brighton pub exterior preston parkIf you read this post, you’ll know I’ve launched a new Brighton and Hove neighbourhood guide series on the Ellie & Co travel website.

So far, we’ve covered London RoadKemptownSeven Dials, Brunswick Town in Hove and the North Laine. Today, in the sixth instalment, we’re getting to know the little-known residential neighbourhood of Fiveways.

This leafy escape hatch is a brisk 30-minute uphill walk north of Brighton Pier and a 15-minute walk from the edgy neighbourhood of London Road.

It’s characterised by streets lined with historic terraced homes, and is so-called after the five-pronged junction where Preston Drive, Ditchling Road, Hollingbury Road, and Stanford Avenue converge at the top of the hill.

Fiveways, BRIGHTON: A NEIGHBOURHOOD GUIDE

As all essentials are available in the area – from great coffee and fresh bread to vintage clothes and second-hand books – you can avoid going into town if you’re not in the mood.

Here, you’re also on the doorstep of the South Downs National Park, which means you can be hiking around the hills in 10 minutes. Here’s my guide to Fiveways Brighton – the first of its kind on the internet, so far. Let’s explore.

blue car in front of White House

Things to do in Fiveways, Brighton

Follow a hidden Fiveways walk

If I’m walking into Brighton, I tend to follow a route through the leafy backstreets. From Fiveways, head down Preston Drove and turn left, walk through Blaker’s Park to the community garden at the end of Cleveland Road. Turn right onto Clyde Road, and you’ll reach Preston Circus close to London Road, home to the Duke of York’s cinema, the oldest cinema in the country (featured in my guidebook, Secret Brighton). Find more Ellie & Co hidden Brighton walks, here.

Find a secret yoga studio

You rarely get to experience what it’s like to float mid-air inside a church, unless you take a class at SPACE Yoga Studio. It’s unique in that it’s set inside a specially constructed building high up within the nave of St Augustine’s Church near Preston Park. As you stand in tree pose, observing your thoughts, take a moment to focus on your surroundings: vibrant stained-glass windows, pipe organ barrels, and ornate architraves. Find SPACE inside St Augustine’s Centre for the Arts, Spirituality and Wellbeing, Stanford Avenue, Brighton BN1 6EA

wrought iron gate surrounded by trees

Visit my secret Brighton garden (home to a Victorian pet cemetery)

Just down the hill from Fiveways is Preston Manor, an overlooked Edwardian house with a walled kitchen garden, which I call my secret Brighton garden. This was where the manor house owners once grew herbs and vegetables. Today, it’s open for everyone to enjoy. Over in one corner are several mini headstones lining a wall. This is a pet cemetery, home to the graves of 14 dogs and two cats – including George the Pavilion Cat. Read more about where to find my secret Brighton garden and Victorian pet cemetery here.

victorian shopfront with pink stripy canopy

Where to shop in Fiveways, Brighton

Savery Books

This unpretentious family-run bookshop is a city secret, overlooked by visitors in favour of those in the centre of town. Miss it, though, and you miss out! Books arranged on tables outside lure you in to browse the floor-to-ceiling shelves bursting with modern and classic reads, all in great condition. As it’s the only bookshop in the area, it operates a circular economy in that the community donates books for the community to buy and donate back. Find Savery Books at 257 Ditchling Road, Brighton BN1 6JH. Open Monday to Sunday, 10am–2pm

preloved of brighton

Preloved of Brighton

People travel from all over Brighton to visit this second-hand consignment gem. With its ever-changing themed window displays, it’s hard not to stop and be tempted inside to nab a vintage bargain. Find Preloved of Brighton at 267A Preston Drove, Brighton BN1 6FL

coachwerks art space brighton

Hollingdean Wholefoods

This hidden wholefood shop is within an artists’ studio and gallery space. As it’s tucked in a residential street, it’s highly unlikely you’d discover it unless you live in or are visiting the street or someone’s told you about it. The shop is run by volunteers and stocks all kinds of organic fruit and veg and whole food staples like lentils, pasta, rice, and other things. Find Hollingdean Wholefoods hidden at Coachwerks Studio, 19a Hollingdean Terrace, Brighton BN1 7HB

