The battle to correct the name

Photo:Map showing the original 5 laines of Brighton

Map showing the original 5 laines of Brighton

It should be Bond Street Lane, not Laine

By Jackie Fuller, North Laine resident

Despite explanations that it was incorrect to spell Lane with an ‘i’ in Bond Street Laine, Brighton & Hove Council has finally decided that this little alleyway will have to keep its name despite its historical inaccuracy.

A petition was submitted

A petition had been submitted asking for the spelling to be corrected but one Roy Pennington, who doesn’t even live in North Laine, put in an objection, which would have led to a final decision being made in Brighton Magistrates Court. The Council finally decided not to proceed with the case because if the decision had gone against them they would have been liable for hefty costs, including staff time.

It adds to the confusion

This is a great disappointment as it adds to the confusion about the meaning of Laine, which is not an old fashioned spelling of Lane but an entirely different word dating back to the 18th century and meaning a large tract of land. Brighton was divided into only five ‘laines’ at that time. It is therefore quite wrong to put an ‘s’ on the end of North Laine, as there was only one ‘laine’ to the north of Brighton and even today it is the name of a whole area.

Suggestion to revive the name of West Laine

Recently (2012) Council Leader Jason Kitcat suggested reviving the name of ‘West Laine’ for the Western Road/Churchill Square area.  One could hardly refer to these major thoroughfares as ‘lanes’, so maybe such a move would help to explain to people that ‘laine’ doesn’t mean ‘lane’!

The other three Brighton laines

Apart from North Laine and West Laine the other ‘laines’ in Brighton were East Laine (Kemp Town area), Little Laine (around the St James’s Street area) and Hilly Lane (Carlton Hill area).

[Previously published in the North Laine Runner, No 218, September/October 2012]

This page was added on 19/10/2012.

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