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									Discover   Royal
           A cross-curricular Teacher Resource
           for all Key Stages
Discover the
Royal Pavilion
A cross-curricular Teacher Resource for all Key Stages

3    Introduction
4    Curriculum Links
6    Timeline of the Development of Brighton

7    Pre-Pavilion Brighton

9    Brighton, George and the building of the
     Royal Pavilion
11   Highlights of the Royal Pavilion
14   Chinoiserie
18   Innovation and technology in the Royal Pavilion
20   Dining and entertainment in the Royal Pavilion
22   The impact of the Royal Pavilion on Brighton during George IV’s lifetime

25 The Royal Pavilion in Victorian times
27 The development of Victorian Brighton
29 The impact of the Royal Pavilion on the development of modern Brighton

33   Suggested Activities
35   Primary source: ground floor plan of the Royal Pavilion
36   Primary source: map of Brighthelmstone, 1779
37   Primary source: map of Brighton, 1850
38   Schools at the Royal Pavilion
                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

Eccentric, extravagant, extraordinary …

One of the most exotically beautiful buildings in the British Isles, the Royal Pavilion is the
magnificent former seaside residence of King George IV. Its fantastic domes and spires
make it an easily recognisable icon, to both residents and visitors to Brighton & Hove alike.
The story of the Royal Pavilion includes parties, hospitals and flower shows, contains
influences from China, India and France, and includes characters as diverse as fishermen,
monarchs and soldiers. As a unique palace, with a fascinating history and breathtaking
decorations to discover, the Royal Pavilion has also played a key role in the development of
Brighton and its international reputation for over 200 years.

So how did a poor fishing town become the most fashionable coastal resort in Britain? What
was the vision behind the design of the Royal Pavilion? And how does the Royal Pavilion
continue to influence the character of Brighton & Hove to this day? In this publication, the
Learning Team for the Royal Pavilion & Museums, Brighton & Hove, hopes to make the Royal
Pavilion more accessible to teachers and their students by increasing their knowledge of the
Pavilion, its history and impact on Brighton. By providing teachers with a greater
understanding of the value of historic buildings and artefacts to inspire students’
engagement, creative thinking and learning, the resource also demonstrates the diverse
ways in which the Royal Pavilion can be used as a cross-curricular learning resource.

The resource is divided into three broad areas: pre-Pavilion Brighton, the Royal Pavilion and
post-Pavilion Brighton. It contains National Curriculum links, a timeline, discussion points,
suggested activities across the curriculum, primary resources for use in the classroom and
worksheets to support independent visits to the Pavilion … everything a teacher needs to
‘Discover the Royal Pavilion’.

    Discover the Royal Pavilion

    Curriculum Links
    A visit to the Royal Pavilion can
    fulfil many National Curriculum
    Art and Design
    Exploring and developing ideas
    • record and analyse first-hand observation and explore ideas for different purposes
    • discuss and question critically

    Evaluating and developing work
    • evaluate their own and others’ work, express opinions and make reasoned judgements

    Knowledge and understanding
    • recognise visual and tactile elements, including colour, pattern and texture, line and tone,
      shape, form and space, and how these elements can be used for different purposes
    • study materials and processes used in art, and how these can reveal ideas and intentions

    Breadth of study
    • explore a range of starting points for practical work
    • investigate art, craft and design in the locality, in a variety of genres, styles and traditions,
      and from a range of historical, social and cultural contexts

    Knowledge and understanding
    • recognise characteristic features of the periods and societies studied, including ideas,
      beliefs, and attitudes
    • know about the social, cultural, religious and ethnic diversity of the societies studied, in
      Britain and the wider world
    • consider the significance of the main events, people and changes studied

    Historical interpretation
    • evaluate interpretations

    Historical enquiry
    • know how to find out about the events, people and changes studied from a range of
      information sources, including photographs, artefacts, historic buildings

                                                                  Discover the Royal Pavilion
Organisation and communication
• recall, prioritise and select historical information
• accurately select and use chronological conventions and historical vocabulary
  appropriate to the periods studied, to organise historical information

Breadth of study
• investigate how an aspect of the local area has changed over a long period of time, or
  how the locality was affected by a significant national or local event or development, or by
  the work of a significant individual (KS2)
• investigate how expansion of trade and colonisation, industrialisation and political
  changes affected the United Kingdom, including the local area (KS3)

A visit to the Royal Pavilion can
also support learning across the
• Citizenship: think about the lives of people living in other places and times, and people
  with different values and customs
• Design and Technology: investigate and evaluate a range of familiar products, generate
  ideas for products after thinking about who will use them and what they will be used for
• English: encourage speaking and listening skills, develop specialist technical vocabulary,
  develop writing skills for a range of purposes based on first hand experience
• Geography: explore how places differ and change, and explain why changes happen and
  the issues that arise from these changes
• Music: respond to a range of musical and non-musical starting points
• PE: create and perform dances using a range of movement patterns, including those
  from different times, places and cultures
• Science: identify materials and describe their properties, explore the part science has
  played in the development of many useful things

    Discover the Royal Pavilion

    Timeline of the
    Development of Brighton
    1086        Domesday survey values Brighton at £12
    1514        French raiders burn Brighton to the ground
    1660–1705   Series of storms leads to severe coastal erosion and threatens the future of the town’s
                fishing industry
    1750        Dr Russell publishes ‘Dissertation in the use of Seawater in the Diseases of
                the Glands’
    1783        Prince of Wales first visits Brighton at the age of 21
    1785        Prince of Wales secretly and illegally marries Maria Fitzherbert
    1786        Prince of Wales rents a small farmhouse on the Steine
    1787        Henry Holland transforms the farmhouse into the Marine Pavilion
    1795        Prince of Wales marries Caroline of Brunswick
    1800        50–60 shops on North Street sell fashionable goods for Brighton’s new, wealthy inhabitants
    1807        Theatre Royal opens its doors for the first time
    1811        George, Prince of Wales, becomes Prince Regent
    1814        Sake Deen Mahomed opens Mahomed’s Baths
    1815–1823   John Nash engaged to remodel the Pavilion. Existing rooms are altered and notable
                additions include the Banqueting and Music Rooms and the Great Kitchen. The exterior is
                redesigned, inspired by Indian architecture. A lavish chinoiserie style dominates the interior.
    1816–1817   French chef Marie-Antoine Carême employed at the Royal Pavilion creating prolific meals
                with up to 60 dishes
    1820        Prince Regent becomes King George IV
    1823        Italian composer Rossini visits the Royal Pavilion
    1827        George IV visits Brighton for the last time
    1830        George IV dies. William IV and Queen Adelaide visit Brighton
    1837        Queen Victoria visits the Royal Pavilion for the first time
    1841        Arrival of the railway in Brighton
    1842        Queen Victoria visits the Royal Pavilion with Prince Albert and her two children
    1850        The Royal Pavilion is bought by Brighton Corporation for £53,000
    1866        Opening of the West Pier
    1867–1873   The Royal Stables and Riding House are transformed into a concert hall, corn exchange and
                a museum, art gallery and library
    1872        Opening of the Brighton Aquarium and Dolphinarium
    1883        Volk’s Electric Railway opens
    1896        Volk’s Daddy Longlegs can be seen off Brighton Beach
    1914–1918   The Royal Pavilion used as a military hospital for wounded Indian soldiers
    1920–1939   Pavilion used for public assemblies and entertainment
    1921        The Indian Gate and the Chattri are erected in memory of the Indian soldiers
    1940s       Restoration of the Royal Pavilion begins in earnest
    1964        Mods and Rockers clash on Brighton seafront
    1975        Arson attack on the Royal Pavilion severely damages the Music Room
    1987        Music Room is further damaged during the October storm
    Present day About 300,000 people visit the Royal Pavilion each year. Brighton & Hove is the most popular
                coastal destination for foreign visitors to the UK

