Written by James Harrison
Monday, 26 June 2023

Over several articles, the archivist will draw attention to some of the wonderful donations that the College Archive has received in recent years.

When Project 175 opens in 2024, it will usher in a new chapter in the history of performing arts at Brighton College. With the building works now well underway, the archivist, James Harrison, seized the opportunity to expand the performing arts collection, by appealing to the Old Brightonian community to donate any performing arts records they no longer need.

The Archive subsequently received a very kind donation from an Old Brightonian in response to this request. This donation included several amazing photographs from some of the drama performances that took place in the 1950s, including 1954s Hercules Madness, 1955’s Hamlet, and 1956’s The Hypochondriac and Romulus/Regulus.

The most unique item within this donation is a painting the OB created of the set The Hypochondriac, which won a Leonardo Art Prize.

This was shortly followed by another generous donation from an OB - a vast array of records from their time as a pupil here, including magazines and calendars, textbooks and a prayer book, house and sports photographs, personal correspondence, and even some of the exercise books they used at school. These exercise books cover several subjects, including French, English, and Biology, and will now provide future generations with a detailed picture of what Brighton College pupils learnt, and how they learnt it, in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

However, the archivist’s favourite item within the second donation is a book of pressed flowers, compiled by the OB when they were a pupil in the summer of 1960. The book, still in a remarkable condition over 60 years later, includes many flowers gathered from the grounds of Brighton College itself. Nothing like this has ever found its way to the school archive before, making it a remarkably unique part of the archive’s collection.

Both of these fascinating donations are now safely stored in the archive, awaiting cataloguing and placement within the collection.

Perhaps you or someone you know has records from your time at Brighton College that are in need of a new home? The College Archive always appreciates being able to add extra details to our School’s long and colourful story. If you are interested in donating materials to the archive, you can contact our archivist using the email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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