St Michael & All Angels

Known as the 'cathedral of the back streets,' the church is famous for its magnificent stained glass windows; by William Morris, Edward Burne-Jones, Ford Madox-Brown, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Philip Webb, Kempe and Tower.

Brighton, Sussex

Opening times

Open daily.


Victoria Road

Simon Jenkins, ‘England’s Thousand Best Churches’ places it within the foremost one hundred.

Plans for the church were drawn up in 1858, and construction took place between 1860 and 1861 to a design by George Frederick Bodley (whose father had been a doctor in Brighton). The design of the exterior was reminiscent of the Italianate style, in red brick with horizontal bands of white stone and a steeply pitched slate roof. This featured a modest fleche spire containing a bell recovered from Sevastopol during the Crimean War (1854-1856).

This fine building quickly became too small and, in 1865, William Burges designed a parallel church which would incorporate Bodley’s building as its south aisle. Burges was a contemporary of Bodley; both men were born in 1827. It is not known for certain why a different architect was chosen for the redesign, and the changes reportedly caused Bodley some upset. Burges did not live to see his designs realised; he died in 1881.

The exterior decoration of the new building broadly matched that of the original church, consisting of bands of white stone contrasting with dark red brick, but there is a considerable difference in height. The original building’s north aisle was demolished, and its remaining structure became the south aisle of the new church. 

Today, the parish church of Saint Michael’s is recognised as one of the finest Victorian churches in the country, grade 1 listed and internationally famous for its magnificent preRaphaelite stained glass.

  • Spectacular stained glass

  • National heritage here

  • Glorious furnishings

  • Famous connections

  • Enchanting atmosphere

  • Captivating architecture

  • Walkers & cyclists welcome

  • Space to secure your bike

  • Parking within 250m

  • On street parking at church

  • Level access to the main areas

  • Dog friendly

  • Accessible toilets nearby

  • Church of England

Contact information

Other nearby churches

St Paul

Brighton, Sussex

One of the glories of the church is a complete series of stained glass windows designed by AWN Pugin.

Brighton Unitarian Church

Brighton, Sussex

The heritage of Brighton Unitarian Church is intricately interwoven with the story of the Prince Regent (later George IV) from whom the land on which the church was built was purchased.

St Bartholomew

Brighton, Sussex

St Bartholomew's is one of the tallest parish churches in Europe and was completed in 1874.