About us: Brighton and Hove Camera Club

We are a large friendly camera club with a diverse membership.  We currently have over 120 members from in and around Brighton, Hove and Sussex with varying levels of expertise and experience.  We welcome all levels of photography and camera enthusiast, from total beginners to experienced professionals.  

We are a committed club with our main aim to engage, encourage and inspire members. We support our members to develop their photography , as well as providing an opportunity to socialise with like-minded people. 

We hold weekly meetings on a Tuesday, September to May in Hove and we offer members a varied programme. This includes talks and presentations from professionals photographers and members alike and, critique nights where members submit an image for evaluation by an experienced photographer.  We also run technical workshops, but our main aim is to show and discuss a wide range of photography.

As a longstanding and well-respected camera club within the Brighton and Hove Community (see Our History below), we are able to attract high profile, national and international, photographers and other professionals to come along and present to us.  

We also hold a New Members Group once a month, which caters specifically for people who are new to the Club The meetings are workshop-based and are a great way to develop photographic skills. There is an emphasis on developing a photographic eye and thinking about how to communicate visually.

Following the weekly meetings many members head off to the local pub to continue lively discussions about the club and photography. In addition, we have a lively summer programme plus other events throughout year such as Social Gatherings, Day Trips, Photo Walks and more. 

We have held a number of exhibitions over the years and will be continuing these.

There is a club committee, which organises how the club is run, and we’re always on the lookout for volunteers to support and help out with our various activities.

Join us to benefit from all the Brighton and Hove Camera Club has to offer, or contact us to get further details.

Our History

The Club was founded in 1891 as the Hove Camera Club and cost 10 shillings to join. Annual Exhibitions were held in Hove Town Hall in conjunction with the Southsea and Southampton Societies, and known as the ‘Southern Exhibitions’. 

In 1912 the Club moved to Brighton, and altered its name to the Hove and Brighton Camera Club.

In November 1915 an extraordinary meeting was held at which it was decided that, for the duration of the First World War, the clubrooms would be relinquished and the activities of the Club restricted to circulation of its very successful portfolio.

Glory Days

In the mid-1920s the Club moved to new, spacious quarters in East Street, Brighton. These were open almost every evening, and became very much a social centre – members would pop in for a half hour or so to chat about photography, perhaps followed by a game of bridge or table tennis; this settled pattern continued until 1939. 

Throughout the Second World War the Club continued to function actively in spite of the difficulties, with members of the forces stationed locally being welcomed as honorary members. The coming of peace brought with it a large increase in membership, which grew to about 300 in the 1950s. The meeting room became inadequate, but the Club was fortunate in obtaining regular use of the admirable accommodation of the Royal Pavilion for its weekly meetings.

Difficult Times

In 1965 the Club was given notice to quit its East Street premises owing to redevelopment, which, after 30 years of tenure, came as something of a shock. The Club relocated to St Georges Place until 1972. For the next few years, meetings were held at various venues, such as the King and Queen pub, and the Ralli Hall in Hove, followed by rooms at the Sussex County Cricket Ground. 

The Old Market Arts Centre project in Hove came into being in the late 1970s, and meetings started there in 1979, with a darkroom being completed by our members in 1981. Unfortunately, a changing situation at the Arts Centre meant that the Club had to move again and  in 1982 the Club moved to  the English Language Centre in Hove. 

Resurgence

In the late 1990’s a renewed interest in photography, driven by the advent of the digital camera, meant that the Club’s membership started to grow and  the Club outgrew the English Language Centre. So, in 2008, after 26 years there it  moved once more, to its current venue in the Hove Methodist Church Hall.



Encouraged by the Club, many members have developed photographic skills and careers, gaining photographic qualifications with the Royal Photographic Society and exhibiting nationally and internationally.