One of Brighton’s oldest pubs ‘forced’ to close its doors after rent is tripled

By Robert Mann contact

- Last updated on GMT

Last orders: Doctor Brighton are closing their doors after seeing their rent tripled
Last orders: Doctor Brighton are closing their doors after seeing their rent tripled
An award-winning Brighton pub, which once entertained the likes of Charlie Chaplin and the Prince of Wales is “forced” to close its doors – after the council tripled its rent.

Historic seafront pub Doctor Brighton, in King’s Road, says it is being forced to call it a day after its rent soared to three times its previous level.

Unique

Landlord Charles Child spoke of his frustration and said the venue was “like no other in the city”.

“I have been the landlord there for the last ten years and it has been amazing,” Child said.

“I’ve loved every minute – all walks of life went in there and I’m sure it will be missed massively.”

The venue sub-leased the property from pub portfolio giants EI Group, which leased it from Brighton & Hove City Council for the last ten years.

Ridiculous rent

Because of the emphatic increase in rent, Child decided not to renew its lease and refused to pay the “ridiculous” rise in rent.

“After a two year battle with EI Group and the council, I was forced to go into a bidding process with no rights to stay and the rent was going to be triple what I was paying,” said Child.

“My ethos for Doctor Brighton’s was that it was always a pub for everybody and not the few.

“It was a truly mixed pub where gender, race, sexuality, age and ability made no difference inside the venue.

“It was a fun, safe pub for everybody to enjoy.”

Council duty

Brighton & Hove City Council said they have a “legal duty” to maximise revenues from their property portfolio to help fund their services.

A council spokesperson said: “We had previously let the property to Enterprise Inns and this lease came to an end in the summer. We, therefore, instructed our agents to seek bids on a new lease.

“This was an open bidding process and the rent was not set by the council, it was determined by the bids that came in.

The venue held a farewell party to say goodbye to loyal customers.

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