- April 2, 2019
It is with great sadness that we have to report the news that one of the city’s great residents has passed away.
Audrey Simpson was an iconic figure here in Brighton and Hove, the very essence of elegance and style and a force to be reckoned with.
Audrey grew up in Crewe and then moved to London where she studied at The London School of Economics and Political Science. From then on she became a formidable business woman and political player, fearless in every way.
In Brighton she created what was most definitely the city’s, if not the country’s, first boutique hotel, The Granville on Brighton Seafront. After that she became very much the face of the city with her unique sense of classic style, always immaculately turned out and always ready to step in to support those causes that she believed in – and there were many. Audrey was not only on almost every committee she was usually the chair and her work supporting local causes and charities and her role as a Magistrate was tireless.
In addition Audrey was a power house, a woman of strong and unswayable opinions. To have Audrey on your side was more often than not to be on the winning team.
She was passionate about her adopted city, never one to fall in with the crowd if she didn’t agree with that crowd and would often go against her peers for a cause that she truly believed in. Audrey was a fighter.
She was also a passionate foodie, a gourmet for sure and dining with her was always an adventure as she would not only try her own dishes but dip into those of her husband David and everyone else at the table. Gourmet yes but also a gourmand, a lover of life and everything that it threw at her.
In the last few years, despite health issues, she was as busy and vibrant as ever. Enjoying her balance of life here in Brighton and also enjoying her passion for international travel.
The number of organisations and charities that she has been involved with over the years will be now poorer for this loss and so will the city as a whole. No longer will we be privileged to see her elegantly striding along the seafront, her immaculate bob and perfect nails in place, the stylish suits that made her always look like a fine fashion plate by Erté, and that sometimes terrifying voice, northern accent still in place, ringing out to keep us all in order.
She leaves behind her loving husband, children and grandchildren but she also leaves behind her legacy of passion, kindness, power and style and she will be sadly missed by those of us whose lives she touched.