THOUSANDS of buildings have been added to Brighton and Hove in the 71 years since the end of the Second World War yet in most cases the architects are not well known.

An exception can be made for Sir Basil Spence who designed the low- rise early buildings for Sussex University at Falmer.

But I fancy few people in the city could name the architect of the Brighton Centre, Bob Carpenter.

Although much derided now as a huge barn with concrete slabs on the front, the centre was Carpenter’s pride and joy. I often saw him pay immense attention to detail and the building has been remarkably successful.

Perhaps the man who had most impact on the city was Brighton borough architect Percy Billington who designed many of the post war schools and council tower blocks.

Few residents care much for his austere design of Brighton Police Station in John Street but it was very much a building of its time.

So were the nearby law courts in Edward Street. Both buildings have been freshened up considerably in recent years.

Some urgent work had to be carried out urgently at Edward Street because the magistrates could not be seen easily in the main court and it was all too easy for prisoners to escape from the dock.

Perhaps Billington’s best building was the College of Art in Grand Parade, now part of Brighton University. This has a gentle curve and is only four to five storey stall.

He was also responsible for much of the technology campus in Lewes Road including the stark Cockcroft building and the education campus opposite Sussex University.

Because the council owned so much land, Billington was in a unique position to influence post-war architecture in the city,especially with major public buildings. The council also invested huge sums in development.

Nicholas Antram in his guide to buildings in the city describes the technology campus as being quite daring in its valley setting.

John Wells-Thorpe,best known for his striking Hove Town Hall in Church Road, now more than 40 years old. It has recently been altered extensively to house more staff but at the same time spoiling the spacious interior.

Antram describes it as an interesting exercise in well-mannered brutalism as one might expect in Hove.

David Robson, who has compiled a list of Wells-Thorpe’s buildings, calls him a moderate modernist.

“He admired the achievements of the iconoclast architects but stepped back from their excesses,” Robson adds.

Robson says Wells-Thorpe, now 88, was always a team player who involved colleagues in most of his major projects.

In the immediate postwar years when money was short, he set out to offer efficient buildings offering good value.

Wells-Thorpe was responsible for several churches including one at Westdene and Brighthelm in North Road.

He also proposed improvements which were carried out in the early 1960s to George Street, the main shopping area of Hove.

Unlike Billington, he had to be mindful of the needs of a variety of clients who did not always have deep pockets. As a result, some proposals were never built.