                                                                     Discover the Royal Pavilion

Pre-Pavilion Brighton
In the Domesday survey of 1086 Bristemestune (Brighton) was
valued at £12 and was charged a tax of 4,000 herring, a figure
that testifies to its status as a small fishing town. The medieval
town was contained within East Street, West Street, and North
Street. St Nicholas Church at the top of Church Street served
as both a place of worship, St Nicholas being the patron saint
of fishermen, and as a beacon to guide fishing boats back to
shore. In June 1514 Brighthelmstone (another name for
Brighton) was burnt to the ground by French raiders during a
war between England and France. Only part of St Nicholas
Church and the medieval street pattern of what is now the
Lanes survived the attack.
                                                                     Model of a Hogboat
During the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1 (1558–1603) Brighton
had amassed a large fishing fleet and by 1660 was the
second largest town in Sussex. Brighton fishermen used
'Hogboats', which suited fishing conditions at Brighton. They
had a very wide beam making them stable in rough seas and
were easily hauled onto the shingle beaches. Some were
even cut in half and used as homes on the beach by the
poorest fishermen. By the mid 1700s, Brighton had sunk into
decline. Between 1665 and 1705 a series of great storms led to
severe coastal erosion, which destroyed large areas of the
seafront. The livelihood of the town was threatened as it
became increasingly difficult to set sail and bring fish ashore.
By 1740, Brighton’s population amounted to no more than
1,000 people.                                                        Dr Richard Russell FRS

Brighton’s transformation from a struggling fishing town to a
fashionable seaside resort began in 1750 with the publication
of a book by Dr Richard Russell of Lewes entitled
‘Dissertation in the Use of Seawater in the Diseases of the
Glands’. Dr Russell specialised in treating ailments such as
gout but also recognised the benefits of physical exercise for
people leading sedentary lives. He believed in the therapeutic
value of the iodine in sea water and the medicines he gave his
patients to drink included ingredients such as woodlice,
cuttlefish bones, crabs’ eyes, bicarbonate of soda, milk and
sea water. Dr Russell’s reputation, combined with Brighton’s
proximity to London (it only took three to five hours to travel
from London to Brighton) gave the town an advantage over
other seaside resorts and ensured its success as a
fashionable seaside resort for high society.

    Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                  The impact of Dr Russell’s endorsement of Brighton was
                                  immediate. Unemployed fishing families were quick to take
                                  advantage of opportunities to provide a range of services to
                                  wealthy visitors. Lodging houses sprang up around the town
                                  to accommodate Dr Russell’s patients, and an evolving
                                  building industry met the demand for lodging houses for the
                                  town’s new holiday-makers. But perhaps most famously, many
                                  fishermen and women found new employment as dippers and
                                  bathers. Dr Russell’s sea cure advocated the total submersion
                                  of the patient in the sea. Access to the sea was provided by
    The Bathing Place with
                                  bathing machines, small boxes on wheels in which the
    Smoaker's Machines, c. 1750   patients were seated while bathing attendants transported
                                  them from the beach to the water.

                                  Dippers (for women) and bathers (for men) were employed to
                                  make sure the patient’s head was dipped into the water. The
                                  most famous bather in Brighton was Smoaker Miles, who
                                  later taught the Prince of Wales to swim in the sea. Martha
                                  Gunn was Brighton’s most famous dipper. She lived in a
                                  house in East Street, and is buried in St Nicholas churchyard.
                                  Dipping took place all year round since cold water was
                                  considered to be good for the health. However indoor baths
                                  also developed from 1769 for those who were not brave
                                  enough to go in the sea all year round.

    Martha Gunn the Brighton
    Bather, c. 1800

                                  Activities and Ideas
                                      If you made a healthy drink, what would you put in it?

                                      How would Brighton’s fishermen and their families have
                                      viewed the wealthy visitors who came to the town to
                                      take Dr Russell’s sea water cure and bathe in the sea?

                                      Look at the map of Brighthelmstone dated 1779
                                      (page 36). Can you identify the medieval street pattern?
                                      What else can you see?

                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

Brighton, George and
the building of the
Royal Pavilion
George IV first visited the town shortly after coming of age in
1783, when he was still the Prince of Wales. He stayed with his
uncle, the Duke of Cumberland, at Grove House on the Steine.
He was prompted to visit on the advice of his physicians who
thought that the sea water might ease the swellings of the
glands in his neck. However another and perhaps stronger
appeal was the desire to escape the constraints of the stifling
court of his father. The attractions of Brighton were not purely
medicinal, for the Prince also enjoyed the lively company of
the circle of the Duke of Cumberland, the theatre, gambling
and the races. Throughout George’s lifetime, the town of
Brighton provided an escapist playground where he could
indulge all his passions: dining, music, gambling and women.

Brighton’s distance from the Royal Court in London meant           George IV
that the town also provided a discreet location for the Prince
to enjoy liaisons with his long-time companion Maria
Fitzherbert. The Prince had secretly married Maria in 1785, but
the marriage was declared illegal because descendents of
George III were not allowed to marry without permission from
the monarch. The Prince eventually agreed to take a more
appropriate wife and in 1795 he married his cousin Princess
Caroline of Brunswick. Despite the birth of their daughter
Charlotte in 1796, it was a loveless marriage. The Prince had
many mistresses throughout his life, the most enduring of
which was Maria Fitzherbert, for whom he built Steine House
(now the YMCA), which was conveniently near the Prince’s           The Marine Pavilion can be seen
residence.                                                         to the left of the Steine

After the Prince’s first visit to Brighton, George rented a
‘superior farmhouse’ on the Steine, from local landowner
Thomas Kemp. In 1787 the Prince asked architect Henry
Holland to transform the farmhouse. The resulting small neo-
classical structure with a central domed rotunda and glazed
tile exterior was known as the Marine Pavilion. Although not
as audacious as its later incarnation, the Marine Pavilion
made quite a statement against its neighbouring buildings of
brick and stone.

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                          The transformation of Holland’s Pavilion did not commence
                                          until 1815, by which time the Prince had become Regent. The
                                          chosen architect was John Nash. The entire building, both the
                                          structure and the elaborate internal decorations, took seven
                                          years to complete and was finally finished in 1823. The
                                          evolution of the Pavilion from the Marine Pavilion to the grand
                                          oriental design of John Nash mirrors the changing status of
                                          George from Prince of Wales to Prince Regent (from 1811) and
                                          finally to King George IV (from 1820). The Pavilion and its
     The Pavilion at Brighton, c. 1810.
                                          grounds not only became grander to reflect the status of a
     By 1810, the Royal Pavilion          monarch, but also more private in order to shield the King
     estate was surrounded by             from the critical eyes of the press and the public. George lived
     railings to ensure the Prince’s      in a turbulent historical period, which experienced both the
     privacy                              American and French Revolutions. People in Britain worried
                                          that what had happened in France might be repeated in
                                          Britain. George’s decadent antics did nothing to quell this

                                          The building of the Royal Pavilion also coincided with Britain’s
                                          war with France (the Napoleonic Wars, 1803–1815). The war
                                          led to increased taxation, a reduction in exports due to
                                          blockades, unemployment and inflation. In this context, it is
                                          unsurprising that the extravagant lifestyle of the Prince
                                          angered many of his own subjects and ministers who felt that
                                          his profligacy was disgraceful in the face of such poverty.

                                          Activities and Ideas
                                              Why did George IV choose Brighton as his favourite
                                              holiday resort?

                                              How many streets in Brighton can you find that are
                                              named after George IV and his family?

                                              Write a profile of George IV, describing his character and
                                              the key events in his life.

                                                                  Discover the Royal Pavilion

Highlights of the
Royal Pavilion
Entrance Hall In great houses this room was often
decorated and furnished to impress guests, but in the Pavilion
it was conceived to surprise; it only hints at what is to come.