Where to eat in Fiveways, Brighton

 Raven’s Bakery

Everything is baked on-site at this long-standing, down-to-earth, family-run bakery in Fiveways – in a 100-year-old stone oven. Its decor is timeworn, and baked goods are classic and unpretentious. Think: savoury treats like sausage rolls and pasties and sweet treats like Chelsea and iced buns, doughnuts and Bakewell slices. It’s also half the price of others in the community. Seasonal treats fly out the door, like hot cross buns come Easter, and mince pies at Christmas. Find Ravens Bakery at 277 Ditchling Road, Brighton BN1 6JH

Tilt Coffee Shop + Kitchen

This unsung veggie hero serves mouth-watering toasties, heaped salads, fragrant soups, gooey brownies and much more from a postage-stamp-size open kitchen. The coffee is consistently good, too. I dread how many cups I’ve had there while writing my Secret Brighton and Secret Sussex guidebooks. Find Tilt Coffee Shop + Kitchen at 132 – 134 Preston Drove, Brighton BN1 6FJ.

small shopfront facade with a pitched roof and an orange signModel Fish Fryer

I call it the ‘Accidentally Twin Peaks’ fish and chip shop for the throwback interior that reminds me of the 80s TV show for its classic mountain lodge interior of wooden panelling, a co-ordinating checkerboard flooring, orange Formica counter frontage, chintzy china lamp shades, and retro menu board with all the colourful fonts. The chips are pretty good, too, served in retro-style illustrated paper bags. Take a peek inside the Model Fish Fryer and find its location, here.

brighton pub exterior preston park

Where to Drink in Fiveways

Preston Park Tavern

The PPT as locals call it, is a trusty, unpretentious local pub in an elegant Victorian corner building. Peaceful during the week, crowds gather at the weekend, especially on Sunday when incredible roasts (£17) are on offer. It’s a top spot for a family gathering. The food is gastro-level, and the menu changes regularly, but there’s always a fish, meat and veggie option, and the chargrilled beef burger is consistently good. Out front, the terrace is a sun trap come summer. Find The Preston Park Tavern at 88 Havelock Road, Brighton BN1 6GF

Jolly Brewer

A stone’s throw from Fiveways, this small, lively local pub is full of eccentric charm and character. It stands out in the area as a good old traditional drinking pub. Tipples are cheap, and they also do cocktails. It’s the kind of place you go to intending to have just the one, see a familiar face and end up leaving at closing time! Events like quizzes and music nights take place, some more bizarre than others. It’s not unusual for one of the owners, Zac, to play tunes on the saw. Find The Jolly Brewer at 176 Ditchling Road, Brighton BN1 6JA

small living room with colourful furniture and French doors

WHERE TO STAY IN FIVEWAYS, BRIGHTON

Most Brighton hotels I like to recommend are located nearer to the city centre, but there are a few AirBnBs in Brighton nearby, like this stylish contemporary garden flat for two (pictured above). See the full listing here. Or this huge family-sized townhouse with four bedrooms that sleeps eight on a leafy residential street. See the full listing here.

FINAL TIPS

Fiveways in Brighton is a small neighbourhood and easy to walk around. It’s a 10-minute walk to London Road station for trains to Brighton and Lewes, a 20-minute walk to Preston Park station for trips to London and a 30-minute walk to the seafront and central Brighton.

Find a map of Fiveways independent shopping and nearby addresses of note, here. 

If you want more inspiration, my secret guidebooks will take you off the beaten path.

Enjoy reading this post? Fancy buying me a coffee?

New here? Visit check in for a welcome tour, join other curious travellers and subscribe to Ellie & Co • A Far Out Travel Guide by email or follow me on InstagramTwitter or Facebook

Write A Comment

Pin It