Fascinating Facts

Quakers Croft

Before the Royal Pavilion Estate was built, there was believed to be a Quaker site, which can be seen on the Bishop’s Map of 1803 where there is an area called Quakers Croft. Quaker meeting house moved in 1805 to its current location in Meeting House Lane from the location of the pavilion, strongly suggesting that the burial site was in use until 1805. During renovation works at Brighton Dome Corn Exchange, a total of 18 burials were found - as of August 2017 – at the location where the former Quaker Burial site was believed to be. A team of 5 archaeologists from Archaeology South-East carried out excavations of the 18 skeletons, with the grounds believed to be in use as a Quaker burial site for 50 years, with an  interview. explaining that this short period may be the reason for the fairly small number of burials.

Brighton Dome Quaker Burial  Excavation August 2017

Let there be light

In 1881, Brighton-based inventor Magnus Volk installed a telephone mouthpiece on the conference speaker’s podium in the Concert Hall, which was connected to eight listening devices on Volk’s exhibition stand at the adjacent Royal Pavilion. Volk also fitted the Corn Exchange with electric lights in the 1880s. His work can still be experienced in Brighton today aboard the Volks Railway - the world's oldest operating electric railroad.

Brighton Dome History Chandelier. The Grand Re-opening Ball in the Music Room of the Royal Pavilion 1851 – Aaron Penley

The Grand Re-opening Ball in the Music Room of the Royal Pavilion 1851 by Aaron Penley

Suffragette city

At the turn of the last century, the Brighton Women’s Social & Political Union was one of the country's most active regional branches of the movement and they regularly disturbed political meetings held at Brighton Dome or the Royal Pavilion. In January 1910, two suffragettes (Eva Bourne and Mary Leigh) were arrested at Brighton Dome. They were discovered hiding inside the venue’s organ, about to cry out ‘Votes for Women’ through the pipes to disrupt Prime Minister Asquith’s speech. More > 

Suffragette Argus Article

A premier visit

Winston Churchill visited Brighton Dome in October 1947 for the post-war Conservative Party Conference.

Winston Churchill at Brighton Dome

Sporting spectacle

Over the years the Dome buildings have been used for all kinds of sporting events including static cycle races, roller-skating, boxing and wrestling.

Image Credit: The Royal Pavilion & Museums, Brighton

Brighton Rockers Roller Derby at Brighton Dome

Photo: John Hesse

Cover story

In 2004, the Concert Hall was transformed into a giant marble by the artist Graeme Gilmour who used 12 kilometres of cling-film to shrink-wrap the building.