The Long Gallery The visitor today passes into the Long
Gallery through a wide doorway over which originally ran a
concealed staircase for servants. This bridge staircase
enabled servants to move between the north and south ends
of the Pavilion without being seen by guests. The Long Gallery
provided an area in which to promenade. Guests would walk
and converse, admiring the furnishings and décor.

The Banqueting Room provided a place where a host
could display his wealth and impress his guests. The table is
set for dessert and George IV’s armchair can be seen in the
middle of the seating arrangement. The huge domed ceiling is
decorated with the exotic foliage of a plantain tree. Some
elements are in three-dimensional copper, the rest is painted
to create a trompe l’oeil effect. Hanging below the dome is an
enormous carved and silvered dragon from which is
suspended a crystal chandelier measuring nine metres in
height and weighing one ton.

The Great Kitchen was very modern for its time and was
equipped with the latest kitchen technology. A large and airy
room, the Great Kitchen was a change from the stuffy, airless,
gloomy kitchens of many large houses. Similarly, its proximity
to the Banqueting Room was unusual as kitchens were more
commonly located at some distance to reduce the risk of fire
and smells. The arrangement in the Pavilion ensured that food
was served hot.

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                   The Banqueting Room Gallery The decoration in this
                                   room is toned down not only to contrast with the Banqueting
                                   Room, but also to create a calm, relaxing atmosphere. Guests
                                   would withdraw to this room after eating. Ladies would retire
                                   first, leaving the gentlemen to their port and cigars. Games
                                   such as cards, backgammon and chess would be played here.
                                   Palm trees, made of cast iron, covered in carved wood,
                                   support the upper floor.

                                   The Saloon was originally designed as the Pavilion’s main
                                   reception room. The room today contains a variety of
                                   influences: arches of Indian inspiration crown the French
                                   windows, whilst the walls contain panels of Chinese
                                   wallpaper. The couch is styled as an Egyptian river boat in
                                   patriotic homage to Lord Nelson’s victory in the Battle of the
                                   Nile in 1798.

                                   The Music Room Gallery Like the Banqueting Room
                                   Gallery, this room provided calm after the grandeur of the
                                   main state rooms. The room would have been used for small
                                   concerts and recitals. The carpet could also be removed to
                                   allow the floor to be chalked for dancing.

                                   The Music Room Music was a major form of
                                   entertainment at the Royal Pavilion and the Music Room was
                                   designed to enhance the guests’ enjoyment. A canopy of
                                   imitation bamboo hangs over the huge organ and the opposite
                                   wall, giving the impression of a tent. The domed ceiling is
                                   decorated with 26,000 plaster cockleshells covered in 18 carat
                                   gold. Nine lotus shaped chandeliers are suspended from the
                                   ceiling, and in total there are around 180 dragons and
                                   serpents decorating the room.

                                                                  Discover the Royal Pavilion

The King’s Apartments The suite consisted of a
bedroom, library, anteroom and bathroom (the last room no
longer exists), and were the King’s private rooms. Only the
anteroom was ever seen by the public, acting as a waiting
room for those seeking private consultation with the King.
Green walls are embellished with a complicated design of
dragons, dolphins, birds and flowers. The rooms express the
deeper, more reflective side of the King’s nature.

The Yellow Bow Rooms Formerly the bedrooms of
George IV’s brothers, the Duke of York and Duke of Clarence,
this suite of rooms includes a lobby and a servant room.

Queen Victoria’s Apartments Queen Victoria’s
bedroom is located over the Entrance Hall, with four attic
rooms above to accommodate her dressers. The chamber
floor was adapted to accommodate Victoria’s two children and
Prince Albert who visited the Pavilion in 1842.

The South Galleries were used as breakfast rooms by
the Prince Regent’s resident guests. The apartments to the
left (east) side of the South Galleries had been used by the
Prince himself until infirmity forced him to move to the ground

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                       The Royal Pavilion is one of the best examples of chinoiserie in
                                       Britain and plays a crucial part in understanding George IV’s
                                       vision for the building. The fashion for chinoiserie was inter-
                                       linked with the activities of the various East Indian companies
                                       that were established across Europe from the 16th century
                                       onwards. The British East India Company was formed by a
                                       group of investors for the exploitation of trade with the East,
                                       Southeast Asia and India. The availability of imported goods
                                       such as silk, lacquer, bamboo and porcelain affected both
                                       interior and exterior design all over Europe.

                                       Many royal palaces in Europe had a room or a building with a
                                       chinoiserie interior, and by the 1750s a Chinese bedroom and
                                       dressing room were considered the height of fashion.
     Chinese Porcelain Vase,
                                       Although influenced by Chinese goods, the idea of chinoiserie
     1796–1820                         was rooted in the fantasy of a magical realm that appealed to
                                       the imagination of the European court. Chinoiserie depicts
                                       China as an idealised country, a kingdom of flowers and
                                       perpetual spring ruled over by a benevolent emperor. To British
                                       designers Chinese and Japanese dragons summed up all that
                                       was strange and wonderful about the East. These mythical
                                       beasts became common chinoiserie motifs. Other motifs
                                       included bells, birds, shells and Chinese figures, pagoda
                                       cresting, and pierced or fretted galleries. Many examples of
                                       these motifs can be found on wallpaper, ornaments, furniture
                                       and fittings in the Royal Pavilion.

                                       The exterior of the Royal Pavilion, with its
                                       domes and minarets was inspired by
                                       drawings of Indian architecture found in
     Detail of clerestory windows in
                                       Oriental Scenery, a collection of drawings by
     Entrance Hall                     Thomas and William Daniell who had
                                       travelled to India. Oriental Scenery was
                                       widely published and helped to
                                       popularise the Indian style. New
                                       industrial techniques of mass
                                       production continued this trend:
                                       transfer printed Chinese-style designs
                                       of tableware, especially blue and
                                       white, were cheap and popular by the
                                       1830s. A favourite was the willow
                                       pattern, developed about 1795 by
                                       Josiah Spode.

                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                                                   The Royal Pavilion

George IV was Britain’s greatest devotee of chinoiserie in the
19th century, and the fantastic and exotic decorative scheme
in the Royal Pavilion reflects his desire to impress members of
European courts as well as to entertain and delight his
friends. George’s phenomenal and exaggerated use of oriental
motifs in the Royal Pavilion heralded a reinvention of
chinoiserie in Britain. Previously, chinoiserie was considered a
playful style that was reserved for more private and informal
rooms such as bedrooms and tea pavilions. It was also a
fashion that was associated by critics with promiscuous
women, so the King’s patronage of the style must have
seemed shocking to many visitors to the Pavilion. Indeed,
there are many disparaging contemporary comments
regarding the effeminate interior. With the internal and
external decoration of the Royal Pavilion, George IV
transformed chinoiserie into a court style but, paradoxically,
advertised the building as a residence where the rules of court
did not apply. Chinoiserie was a symbol for the escapism that
the Royal Pavilion offered the King.

The rich colours, mythological creatures and dramatic lighting
in the Royal Pavilion produced an exhilarating atmosphere,
which was theatrical in spirit. Each room was designed to
create a different mood. The decorative schemes work from
floor to ceiling and increase in richness as the visitor
penetrates further into the building. Equally overwhelming
was the stifling, perfumed air that pervaded the building and
the luxurious Axminster carpets in the Banqueting Room,
Music Room and the Saloon, into which the feet of the guests
would literally have sunk. The building induced a sensory
overload that left many guests struggling to describe the
experience of visiting such an incredible place.

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                         This sense of fantasy combined with chinoiserie is evident in
                                         the optical illusions and decorative tricks that characterise the
                                         Long Gallery. Cast iron is made to look like bamboo and
                                         carefully placed mirrors reflect images across the gallery,
                                         exaggerating its length. Imitation Chinese bells hang from
                                         scrolls above trellises of imitation bamboo. The central
                                         skylight is decorated with dragons, flowers and the Chinese
                                         God of Thunder.

