Hove Lawns inspires one of those quite frequent moments where you turn to the nearest listener and proclaim "aren't we lucky?!" and then nod in mutual agreement.
No fancy trimmings here, The Lawns stretch for just under a mile from the border of Brighton into Hove. What would normally be an inconspicuous flash of green in any other location, this great big strip divides the urban cityscape from the seafront, providing a great place to plonk yourself down and admire both.
Anything goes here, so you can eat, sleep, play, run, do the hokey-cokey or impress passersby with an unfathomable yoga position. You're also just a quick jump from a number of seafront cafés and toilets.
It's dog and child friendly, but the only thing separating this space from the main road is the pedestrian path and cycle lane. I recently made the mistake of confidently letting my pooch off his lead only for him to become excited by a chain of passing cyclists. The frantic jumping, screaming and flapping that ensued is not something I want to be remembered for locally.
You can also catch some great events in the summer months, such as the annual Foodies Festival or land based fun to celebrate Paddle Round the Pier.
A good alternative to the knobbly seating the pebble beach has to offer, just be mindful of errant dogs, children or other particularly excitable members of your party.
If you want to avoid the hordes of tourists that descend on Brighton throughout the spring and summer, Hove Lawns is a great place to chill out.
Literally, an incredibly long lawn of grass that stretches from outside the Meeting Place Cafe and the Peace Statue all the way to Maraccco's Ice Cream parlour, it's a haven of peace and quiet compared to the various bars and cafes along the sea-front. In the week there's usually groups of students and friends sunbathing and chatting and at weekends, there's usually couples, families and more friends relaxing and enjoying picnics. There's big signs everywhere declaring the Council's No Barbeques policy but that doesn't deter some from lighting up and cooking their own burgers and sausages behind the beach huts!
Admittedly, I'd always rather sit on the beach than the lawns myself. If you don't like stones however, the most disturbance you'll encounter on Hove Lawns is the odd football or frisby heading in your direction.
This is the ideal place to go and relax and read a book. In the nice weather its absolutely perfect. We've had a fair few picnics here and even at the weekends there's plenty of space for everyone - its huge!
There's a couple of nice little cafes along the way to keep you hydrated but in my opinion, its worth taking a nice couple of bottles of chilled white for your picnic guests.
Make sure you clear up your mess though! Take nothing but photographs....leave nothing but footprints.....ha ha.
Hove lawns are a great place to go in the summer. So much goes on down here and although footy games are not everyones cup of tea it does offer people a chance just to get involved. I have on numerous occasion played with people I have never met and had a great time. I once got offered to play for a football team after just an hour playing with random people so you can meet friends for life.
With shops and cafes nearby take a nice cider or a chilled bottle of wine down and watch the world go by.
Hove Lawns are great.
In the winter they are a great place to run through when you want to have a little bit of spring under your step, during a seafront run. Dogs, dogs and more dog's populate this place, and it seems like a good place to go if you've got a dog, your single and you want to maybe start up something with a little bit of dog related chat.
In the Summer it's the best place to find a game of football with a bunch of people from all over the world who converge on Brighton. It's between the beach, and Brunswick square, so when you've sweated it out here you can then go and chill at one of these.
Unlike some of the other squares and gardens that Brighton is dotted with, the Hove Lawns are a little more pedestrian: a stretch of grass between the main road and the seafront, nothing cleverer than that, leaving the visitor with little to look at, sit in or generally enjoy. It's just a little open and bare compared to the other gardens around town, and it's always covered in kids playing sports games or some sort of parade or carnival: not always the best place to relax.
Without trees or benches to sit under or behind, the only thing the Lawns are really good for, beyond sports and covering with other stuff, is sitting and sunbathing, which the beach, not even a minute away, has been perfect for for years. Also, the road's pretty close, so car noise is high and inescapable: give me the quiet beach anytime! I suppose, if I was more sporty, I might enjoy this area more, or liked popping my nose into all of the carnivally-paradey stuff. Still, any patch of green in a city is much appreciated, I just wish there was more to this particular one.
Situated on the sea front, the Hove Lawns provide a grassy place to sit and have a picnic, play a game of football, or just chill with friends.
Regular events and festivals are held on the Lawns; just a few weeks back we went to the Fiery Foods UK Chilli Festival, and sampled the delights of chilli icecream, chilli cocktails and chilli beer (none of which are for the feint hearted!).
There was a stage with a rockabilly band playing, a bar and various stalls of herbs, chilli plants and seeds, as well as face painting and entertainment for the kids. Perhaps the most interesting part of the festival was watching a line of volunteers chew various chillis until they couldn't take it any more, for the chance to win £50.
When summer comes around Brighton beach is always swarming with people to the point where you start feeling like a sunburnt sardine. For some respite why not head down to Hove Lawns where there's usually a little more space. You can chill out on the grass and, if you're like me, enjoy a bit of people watching. When there aren't too many impromptu footy games going on it's just a nice place to be. Go for a walk, run or a quiet sit down. Just don't barbeque!!! Grrr!!!
She may be green but she's seen a lot unfold beneath her graceful wings from zombie marches, gay pride, drunken revellers and Fatboy Slim concerts. I love the Peace Statue, reminds me of Peace in her Quadriga in London. Age cannot with her her but it's certainly turned her a pretty Veridigris colour. She marks the official line between Hove and Brighton as if to say 'be at peace with one another thou thee might be a bit square on the left and a little loony on the right.'
Nice spot with loads going on. although I have heard some locals grumbling.but that's life. It is a public area and by and large it is respectfully treated. I like it from a photographers point if view. There is always something going on and there is such diversity. Life's interesting!
Hove lawns provides the perfect picnic spot for sea loving folk, and if your not the hamper type there are plenty of sandwich shops nearby. In the Summer Hove lawns is awash with scantily clad Brighton beauties (and their friends) soaking up the rays. In the winter you can watch various exercise groups strutting their stuff and jumping around like over-excited farm animals, which is always funny. The bike route across the front is a brilliant way to get from here to either pier, and although not bike friendly enough in the rest of town, it's a great excuse to get some peddling in. Of course if you don't want to look at the sea, you can glance behind at the beautiful architecture such as the grandiose Brunswick Terrace, you could go the whole hog, wear something fancy and pretend you have just stepped onto your own lawn for tea and scones, but since most of these buildings are flats now you might well of done. Apart from the poisoning from the car exhausts along Kings Road, this is a serene spot to take in Brighton at its best. I will just add though, personally I think the BBQ outlawing is ridiculous and tediously dull.
I live opposite in Brunswick Terrace. I'm not against BBQ's on the lawns and have them their myself with friends on occassions. Hove Lawns is used for many things inc. Champagne Festival, Fiery Food Fetsival, French Market, International Food Market, Naked Bike Ride Stop, Playing Football etc etc. Their is usaully something going on on the Lawns every weekend during the summer and if not ideal for a picnic and outdoor games.The Brighton Marathon passes by both sides and Paddle round the Pier starts on the beach adjacent to the lawns. Brunswick Square opposite is worth a wander around to view the Regency Architecture and chill with the locals in the Brunswick Square Park. I would reccomned the Bucket & Spade Cafe a bit further along toward Brighton next to the playground on the seafront ideal for families. Fresh Food, cold beers and Pimms whilst your kids play in the fenced in playground with paddling pool etc.
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