Brighton is a great place to visit if you wish to experience some counter-culture, proudly catering and celebrating sub and parallel cultural pursuits and activities. To celebrate our city’s vibrancy, we count down the top places to go for pasty, studious experts in a particular field, or ‘nerds’ for short.
Let’s get the most obvious choice out of the way. Providing a broad selection of graphic novels, ranging from mainstream super-hero comics to more obscure offerings, Dave’s comics is a fantastic way of warming up as we embark on this ‘nerdyssey’.
If comics aren’t your thing and you’d much rather collect or play with toys, you can venture next door to Dave’s which sells an eclectic range of figurines and pop-culture memorabilia.
5 Sydney St, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 4EN | 01273 691012
Does exactly what it says on the tin; a board-gaming community that meet up on a weekly basis. Taking place in a variety of pubs around Brighton, playing a veritable smorgasbord of board-games, anything from Pandemic to Carcassone. New faces, places and games are always welcome in this wonderful community.
Sundays – Boardgames at Dice Saloon (1pm)
Mondays – Werewolf at The Tempest Inn (6pm)
Tuesdays – Netrunner at The Northern Lights (6pm)
Wednesdays – Big Boardgames meet at The Craft Beer Co (6pm)
Thursdays – Little Boardgames meet at The Craft Beer Co (6:30pm)
Taking on a few global mega cities, Brighton’s newly-opened comic-con adds another cultural arrow to its diverse quiver. For those who have spent the past few decades with your eyes and ears shut, going “blah-blah-blah”, comic-con is an annual movie, video-game and comic convention.
This year’s Brighton convention took place on June 5th and included meet and greets with celebrities such as Doctor Who and Radagast The Brown actor Sylvester McCoy and Red Dwarf’s Chris Barrie. Book yourself a ticket for next year’s convention and just wallow in the sheer enthusiasm one can experience in these conventions.
Hidden at the bottom of the Churchill Square Shopping Centre, is the bright and colourful Lego shop. This outlet makes for an inspiring experience, exhibiting some extraordinary designs made entirely from Lego. Once you’ve bought as much Lego as humanely possible in the hope of creating your own masterful Lego universe, one often discover’s the designs have resulted in a mass of lego mulch. But it’s still so much fun.
Those looking to crank up the Lego nerdometer would do well to join Brighton Bricks, an adult Lego appreciation society that meets regularly. Share your hobby with a hospitable and friendly gathering of adult Lego fans.
Lego Shop: Churchill Square Shopping Centre, Russell Pl, Brighton BN1 2TF | 01273 772670
If you need some help in bringing your comic-con costume to fruition, then look no further than Revamp, an incandescently pink and endlessly fun fancy dress shop in Sydney Street.
I once needed to dress up as Pete The Droog from Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange. Thinking I could make the costume myself and totally failing, I ended up buying the entire outﬁt from Revamp. This shop sells uncannily accurate and detailed costumes at very affordable prices. An ideal place to go for Fancy Dress parties, Cosplay events or the bedroom…
Brighton’s Games Workshop outlet earns its place on the list for providing some of the latest Warhammer sets, an excellent gaming atmosphere and an opportunity to just play with everything. Make sure the staff don’t see you.
Rally up a posse of your nerdiest friends and take them to Dice Saloon; Brighton’s friendly game store. The Dice Saloon offers a relaxed and social environment where you and a group of friends or strangers can play an assortment of table-top and card games, like Dungeons and Dragons, Magic: The Gathering and far too many Warhammer games to mention in this paragraph!
Great prices for food, drink and game alike.
First Floor, Vantage Point, Brighton, BN1 4GW
facebook.com/Dicesaloon | @DiceSaloon
The siren song of ‘The Nerdyssey’. Charmed by the sweet sounds emanating from the store, you quickly find yourself drowning in a sea of musical recommendations as you enter Resident: an independent record shop at the heart of Brighton’s North Laine.
Helmed by staff members who each harbour an encyclopaedic knowledge of all genres of music, you will undoubtedly find a new album or artist that suits your musical preferences. We really cannot recommend enough that you check out Brighton’s and, possibly, the UK’s best independent record shop.
Zoingimage is a sure-ﬁre hit for nerds of photography and ﬁlm technology, selling film cameras, D.I.Y. camera kits, ﬁlm-stock, and phone accessories. Veterans of old-school technology and newcomers alike will always ﬁnd something to fascinate at Zoing.
A specialist shop for lovers of cult-classic films, and one of the few shops to stock Brighton’s own ‘Brighton Wok: The Legend Of Ganja Boxing’, a stoner martial arts comedy about a gang of ninjas who take over Brighton.
A fantastic little shop if you want to buy some pretty out-there ﬁlms, or even just to talk ﬁlms with the extremely cineliterate owner. They also sell some amazing vintage clothes.
90 Trafalgar St, Brighton BN1 4ER
Having recently been taken over by Picturehouse Cinemas, this previously independent cinema certainly hasn’t lost an inch of its charming atmosphere, or sheer film-loving sensibilities. This art house cinema exhibits a plethora of independent and mainstream films, often putting on cult classics, late night screenings and all sorts of imaginative events.
There is also a cafe and restaurant for visitors to chew over, say, the latest David Lynch offering. If you are a film-loving nerd and need your hunger for films and food satisfied, Duke Of York’s will nourish your appetite and then some.
We recently visited these guys and discovered the secrets of this 106 year old cinema. Check out the article here.
Running around in a neon-lit dark room with plastic guns, firing lasers at your friends. Enough said.
76 Westfield Cres, Brighton BN1 2RA | 01273 227744
What better place for nerds than somewhere to drink and game? With a well balanced atmosphere of colourful neon lights, a pool table, board games and a Nintendo 64, The Islingword is the perfect ecosystem for nerds to thrive and socialise in. A rare gem among a vast mound of “Starbuck’d” pubs.
175 Queen’s Park Rd, Brighton BN2 9ZA | 01273 625429
Here we’ve covered some really rather nerdy places. Go out and explore them or find your own and tell us what we’ve missed! We wish you luck on your quest to find your personal nerd holy grail.
Live long and prosper.