                                         The hand-painted Chinese wallpapers in the Adelaide Corridor
     Detail of the cast-iron staircase
                                         probably date from the second half of the 18th century. They
     in the Long Gallery                 are unique in being the only original Chinese papers left in
                                         situ in the building and have survived despite the physical
                                         wear and tear of a domestic area, and the harmful effects of
                                         varnishing in the Victorian period. The panoramic landscapes
                                         are filled with hunting scenes, processions of large figures,
                                         and a dragon boat festival over which the eight immortal
                                         Taoist gods preside.

                                         Perhaps unsurprisingly the most dramatic examples of
                                         chinoiserie are reserved for the main state rooms. In the
                                         Banqueting Room the centrepiece is the huge chandelier,
                                         held in the claws of a silvered dragon, which is surrounded by
     Detail of the original Chinese
                                         six smaller dragons that would have exhaled light through
     paper in the Adelaide Corridor      lotus glass shades. The effect would have been dazzling. The
                                         walls of the Banqueting Room were hung with large canvases
                                         painted with Chinese domestic scenes mounted in trompe
                                         l’oeil trellis frames. The elaborate furniture includes lamps
                                         with dragon mounts, sideboards with gilded dragons and
                                         canopies decorated with bells hang over the doors.

     Detail of the dragon holding the
     central chandelier in the
     Banqueting Room

                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

In the Music Room, the chinoiserie scheme reaches its
crescendo. The room is like a huge lacquered box lit by water
lily and dragon shaped gasoliers. Blazing crimson and gold
Chinese landscape murals framed by gigantic serpents and
winged dragons cover the walls. Trompe l’oeil landscapes
were often painted on walls in 18th century houses, but here
pillars, dragons, serpents and trellis work, rather, deceive the
eye. Drapes of blue and crimson satin at the floor to ceiling
windows are supported by dragons and serpents. The domed
ceiling of the Music Room is covered by 26,000 overlapping
cockleshells, reminiscent of the scales on snakeskin. Gilding
was used on the cockleshells to create an illusion of height;
this was achieved partly by the sizes of the cockleshells
diminishing towards the apex, and partly by changing the
tones of the gilding.

                                                                   The Music Room

Activities and Ideas
    Create your own chinoiserie wallpaper using motifs
    found in the Royal Pavilion

    Imagine that you are a friend of George IV and are
    visiting the Royal Pavilion for the first time. How would
    you describe the experience?

    Why was chinoiserie such a popular style?

    What does chinoiserie tell us about the way people
    viewed non-European countries in the 18th and
    19th centuries?

    What other goods were introduced to Britain as a result
    of the East India Companies’ trade links?

    What was the legacy of the British East India Company?

    What story is told through the willow pattern?

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

     Innovation and
     Technology in the
     Royal Pavilion
                                         The Prince Regent wanted the Royal Pavilion to be the
                                         ultimate in comfort and convenience, and there are many
                                         examples of how the Pavilion benefited from modern
                                         equipment and progressive technology. Nash’s remodelling of
                                         the Pavilion often involved ingenious solutions to structural
                                         problems and the use of materials previously not associated
                                         with interior design. For example, in order to give the Saloon a
                                         larger Indian inspired dome, a cast-iron structure was erected
                                         around it on which an iron frame for the new dome was
                                         rested, thus avoiding any damage to the ceiling of the dome
                                         below. Cast iron was also cleverly used in the Long Gallery
                                         where it allowed sturdy staircases to be constructed which
                                         looked like bamboo, in keeping with the gallery’s chinoiserie

                                         The King was enormously proud of the Great Kitchen, and
                                         guests were escorted to inspect this room, conceived by the
                                         King as a continuation of the Pavilion’s public apartments.
     The Saloon from Nash’s Views
                                         One of the key pieces of new technology in the kitchen was
     showing Nash’s use of a cast-       the steam table. It was fitted with a cast-iron top, and bound in
     iron frame to support the central   brass. Food, prepared and arranged on silver dishes, was kept
     dome                                warm on the table, which was covered with a cloth. This
                                         allowed numerous prepared dishes to be kept warm ready to
                                         be served in the Banqueting Room. The table was heated by
                                         the main and scullery boilers by means of an extensive copper
                                         piping system.

                                         On the south wall of the Great Kitchen was another example
                                         of innovation. The smokejack was a more sophisticated and
                                         efficient version of a Tudor spit. It was automatic, activated by
                                         the heat of the fire. Fitted with five 2-metre spits, the
                                         smokejack allowed the chef to prepare several different roasts
                                         simultaneously. The Great Kitchen also benefited from an ice
                                         house, which stood in the southwest corner of the grounds. In
     In this image of The Great
                                         cold winters ice was collected in carts from local ponds and
     Kitchen from Nash’s Views, the      streams, and placed in pits lined with layers of straw to
     steam table is in the centre and    provide insulation. In proper conditions ice could last all
     the smokejack can be seen to        summer, providing a continuous supply for culinary and
     the left                            medical uses.

                                                                    Discover the Royal Pavilion

Lighting by day and by night was crucial in creating the
dramatic atmosphere of the Pavilion’s elaborate interiors. The
Pavilion used a range of different lighting techniques
including wax candles, tallow (animal fat) candles and oil
lamps. There was a room dedicated to storing the huge
quantity of lighting supplies. The smoke from the numerous
chandeliers, lanterns and oil lamps that lit the interior so
brilliantly inevitably caused damage to the paintwork and
ceilings, requiring regular cleaning and re-painting to
maintain the splendour of the Pavilion. Gas lighting was
installed outside the Music Room in 1821 and used to light the
elliptical windows from the exterior, suffusing the interior with   ‘The Music Room, the Royal
soft colours.                                                       Pavilion: Grand Re-opening Ball
                                                                    of 1851’ by Aaron Penley
A final progressive piece of technology in George IV’s Pavilion
was the provision of water closets. This modest-sized Pavilion
had over 30 water closets and the ladies’ retiring room near
the Banqueting Room, had its own private water closets for
female dinner guests. The water closets throughout the
Pavilion were supplied with water from cisterns. Water was
pumped throughout the building through iron mains and lead
pipes by a forcing engine in the water tower, which was
located in the kitchen courtyard to the south.

Activities and Ideas
    What are the similarities and differences between the
    Great Kitchen in the Royal Pavilion and modern
    kitchens of today?

    What would it have been like to work in the Great
    Kitchen? What sort of tasks would servants in the Great
    Kitchen have performed?

    Why was gas lighting not used inside the Royal

    What new piece of equipment would you design for
    the Royal Pavilion? You are not allowed to use electricity
    or gas!

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

     Dining and
     Entertainment in the
     Royal Pavilion
                                       The preparation and consumption of food were key activities
                                       in the social life of the Royal Pavilion, and around a quarter of
                                       the space available was allocated to the Great Kitchen and the
                                       range of ancillary kitchens. Many elaborate banquets were
                                       held in the Pavilion. In 1816–17 the Prince Regent secured the
                                       services of the renowned French chef Marie-Antoine Carême
                                       who devised elaborate menus with as many as 60 dishes. On
                                       one occasion he prepared a menu of 116 dishes served in 36
                                       courses for the brother of the Tsar, Alexander the First of
                                       Russia. Dinner was served promptly at 6pm. Dinner guests
     The Banqueting Room from
                                       assembled in the galleries, where the Prince would join them.
     Nash’s Views. The Prince can be   On the announcement of dinner he would lead the way into
     seen seated on the right in the   the Banqueting Room accompanied by the highest ranking
     middle surrounded by his          women. George IV was instrumental in introducing the new
     guests                            fashion of ‘promiscuous seating’ which enabled him to sit
                                       close to the ladies of his choice. Rather than sitting at the
                                       head of the table, as tradition dictated, George IV preferred a
                                       more informal seating arrangement where he sat among his
                                       guests. Dinner could be a lengthy affair, lasting up to five
                                       hours. If the King had 36 guests for dinner there would be a
                                       minimum of 18 footmen assisting the guests.

