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Brighton made a little bit of seaside history when on 1 April 1980 it opened a nudist or naturist beach, the first public naturist beach in the UK. The issue was highly controversial at the time, but since then has faded into memory. The naturist area of the beach is just before Black Rock at Duke's Mound. It is officially known as the Cliff Bathing Beach. At the landward end of the beach the shingle is banked up to form a screen between the beach and the road. 

There is a car park at Black Rock, or during the summer months you can take the Volk's Electric Railway to Black Rock station. Both are a few minutes walk from the naturist beach.

The naturist beach is well used - or at least has its devotees. There is a popular misconception that it is only used by gay men.

Back in 2004 Councillor Paul Elgood, leader of the Liberal Democrats on the city council, was quoted in the local paper, The Argus, saying: "Over the past 25 years it has done a lot for Brighton's image as a forward-looking and liberal place. It has done no end of good in attracting thousands of tourists to the beach and given the city plenty of publicity."

You can read an account of the council controversy that led to the opening of the beach here on the On This Day section of the BBC website

The annual Naked Bike Ride in June ends with a picnic on the Naturist Beach