BRIGHTON PINK PLAQUES
In the UK, a number of buildings are recognised as being of historical significance due to the people that lived there or events that took place there and of these some are commemorated by a Blue Plaque outside the building. We felt that to commemorate the wonderful LGBT history of Brighton it would be good to have a similar kind of recognition, albeit virtual, and out of that desire came Pink Plaques. Maybe one day there will be physical ones too ...
Pink Plaques is your own personal and expert tour guide, letting you peek under the skin of Brighton and Hove to uncover the extraordinary stories of its LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans) past and present.
The app's content was written by Brighton's own Rose Collis (already well-known for The New Encyclopaedia of Brighton and her "Walkie Talkie" personal guided tours on which this app is based) and it allows you to delve into the city's LGBT past, even when Rose can't be there in person to guide you!
Pink Plaques isn't only a fascinating treat for residents of and visitors to Brighton and Hove but for anyone interested in the LGBT history of the UK's queerest city. After downloading Pink Plaques you will know about the hotel where Anne Lister had a dirty weekend, the pub at which a well known pop group's manager, Brian Epstein, quaffed and which gay bookstore owner was prosecuted for stocking 'obscene' material - even if you live far from this exciting city.
Pink Plaques comes with three themed tours: "Hotels", "Cafes and Shops" and "Pubs and Clubs", containing a total of 75 'plaques' (20 of these are an in-app purchase) each containing text by Rose along with an accompanying photograph which can be enlarged for closer inspection. The photographs allow you to identify sites which may now look quite different from their heyday and addresses are provided as well.
Each plaque appears on the built-in map allowing investigation of those nearest you or a planned tour along the city's pavements taking in all its plaques (pausing for refreshment in many of the city's fine drinking establishments of course!). Many plaques have an accompanying website link that allows you to find out what's on offer there now, rather than 60 or more years ago!
In addition, you can also create your own personalised tour from the plaques provided by Rose. You may, for example, wish to create your own "Regency Tour", "Literary Tour" or "Seafront Tour" and add only those plaques that you choose. The map will then shows only the plaques included in your own tour. The app will give its best guesstimate of the time taken for each tour, taking into account your time spent at each plaque and your walking speed (configurable via Preferences) ... but it's not an exact science.
The text accompanying each plaque's entry is written in Rose's own distinctive style with her enthusiasm for her material leading to remarks like these about her work:
"West Sussex Libraries had the great pleasure of working with Rose Collis during LGBT History Month 2012. It was an excellent event, with each section very well chosen for the evening and for the audience in mind."
"If you hear of a workshop near you that is run by Rose, then I recommend that you book early and go, you won't regret it. In the meantime, you can always dip into her books; like Rose herself, they sound absolutely fascinating."
"Talking to her at the close of another long day researching her latest biography, Rose enthuses passionately about her deceased subjects as though they were close friends - lovers almost."
The information for some plaques may simply be factual, but many contain intriguing and often surprising anecdotes about the lives of the city's famous residents and visitors and the places at which they stayed.
You may like to read more about related issues at either the Brighton Ourstory Project (sadly now closed down, but the web site is still there) or UK LGBT History Month.
All text and images contained in Pink Plaques are ©Rose Collis 2015 and reproduction (electronic or otherwise) is expressly forbidden.
So there you have it, your own free fascinating tour of queer historical Brighton and it's still less than the price of a cup of bad coffee when you use in-app purchase to buy the other 20 plaques and remove the advertisements.
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- Information for 55 locations in the City of Brighton & Hove
- Another 20 locations are available via In-App Purchase
- Create your own personalised tours
- No internet required (except for web sites)
- Sort tours by name or estimated duration
- Addresses and photographs for every location
- Works in all orientations
- Configurable tour duration calculations
- All locations shown on the map
- Web links for most locations
- Supports Apple's Dynamic Type
- Much improved VoiceOver integration
- Runs natively in 64-bit on supported devices
- Surprises and fun are sure to be found
- Language: English
- Works with iPhone and iPod touch
- Works with iPad in compatibility mode
- Brighton Pink Plaques requires at least an iPhone 4, iPad 2 or 5th Generation iPod touch