                                       Dining à la française, was the norm, but dining à la russe, was
                                       becoming fashionable around this time. A la française meant
                                       all the food for each course was displayed on the table at the
                                       same time. The presentation of the food was very important.
                                       Guests would either serve themselves or be assisted. A la
                                       russe meant that each dish was served to the guest. Each
                                       course was accompanied by either cool white wine or
                                       champagne. Red wine at the time was considered indigestible
                                       at meals. George IV’s favourite drink was cherry brandy.

                                                                    Discover the Royal Pavilion

Dinner was followed by conversation, games or musical
entertainment, which lasted until the early hours of the
morning. Music was George IV’s other great passion and,
appropriately, the Music Room is just as grand as the
Banqueting Room. In this extraordinary interior, the King’s
own band entertained guests with selections from Handel or
Italian opera. The band usually played between 9 o’clock and
midnight, and were kept in Brighton on a retainer salary.
Famously, the Italian composer Rossini visited the Pavilion in
1823 and performed for the King. Rossini later met the King
several times in London, where they sang duets together.
George IV enjoyed singing and would often contribute to an          The Music Room from Nash’s
evening’s entertainment with popular airs, accompanying             Views, with a concert in
himself on the pianoforte.                                          progress

The Prince Regent’s interest in the arts extended to the
theatre, and in 1806, he gave his royal assent to the building of
the Theatre Royal on New Road, to the west of the Pavilion
grounds. The Theatre Royal in its original form was built in an
unprecedented ten months and first opened its doors to the
public on Saturday, 27 June 1807 with a performance of
Hamlet. The first 50 years of the Theatre Royal were uncertain
due to the part-time patronage of fashionable society who
only visited Brighton during the winter season. As a result,
no manager lasted longer than 18 months. The glory days of
the Theatre Royal would arrive with the railways in the
Victorian era.

                                                                    Exterior of The Theatre Royal

Activities and Ideas
    How does Regency dining and entertainment differ from
    the way we live today? Are there any similarities?

    Design a dish fit for a King. Think about presentation
    and the kinds of food that were available in Regency

    Why was French cuisine considered fashionable in
    Regency times?

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

     The Impact of the
     Royal Pavilion on
     Brighton during
     George IV’s lifetime
                                      The people of Brighton eagerly waited for George IV’s visits,
                                      which raised the profile of the town. Newspapers such as the
                                      Sussex Weekly Advertiser and the Brighton Gazette would
                                      report on the activities of the Prince, his state of health and
                                      who visited the Pavilion. By 1800 it had become, according to
                                      the Brighton Directory, ‘the most frequented [and] without
                                      exception one of the most fashionable towns in the Kingdom’.
                                      The Prince’s presence in Brighton, and the fashionable society
                                      that followed him, brought considerable prosperity for those
                                      with direct contact with the monarch and those on the
                                      outskirts, although it should also be remembered that the
                                      Prince was notoriously bad at paying his bills promptly.
     A Voluptuary under the Horrors
     of Digestion, by J Gillray       George IV paid his staff quite well by the standards of the day.
     caricaturing George’s love of    On retirement, the pension given to staff was generous and
     food and drink                   sometimes equivalent to the salary for the post. A list of
                                      proposed pensions submitted to the Treasury in 1837
                                      suggested an annual pension of £50 to a housemaid who,
                                      after 25 years’ service, could no longer undertake her duties
                                      owing to ill-health and infirmity. Similarly, other service
                                      industries benefited from the King’s residency in Brighton. An
                                      account from the Public Record Office shows that in the first
                                      three months of 1821, Mary Rowles, the local laundress,
                                      washed over 2,500 dusters for the Pavilion.

                                      At the beginning of the 18th century the town’s shops had
                                      mainly catered for the fishing professions, but, from the late
                                      18th century onwards, London based retailers started to
                                      arrive. Shops such as silver and goldsmiths, linen drapers and
                                      tailors emerged and, by 1800, 50–60 shops could be found on
                                      North Street. Some of the shops had royal patronage. Thomas
                                      Nightingale was a glover and breeches maker and would even
                                      clean the Prince’s hunting breeches. The sign outside his
                                      shop consisted of a huge stuffed leather glove. The presence
                                      of royalty and aristocracy also brought new services to the
                                      town: coffee houses, banks, circulating libraries and theatres
                                      emerged around the Steine.

                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

Holland and Nash’s rebuilding of the Prince’s home and those
of his wealthy friends provided work for local tradesmen,
labourers and craftsmen. Over the next decades elegant town
houses, squares and crescents were constructed reflecting
the affluence and popularity of the town. Some buildings
attempted to imitate the style of the Royal Pavilion, like the
Western Pavilion constructed at the end of the 1820s for
Amon Wilds. Wilds was a local architect responsible for many
of the buildings in Brighton.

The explosion of new building dramatically altered the             Brighton in the Regency by
landscape of Brighton, including the area around the Royal         Anna Katrina Zinkeisen, 1939
Pavilion itself. When the Prince of Wales first rented Thomas
Kemp’s farmhouse it had little land attached to it. Over time,
more land was acquired, buildings demolished and East
Street closed, to provide the Pavilion with a private eight acre
park. As a concession to the disruption caused by closing
East Street, the Prince Regent built New Road along the
western edge of the grounds. The Steine also experienced a
change in character, owing to its proximity to the Pavilion.
Initially used by local fishermen to dry their nets, it now
became a fashionable place to be seen and to promenade

                                                                   In this image, fashionable
                                                                   society can be seen
                                                                   promenading on the Steine,
                                                                   (Pavilion at Brighton, 1829)

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                   One of the reasons that people kept coming to Brighton was
                                   its continuing reputation as a health resort. It was the main
                                   reason the Prince had first visited Brighton in 1783. A notable
                                   figure in the development of Brighton’s bathing industry was
                                   Sake Deen Mahomed, who moved from India to Britain in
                                   1810 and opened the first Indian restaurant in London, the
                                   Hindustanee Coffee House. Unfortunately it was not a
                                   success and, bankrupt, Sake Deen Mahomed moved to
                                   Brighton in 1814, where he established a vapour bathhouse
                                   on the site that is now the Queen’s Hotel. Sake Deen
                                   Mahomed called himself a ‘shampooing surgeon’ and offered
                                   his clients a massage with Indian oils (similar to an
     Sake Deen Mahomed
                                   aromatherapy massage). He received a royal warrant for his
                                   baths from George IV and supplied the Pavilion with towels
                                   and brushes. He also installed a vapour bath for the King in
                                   the Royal Pavilion. Having patronage from the King assisted
                                   Sake Deen Mahomed in gaining a reputation in Brighton and
                                   attracting an important clientele that ensured prosperity not
                                   only for himself, but for others involved in the bathing industry.

     Mahomed’s Baths

                                   Activities and Ideas
                                       ‘The King is to this town what the sun is to our
                                       hemisphere – universal cheerfulness is presented when
                                       the rays of Royalty sparkle upon the picture of our local
                                       sociabilities and interest.’ Sussex Weekly Advertiser,
                                       April 1820. Why does this quotation make such a strong
                                       link between George IV and Brighton?

                                       What evidence of Regency Brighton can you see in
                                       Brighton & Hove today?

                                       Why do you think Brighton was often referred to as
                                       ‘Piccadilly by the Seaside’?

                                       In what ways did George IV introduce different cultural
                                       influences to Brighton?

