Monday, 24 November 2014

Better Future, Dyke Path and East Beach Cafe

"Better Future" :- Ok, so the title's sarcastic and very tongue-in-cheek. It's another dig at the human race's never ending rampage on the planet. We are hell bent on building down, out and up as far a we can go with scant regard to what it is we destroy, remove, demolish and flatten in the process. The title refers to something in this image that's hardly noticeable at first but once it's seen it stands out like a sore thumb. In the distance to the right there's the Brighton City skyline and just to the left of that you can see the large, grey protective arm / wall of Brighton Marina (built in the 1970's). For a long time the Marina sat below the level of the cliffs, you'd only see it if you were looking for it or knew it was there. That's all about to change big time. In the 80's and 90's other structures started to appear in the marina. An area that used to be berths for boats was filled in and turned into a car park, Superstore and a few shops, restaurants and bars. A cinema appeared along with a gym and a casino (not to mention the obligatory McDonald's). Then all went quiet for several years. Over the last few months several high cranes appeared in the outer harbour ... now I've mentioned them you can clearly see them sticking up from the marna in this shot. Huge metal walls were dropped into the water and the sea was drained out as the concrete was poured in. This is the going to be the site of the Brighton Marina Tower. When it is completed there will be 853 new homes, 2,000 square metres of retail and leisure space and what they are referring to as a "landmark tower" that will be Brighton's tallest building standing at 128 metres tall. It will stand out for miles, it will be a blot on the landscape and it will ruin shots and mages like these. You can read more about it here :-

"Dyke Path" :- A worn chalk path winds and undulates over the land as the rest of Sussex spills out down below towards the horizon. This is the incredible beauty spot known as Devil's Dyke on the edge of Brighton. It's actually situated in West Sussex (Brighton is n East Sussex) but it borders the outskirts of Brighton so many regard it as being part of the city even though technically it's not. The Dyke itself is on the other sde and is a 100m deep V-shaped valley formed by "tremendous amounts of water running off the Downs during the last Ice Age when large amounts of snow thawed and the frozen chalk prevented any further absorption" on the South Downs Way. This vew is looking North from the top of the Dyke.

"East Beach Cafe" :- No, you're quite right. It doesn't lok like a cafe at all does it! To be fair this is the back of the cafe, the front looks much the same but has large glass panels that allow the customers to sit and drink their coffee on the seafront at Littlehampton whilst gazing out to sea. It's an incredble bit of modern architecture designed by Thomas Heatherwick. His design team was headed by architect Peter Ayres and the resulting building offers wonderful sea views as well as protection from the elements. The cafe's structure won a national architecture prize awarded by RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects). The East Beach Cafe was awarded "Coastal Cafe of the Year" by National Magazine Company's Coast Awards 2011. Littlehampton is a harbour town and seaside resort in West Sussex.

All Photography Copyright © Justin Hill