The area which we now know as Brighton Marina has not always looked quite as it does now. Indeed the Marina has only existed since 1979, just thirty years ago.
The marina itself is fully man-made. The building work began on it in 1971; it was such a huge project that it took eight years before it was finished. When it was eventually ready to begin receiving the yachts for which it was intended, the Queen officially opened the marina, after sailing around the huge site with her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh.
The marina itself was ready at the end of the seventies to receive boats, which of course was its original purpose, but this was by no means the end of construction on the site. Work has been continuing ever since and now the entire area surrounding the marina is a luxurious assortment of deluxe apartments, shops, even casinos and a bowling alley. It is like a mini city on Brighton’s waterfront.
Indeed the newest part of the complex is called The Waterfront, this is an assortment of shops, restaurants, and a hotel, and was completed in 2002.
The idea for the marina was originally laid out over a century before building even began. In 1841, a Mr. Andrew Wigley set out what he called ‘the recoil principle’ for the area.
This included the Chain Pier which was the only pier in Brighton at that time. Mr Wigley had plans to surround the pier with breakwaters, and build Victorian shopping centres and hotels inside this. However this never happened and was forgotten about for over a hundred more years.
The work to date is by no means the end of the building work to be done at the marina, and plans are already in place for the next phase. This includes a forty storey skyscraper and a whole host of other apartment blocks and retail centres.
Brighton Marina is fast becoming, almost like a miniature city in its own right.