                                                                     Discover the Royal Pavilion

The Royal Pavilion in
Victorian Times
Queen Victoria first visited the Royal Pavilion in 1837. Her
initial reaction was cool: ‘The Pavilion is a strange, odd,
Chinese looking place, both outside and inside. Most of the
rooms are low, and I can see a morsel of the sea, from one of
my sitting room windows’. She visited the Pavilion again in
1838 and 1842 before finally resolving to sell the Pavilion in the
late 1840s. Her decision to sell was based on various factors.
The Pavilion was never designed to be a family home and
Victoria recognised that she would struggle to accommodate
her growing family in the limited private apartments. The
proximity of the Pavilion and its grounds to the centre of town
and its increasing population also meant that it lacked the
privacy and isolation the Queen desired (and found at
Osborne House, her preferred holiday retreat). Finally, the
extravagance embodied in the Royal Pavilion was at odds with         Queen Victoria
the more reserved character of Victoria’s reign and it may
have been a politically astute move for Victoria to distance
herself from her self-indulgent uncle’s taste and lifestyle.

When the possibility of buying the Royal Pavilion from Queen
Victoria was raised, leading figures in the town recognised the
importance of the building not only to the town’s history but
also to its economy. The building was purchased by the town
of Brighton in 1850 for £53,000 and remains to this day the
only royal palace not owned by the state or the Crown.
However, any celebrations at securing the Pavilion were
somewhat dampened by the fact that the building was                  In this image, the Long Gallery
virtually empty. Prior to purchase, the interior was stripped of     is stripped of many of its
virtually all furniture and fixtures, including wallpapers,          original features, including
decorative features and chimneypieces, though many original          ornaments and furniture
items were subsequently returned by Queen Victoria and
successive monarchs.

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

     The Royal Stables were
     transformed into a concert hall
     in 1867

                                       The new ownership of the Pavilion and its grounds marked a
                                       change in status, from a place of decadent exclusivity to a
                                       popular centre for wider society to enjoy. During this period
                                       the Pavilion was frequently used for social or civic events such
                                       as fetes, bazaars, baby shows, exhibitions, charity balls and
                                       conferences. Other buildings within the Pavilion grounds were
                                       also developed for wider usage. The Riding House was
                                       transformed in 1868 into a venue for the weekly corn market.
                                       The Royal Stables (now the Dome) were reconstructed as a
                                       concert hall in 1867, and although originally housed in the
                                       Pavilion, a museum, art gallery and library were built next to
                                       the Dome in 1873, on a site originally intended to be used as a
                                       tennis court.

                                       Activities and Ideas
                                           Why did Victoria remove so many fittings and furniture
                                           from the Royal Pavilion? Why did she return them?

                                           How do you think Victoria’s withdrawal from Brighton
                                           was viewed by local businesses?

                                           Why did leading figures in Brighton think the Pavilion
                                           was important to the town’s economy?

                                           What would have happened to Brighton’s image if the
                                           Royal Pavilion had been demolished?

                                                                  Discover the Royal Pavilion

The Development of
Victorian Brighton
The Victorian period saw the expansion of Brighton from a
fashionable town providing amusements to the elite few to a
busy popular seaside resort that accommodated both very
rich and very poor people. In this period, the population grew
from 7,000 in 1801 to 46,661 in 1841, and was an incredible
120,000 by 1901. The development of the railways played a
major part in this transformation.

The arrival of the railway in 1841 brought Brighton within easy
reach of day-trippers from London. Before the opening of the
railway, any Londoner wanting to travel to Brighton would
have had to pay over £1 for an uncomfortable six hour
stagecoach journey. The new railway offered London-to-            Crowds of passengers arriving
Brighton return trips, taking two hours each way, for             from London by train for a day
approximately 15 pence. By 1860, Brighton was receiving           trip to Brighton
250,000 visitors a year by train (little wonder that Queen
Victoria felt Brighton could not provide the isolation she

The growth in population brought about by the railways had
an impact on the geography of Brighton. Rows of terraced
houses appeared to accommodate the town’s growing
population. A wide-reaching programme of public works was
undertaken to sustain the new population. Civic works
included the construction of a vast sewer system to improve
sanitation and a public transport system of trains and trams.
The railway network itself dramatically changed the landscape
of the town. Giant viaducts stretched over the town’s streets
and the locomotive works, now the New England quarter,
brought heavy industry into the centre of the town.               Brighton railway yard and
                                                                  locomotive shed
Bathing and seaside holidays continued to attract holiday-
makers, and amenities were developed to meet the increasing
demand for tourist attractions. These included pleasure
grounds and parks, music halls, an aquarium, two piers and,
by 1850, over 500 places where you could drink alcohol. The
tourist boom also resulted in the development of new hotels
and lodging houses for upper and middle class holiday-
makers who came for week-long holidays, unlike the day-
trippers from London. Hotels such as the Grand and the
Metropole became symbols of opulent grandeur and set a
model for hotels elsewhere.
                                                                  Crowds on the beach, 1890

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                        Cast iron became a fashionable building material in Victorian
                                        times, and structures such as the West Pier and Palace Pier
                                        gave Brighton’s seafront its distinct Victorian character. For a
                                        long time, the seafront had benefited from three piers. The
                                        Chain Pier had been built in 1823 as a landing stage to help
                                        passengers disembark from larger ships with ease. The
                                        Chain Pier, was different from typical piers because, rather
                                        than being built on stilts, the deck of the pier was suspended
                                        from chains attached to pillars. The pier was destroyed in a
                                        storm in 1896 but, prior to this, had become a popular
     Chain Pier
                                        promenade for Victorians who enjoyed the sensation of
                                        walking out over water.

                                        Brighton seafront and its holiday-makers also benefited from
                                        the unusual invention created by inventor and engineer
                                        Magnus Volk. The electric railway that Volk invented in 1883
                                        still runs along the seafront today. It was the world's first
                                        publicly operated electic railway when it opened, and was
                                        quite a revolutionary idea. At that time, parts of the track
                                        actually ran on stilts on the beach, ten to 20 feet up. In 1896,
                                        Volk proposed extending his Volks Electric Railway to
                                        Rottingdean. The railway took passengers further out to sea,
     Volk’s Sea Going Car at Low Tide
                                        some 50 metres offshore, operating on stilts. It was
                                        nicknamed the Daddy Longlegs at a fairly early stage, because
                                        of its strange appearance.

                                        Activities and Ideas
                                            What impact did the railways have on the development
                                            of Brighton?

                                            How did Brighton’s reputation as a seaside town
                                            change in the Victorian era?

                                            What evidence of Victorian Brighton can you find in
                                            Brighton & Hove today?

                                            To what extent could Victorian Brighton be described as
                                            a place of invention?

                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

The Impact of the
Royal Pavilion on the
development of modern
 During the First World War, the Royal Pavilion complex was
used as a military hospital for wounded soldiers. Between
1914 and 1916 over 4,000 Indian patients passed through the
hospital. Substantial alterations were required for this
purpose. In addition to the operating theatres, nine kitchens of
three different types were established: one for meat-eating
Hindus; one for Muslims and one for vegetarians. Although it
may be viewed as a naïve or simplistic choice today, at the
time the decision to care for wounded Indian soldiers in the
oriental splendour of the Royal Pavilion would have seemed         The Banqueting Room of the
appropriate and fitting.                                           Royal Pavilion as a hospital
                                                                   ward for Indian soldiers in 1915
The contribution made by Indian soldiers and their link with
Brighton is commemorated by two memorials. The first is the
Indian Gate on the southern side of the Pavilion’s entrance.
The gateway was the gift of the people of India and was
unveiled by His Highness the Maharaja of Patiala in 1921. The
second monument, know as the Chattri, was erected on the
Downs outside Brighton. It was unveiled by the Prince of
Wales in 1921. The memorial was built on the exact spot
where the bodies of Indian soldiers had been cremated.

