The Royal Albion Hotel in Brighton is no stranger to fire.

On the morning of November 24, 1998, a devastating fire broke out in the kitchen of the hotel.

According to reports, a chef had been frying eggs and sausages when hot fat spilled onto the stove, resulting in flames being immediately sucked up a vent to the top floor.

The Argus:

Strong winds contributed to the rapid spread of the fire, which caused significant damage to the hotel’s structure.

All 160 people present at the time of the fire, including guests and staff, were evacuated safely.

However, the disruption was significant enough for the Public and Commercial Services Union to cancel their annual conference, which was due to be held on the same day.

The firefighting operation to tackle the blaze was described as Brighton’s “biggest” in almost three decades.

The Argus:

About 160 firefighters from all parts of East and West Sussex responded to the emergency, but all parts of the hotel suffered varying degrees of smoke, water, and structural damage.

Despite the scale of the disaster at the building, parts of which are English Heritage Grade II* listed, there were no casualties.

The ongoing fire


Brighton's Royal Albion Hotel is still ablaze on the second day of the emergency with nearly a dozen fire engines on the scene at its peak.

The hotel, which has stood for many years, is a much-loved historical landmark in the area but much of the building has now been destroyed by the fire, which began on the fourth floor.

The Argus:

The blaze quickly spread downwards, ravaging the hotel and gutting many of its rooms.

Roads surrounding the hotel remain closed as the emergency services continue to work on the scene.

Shocking videos of the site have emerged, showing the extent of the damage.

Traffic in central Brighton remains affected, with part of King's Road still closed.

Emergency service spokespeople have reported that firefighters are still working at the scene using Arial Ladder Platforms and ground monitors to tackle the fire.

It is currently unclear how long the emergency will last.