider you can drink…

You’ll have plenty of trinkets to tempt you . And if you’re one of the growing tribe of cider drinkers, there’s likely to be 30 ciders to sample, and for those who prefer pear, there’s 14 perries to taste.

As usual there are some amazing names to search out: Merry Moon Scary Pearry Perry (from Kent) and Springfield Red Dragon Cider (Monmouthshire) are our favourites. And there are a few winners among the ales, too: Legless Rambler, Hip Hop, Halfway to Heaven and Hanging Judge.

A weekend in Brighton is never complete without a pint in a Sussex pub, so if you struggle to get into Hove town hall, don’t worry: there’s plenty of places you can drown your sorrows!

Last minute hotel rooms in Brighton

More on the  Sussex Beer and Cider Festival

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Why Brighton could host the royal wedding

‘Could’ host the royal wedding, as in it’s a possibility that may have been realised – don’t start flapping and buying hats – you’re probably not invited anyway!

Even so, there’s no reason why this town of ours couldn’t have pulled it off- what better message to send the world than to do away with all that tradition, pomp and un-necessity and book out the Pavilion, with a reception in a marquee on the seafront.

Photo op for Brighton lovers

Photo op for Brighton lovers

And forget all the military bands and horses and swords, we’d have tranny stilt walkers with surfboards making the wedding arch of swords, and music by that nutter on the recycled drum kit – if you get the chance stop and listen to the man, he’s fantastic.

We’d have the official wedding photos taken on the pier, with Kate and Wills’ faces peering through the cardboard cut-outs of cartoon bathers, we’d even offer the royals discounted rooms in Brighton – just don’t book one for Harry, too rowdy for us!

It’s not as if there’s a shortage of places they could have their picture taken; the newly renovated bandstand in Hove has wedding parties queing up. Or just take them on the beach. Can you see it? Half way through the photo shoot by Testino, some student chilling between exams asks Prince Phillip if he’s got a light for the BBQ…

Then they could all drift along to Hove lawns for refreshments and a game of football: 1st Battalion the Welsh Guards vs Hove lifeguards and Spartan Fitness.

But no, it’s all happening up in London. So the least we could do is provide royal wedding discounts on our hotel rooms in Brighton – after all, you know every other American is already booking flights to the UK right now!

If you’re coming to the south coast we’ve royal wedding discounts for you! See you there.

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‘Winter Pride’ leads off another fun weekend in Brighton

Winter Pride 2011!

Winter Pride 2011!

Pride weekend is not the only weekend in Brighton worth coming here for:  Have you seen what’s going on and the events running during Winter Pride?

There’s top events running at Brighton’s top LGBT venues, so keep your eyes open for some fun and fabulous stuff  going on around town.

We’ve all the details on our sister LGBT Brighton blog

And plenty of Discounted rooms in Brighton

See you there!

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Bike weekends in Brighton: Roll up, Roll up!

Let's ride

Let's ride!

Weekends in Brighton are the perfect antidote to the seasonal flu we’ve all been suffering from, especially when you’ve got a bike and an afternoon free.

So what if you want to cycle when you are visiting Brighton? Can you just roll up (sorry) and hire a bike for the day? The simple answer is: Yes. And there’s moves afoot to roll-out (again) an official city-wide bike hire thingy.

But until Brighton gets its Boris Bikes, there are still a few opportunities for families coming to Brighton for the weekend to get on a bike and ride.

In the summer months there are several places to get a two-wheeler, and from spring you’ll see a couple of rental places spring put of hibernation from the arches just behind the sea front.

Let’s hope Boris Bikes don’t put these people out of business…

Brighton is one of those cycling towns the previous government invested money into, and it appears to have paid off. From the end of the Hove Lawns all the way to the Marina there’s cycle paths. And you’ll find them around town – even though they are confusing at first.

So if you are planning future weekends visiting Brighton, bring your bike. Or take a look at the links below to find the best in the Brighton Bike Business – they’ll soon have you up and running (riding, doh!).

Weekend breaks in Brighton

Rayment Cycles

Littlehampton Dutch Bike Shop

M’s Cycle Hire

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