                                                                   Unveiling the Chattri, 1921

Activities and Ideas
    What would an Indian soldier have thought of the Royal
    Pavilion? Would it have reminded him of India?

    Why is it important to remember those who lost their
    lives fighting in the First World War?

    What can we learn about international relations and
    empire through the Indian soldiers at the Royal
     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                        The painstaking task of restoring the interior of the Royal
                                        Pavilion to its former decorative splendour was begun in
                                        earnest in the late 1940s. The aim has always been to restore
                                        the Royal Pavilion to how it looked in the 1820s during George
                                        IV’s reign. The programme of restoration has revived many of
                                        the skills and crafts which were employed in the original
                                        building of the Royal Pavilion.

                                        The problems encountered by the restoration teams have
                                        been numerous. They include:
                                        • water penetration; the Royal Pavilion began to leak soon
                                           after it was completed
                                        • wet and dry rot. At one period, the roofs of both the Music
     The Pavilion shrouded in
                                           and Banqueting Rooms were in danger of collapsing owing
     scaffolding                           to the rotting laminated beam ends which supported the
                                           characteristic tented roofs.
                                         • cracked stonework caused by dampness, the salty
                                           atmosphere and traffic pollution.

                                        Restoration suffered further setbacks in the form of an arson
                                        attack in 1975. The attack severely damaged the Music Room
                                        and it took 11 years to repair the damage. The same room
                                        suffered further damage in the great storm of October1987,
                                        when a stone ball crashed through the roof, undoing much of
                                        the recently completed restoration work from the earlier arson

                                        The restoration of the Pavilion has relied upon gifted
     A conservator restoring the cove
                                        visionaries and generous individuals, who, by their
     in the Music Room following the    enthusiasm, have been able to keep the Pavilion in the public
     fire in 1975                       eye, saving it from demolition on more than one occasion.
                                        These individuals have included curators, conservators and
                                        members of the council. Equally important has been the
                                        support of the various monarchs since George IV, who have
                                        returned many of the Pavilion’s original fittings and

                                        Activities and Ideas
                                            What is the value of restoring a building such as the
                                            Royal Pavilion?

                                            How can buildings such as the Royal Pavilion generate
                                            their own income? Plan a one-off special event to raise
                                            money for the Pavilion.

                                            How important are historic buildings to the tourist
30                                          industry?
                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

The Royal Pavilion is the only royal palace to be owned by a
city. As Brighton & Hove City Council’s financial commitments
to the community encompass a wide range of services, the
Royal Pavilion has to supplement the budget allocated for it by
the council. Apart from charging admission, the Pavilion is
able to secure funds through grant-awarding bodies and
sometimes through sponsorship from local business for one-
off events. Approximately 100 people work in the Royal
Pavilion today, a figure that corresponds to the number of
servants that George IV used to employ in the Pavilion. The
Royal Pavilion is an important tourist attraction enjoyed by
around 300,000 visitors per year. 41–45 per cent of visitors to
the Pavilion say it is their main reason for visiting Brighton &
Hove. Therefore the building is crucial to the tourist industry    George and the Dragon carnival
in the city, and there are many ways in which the influence of     costume. Made by Jane Hawley,
the Royal Pavilion can be felt in the modern day character of      Rose Holt and Sarah Parsons
Brighton & Hove.                                                   for the May Childrens’ Parade,
The city continues to attract thousands of holiday-makers and
day-trippers each year, although the trend for short-break
holidays is stronger than the family holiday market these days.
Part of the city’s seaside appeal for visitors remains its
reputation as a party town. Just as the Prince Regent enjoyed
the freedom and pleasures that Brighton offered him away
from the confines of court, so too do many visitors to Brighton
& Hove. The city’s many nightclubs attract large numbers, all
looking for escapism and fun.

The Royal Pavilion is the centrepiece of the cultural quarter in
Brighton & Hove, which also includes Brighton Museum & Art
                                                                   Mods and Rockers, Brighton
Gallery, the Dome complex and Theatre Royal Brighton. The
                                                                   beach, 1964
Brighton Festival is now the second largest arts festival in
Europe and once again reinforces Brighton’s image as a city
with a vibrant cultural arts scene. During the festival, houses,
pubs, clubs and churches are transformed into galleries,
theatres and concert halls hosting a diverse range of artistic
events. Many parallels can be found between Brighton & Hove
during the festival and the heady atmosphere that surrounded
the Royal Pavilion during the Regency period.

Ever since the Prince Regent patronised Brighton, the city has
become synonymous with rebellion and embracing alternative
lifestyles. Often referred to as "the gay capital of Britain",
Brighton has a substantial gay population and is host to Pride
every August, which attracts thousands of participants and
spectators. The Royal Pavilion represented a rebellion in terms
of courtly style and behaviour, and this spirit has continued
throughout the 20th and 21st century. In keeping with the
trend for a bank holiday day trip to Brighton, begun in
Victorian times, Brighton beach was the location for the
infamous clashes between Mods and Rockers in 1964, which
     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                   led to widespread panic across the country regarding the
                                   increasing wildness of young people.

                                   The originality evident in the design of the Royal Pavilion
                                   continues to influence the character of Brighton. Buildings
                                   such as Jubilee Library, the proposed Brighton i360, and Frank
                                   Gehry’s King Alfred development, sustain Brighton & Hove’s
                                   reputation for innovation and cutting edge design. Equally
                                   forward-thinking is the growth of new industries in Brighton.
                                   With the decrease in heavy industry, with the closure of the
                                   railway works in the 1950s, there has been a growth in
     Jubilee Library, photo by
                                   businesses involved in digital and new media, resulting in the
     Nicholas Sinclair             city often being referred to as “Silicon Beach”.

                                   The Royal Pavilion transformed the fortunes of Brighton by
                                   attracting wealthy visitors and increasing the demand for a
                                   range of services. The tourist industry remains a key part of
                                   the city’s economy, generating £380 million each year.
                                   However, aside from specific tourist attractions, visitors to the
                                   city can also enjoy over 2,000 shops, which are mainly located
                                   in the area between Western Road and the Lanes – areas
                                   made fashionable during the Prince Regent’s time. The city
                                   remains a popular place to live and work attracting a large
     The Royal Pavilion
                                   number of businesses and people. In 2001, the city’s
                                   population was estimated at just under 250,000.

                                   The Royal Pavilion has become an iconic symbol for the city of
                                   Brighton & Hove that is recognised by the city’s inhabitants
                                   and visitors alike. More than any other image, it epitomises
                                   the spirit of Brighton, symbolising fun, originality, innovation
                                   and a healthy disregard for convention. Without the Royal
                                   Pavilion, Brighton would be similar to Worthing or Bognor
                                   Regis, or any other seaside town. It is the continuing influence
                                   of the Royal Pavilion that gives Brighton & Hove its unique and
                                   magical quality.

                                   Activities and Ideas
                                       What is the same and what is different about seaside
                                       holidays in Brighton now and then?

                                       What would George IV think of contemporary Brighton?

                                       What qualities associated with the city were initiated by
                                       George IV?

                                       What changes has Brighton & Hove experienced since
32                                     the building of the Royal Pavilion? How has it stayed the
                                                                   Discover the Royal Pavilion

Suggested Activities
This section of ‘Discover the Royal Pavilion’ provides
suggested activities for students to undertake before, during
and after a visit to the Royal Pavilion. They are designed to
support learning across the curriculum and can be adapted
for all Key Stages. Additional ideas and discussion questions
can be found throughout the resource.

As the Royal Pavilion is a precious and relatively small palace,
the following points should be taken into account when
deciding what activities to carry out during a visit to the
Royal Pavilion:
• school parties must follow the circulation route to avoid
• drawing is only permitted in certain areas with prior
Bearing these points in mind, certain approaches may be            Greater Brighton Celebrations
more suitable than others. Questions which encourage close         Week Programme
observation, and tasks in which children have to make a few
written or mental notes may be most suitable.

