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The Lure of the Beach: A History of Public Sea Bathing in Brighton

Commended in the Victorian Community History Awards, Small Book Publications, 2016

Available at BHS for $20

Brighton’s love affair with the beach began with early European settlement in the 1840s and has continued to the present day. In The Lure of the Beach, Dr Jo Jenkinson relates the story of sea bathing in Brighton from early horse-drawn bathing machines to the smart pop-up tents that dot today’s beaches, from paddling at the shoreline to serious competitive swimming.

Like most love affairs, this story is not without conflict – debates about ‘decency’ on the beach, bathing boxes encroaching on public land, and endless costly repairs to storm-damaged baths surface throughout. But for generations of Brighton families who spent their summers at the beach, sea bathing was, above all, fun.

Published with the aid of a Local History Grant from Public Record Office Victoria.

All proceeds from sales will assist the future research and conservation work of the Brighton Historical Society.

Brighton Historical Society Journal

Published quarterly, the Brighton Historical Society Journal is filled with research and stories about the colourful characters, places and events in Brighton's history, as well as keeping you up to date with the latest BHS news and developments in local heritage activities.

All members receive a subscription to the journal. A small selection of articles can be read for free here.

Remembering Melbourne, 1850-1960

Available at the Royal Historical Society of Victoria for $35

BHS was delighted to contribute to Remembering Melbourne, a beautiful retrospective on the 'lost' elements of our city, produced by the Royal Historical Society of Victoria. Filled with more than 700 black and white photographs of early Melbourne and surrounds, the book sheds a light on buildings and spaces that have been demolished or substantially changed. The second half of the book turns from the CBD to the inner suburbs, and BHS was one of about twenty local historical societies invited to contribute photos and knowledge.

We acknowledge that we meet and work on the traditional land of the Ngaruk Willam of the Boon Wurrung language people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging.

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