Brighton Fishing Museum (c) N Chadwick
Brighton Fishing Museum

The Brighton Fishing Museum is situated right on the seafront, in the heart of the historic fishing quarter. The museum traces the history of fishing in Brighton from the fashionable heyday of the Regency period to the present day.

Among the displays is a 27-foot clinker-built punt boat - the traditional raft used in this part of Sussex - plus old photographs, oral history exhibits, boating and fishing mementoes, and a computer archive of boating records.

The story starts with Brighthelmstone, as Brighton was known in the 18th century, and the museum tells the tale of how this little fishing town was transformed into a fashionable resort, popularized by the Prince Regent and his court circle.

With the coming of fashionable society, and, later, holidaymakers, fishermen began to turn their hand to pleasure-boating, offering visitors boat hire in addition to their regular fishing activities.

A new exhibition tells the story of Brighton's famous West Pier, from its planning and building to its heyday as a visitor attraction. Pieces of the old pier are on display.