Design and Technology
• design an additional decadent room for the Royal Pavilion, which conforms to Regency
  technology and materials and meets the requirements of King George IV’s lifestyle
• design and make a hat inspired by the Pavilion
• investigate equipment used for cooking food and explain how it works
• talk about the advantages and disadvantages of the structure of the building

Creative Writing
• choose a specific theme room in the Royal Pavilion and design a guidebook for it.
  Think about audience, content, layout and images
• devise and perform a scene ‘At the Banquet’ or ‘In Preparation for the Banquet’

• investigate the effects of the weather on the building
• find out how ice was obtained and stored in large houses before the invention of
  electricity, and experiment with preventing ice from melting
• explore how food was preserved and cooked, and compare these methods with those of
• investigate different ways of producing heat and light in the past and present
• record the plants growing in the gardens, and find out about their origin and suitability to
  our soil and climate

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

     Art and Design
     • use a visit to the Royal Pavilion as research to create a souvenir that captures the spirit
       and image of Brighton
     • design a poster to attract people to come to Brighton. Students could focus on the
       Regency or Victorian period, or design a contemporary advertisement
     • make a card print based on detailed drawings of the windows at the Royal Pavilion
     • look at the trompe l’oeil painting and experiment with the technique
     • make a clay relief of part of the Pavilion from observational drawings
     • look at and discuss cartoons by Gillray and Cruikshank on display in the Royal Pavilion
     • design and make a piece of sculpture for the gardens

     • look for evidence of other countries (food, furnishings, fabrics, architecture) and plot
       them on a world map
     • use the Royal Pavilion as a stimulus for finding out about other parts of the world

     • create a piece of music in response to one of the rooms
     • listen to examples of music from the 18th century in contrast to some Chinese music

     • create a piece of dance inspired by the chinoiserie style of the Royal Pavilion
     • investigate dance from different cultures represented in the Royal Pavilion, including
       Chinese, Indian and Regency styles

     • what does the Royal Pavilion tell us about the character of George IV?
     • in each room look for evidence of what the rooms were used for
     • find out about different ways of lighting before the invention of electricity
     • look at the satirical cartoons of George IV on display in the Royal Pavilion and talk about
       their usefulness as evidence
     • find out about Regency pastimes, learn a game/song/dance

     Primary Sources
     This section also includes some primary resources to explore the Royal Pavilion and its
     impact on the development of Brighton and Hove:
     • The ground floor plan, taken from Nash’s Views, can help students understand how the
        Pavilion functioned as a royal palace. Students can use the plan to identify the state
        rooms, the private King’s Apartments and servants’ quarters, and see how these different
        areas were interlinked.
     • The two maps of Brighton, dated 1779 and 1850, can provide students with visual
        evidence of the extent to which Brighton developed as a result of the presence of the
        Royal Pavilion and influence of George IV. The maps can be used individually to provide
        historical context, or together to compare and contrast pre- and post-Pavilion Brighton.

                                                                              Discover the Royal Pavilion

Primary Source:
Ground Floor Plan of
the Royal Pavilion

Ground plan from Nash’s Views showing the layout of the ground floor during the Royal occupancy. Most of
the offices to the south and west of the Great Kitchen were demolished in the second half of the 19th century

State Apartments                       Private Apartments                     Offices
1 Porte Cochère                        a His Majesty’s Bedroom                i Corridor
2 Octagon Hall                         b Ante Room                            k Page’s Room
3 Entrance Hall                        c Dressing Room                        l Great Kitchen
4 Long Gallery                         d Bath                                 m Larders
5 Banqueting Room                      e Libraries                            n Kitchen for the Household
6 Banqueting Room Gallery              f Ante Room                            o Steaming Kitchen
7 Saloon                               g Private Secretary’s                  p Pastry Rooms
8 Music Room Gallery                     Apartments                           q Tower for Water Reservoir
9 Music Room                           h Visitors’ Apartments                 r Pages’ Dining Room
10 Red Drawing Room                                                           s Confectionary
                                                                              t House Keeper
                                                                              u Open Court

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

     Primary Source: Map of
     Brighthelmstone, 1779

                Discover the Royal Pavilion

Primary Source: Map of
Brighton, 1850

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

     Schools at the
     Royal Pavilion
                                   The Learning Service at the Royal Pavilion & Museums can
                                   provide you and your students with a variety of resources and
                                   sessions that will help you make the most of a visit to the
                                   Royal Pavilion. In addition to the guided tours and handling
                                   sessions outlined below, worksheets and guidance notes for
                                   Group Leaders to support an independent visit, can be found
                                   in loose sheet format elsewhere in this pack and on our
                                   website. Also on the website you will also find the Learning
                                   Links Royal Pavilion support pack which was completed as
                                   part of a project with Brighton & Hove LEA and local teachers.
                                   In the pack are further lesson plans, more curriculum ideas,
                                   and supporting material.

                                   Guided tours can be tailored to meet the needs of students’
                                   areas of study. Signed tours for visitors with hearing
                                   impairments and tactile tours for visitors with visual
                                   impairments are also available.

                                                                    Discover the Royal Pavilion

General Tour
Key Stage: All
Duration: The tour lasts for 1 hour

The Impact of the Royal Pavilion on the Town
and its People
Find out more about the impact of the Royal Pavilion on the
town from this slide show and guided tour.

Key Stage: All
Suitable for: National Curriculum History
Duration: The tour lasts for 90 minutes

Leisure and Tourism tour of the Royal Pavilion
This tour focuses on the role of the Royal Pavilion as one of
the country’s major tourist attractions.

Key Stage: All/GNVQ
Suitable for: GNVQ Leisure and Tourism
Duration: The activity lasts for 90 minutes

The Royal Pavilion and India
What is the connection between India and a seaside palace
in Brighton? In a slideshow we look closely at the Royal
Pavilion's exotic architecture, the Indian buildings that
inspired it, and its use as a hospital for Indian soldiers during
the First World War.

Key Stage: All
Suitable for: National Curriculum History, Geography,
Art & Design
Duration: Slideshow and tour lasts approximately 1 hour
This session can be complemented with ‘Indian Artefacts
Handling Session’

Indian Artefacts Handling Session
Use original objects and textiles to explore the richness and
diversity of Indian culture. Have a go at block printing.

Venue: Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
Key Stage: All
Suitable for: National Curriculum Art and Geography
Duration: The workshop lasts for 90 minutes
This session can be complemented with 'The Royal Pavilion
and India Tour'

     Discover the Royal Pavilion

                                   Local History Talk and Walk with Martha Gunn
                                   Learn how Brighton has evolved from Saxon times, to a fishing
                                   town, a seaside resort and a modern day city, with your guide
                                   Martha Gunn.

                                   Venue: Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
                                   Key Stage: All
                                   Suitable for: National Curriculum History
                                   Duration: The activity lasts for 90 minutes

                                   Local History Talk
                                   Learn how Brighton has evolved from Saxon times, to a fishing
                                   town, a seaside resort and a modern day city.

                                   Venue: Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
                                   Key Stage: All
                                   Suitable for: National Curriculum History
                                   Duration: The activity lasts for 1 hour

                                   Independent Visits: admission charges for the
                                   Royal Pavilion may apply

                                   Current information on charges for Learning sessions can be
                                   found on our website.

                                   Contact us
                                   To find out more or to make a booking please contact
                                   Royal Pavilion Visitor Services
                                   Telephone: 01273 292822/0

                                   Museums Learning
                                   Telephone: 01273 292843
                                   Fax: 01273 292841

For information about our Learning Programme visit

            Contact Royal Pavilion Visitor Services 01273 292822

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