“So, where are we going tonight?” Andy Pennick, CEO of Smash Brighton, has a perfect answer to that oh-so-frequent question. Along with colleagues David Attlee and Sam Kirsten (both computer science students at Sussex), Pennick created the information website Smash Brighton, which keeps you up-to-date about the different events going on at night during the week, along with pre-drinking tips (pre-smash) and suggestions about post-night out food hubs (post-smash). The idea came to Pennick when, during his years as a chemistry student at Sussex, he and his friends kept getting stuck at, “so, guys, where are we off to tonight?” He figured that it would be useful to have a website or an app that answers that question.
After Pennick graduated, he started brainstorming his idea for Smash Brighton, until mutual friends put him in contact with Kirsten (3rd year), who singlehandedly ran the Brightonian Nights site, which operated for the same scope. Meanwhile, Atlee (2nd year) hopped on the Smash Brighton bandwagon over Freshers Week, after he also thought of a similar concept — but for the Facebook platform — and named it Sussex Fresher’s Weekly Motive (later renamed Freshers Motive), “Unlike other similar websites, Smash Brighton is tailored to the city, making it far more detailed and more useful”.
Promoting through the streets, on campus or anywhere in Brighton where there’s a big influx of people, the Smash Brighton quad don black t-shirts with their Smash Brighton logo big and bold and, of course, You’re going out. You better Smash it written on the back–– they’re a hard miss. The Smash Brighton team is composed of four core people and an extended family of seven, and they are always looking for more people that want to be involved, whether in IT, design, social media or that just want to be a part of the project. In particular they’d like to include a graduate in business law, as those “types” are always useful. They’re also looking for volunteers who are interested in turning the site into an App, as Andy (a full-time Know How technician) stated “An app is on the way for sure, we’re trying to spread the word about looking for some people who’d be interested in it”. Although their website is very user-friendly, an App would nonetheless make the info even more accessible and it would be an obvious next step.
In addition to the obvious social media platforms e.g. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, Smash Brighton also has a Spotify profile to help you get into the going-out mood. Their service goes far beyond just telling you where to go and for how much money, they tailor your night for you like your own personal night out planners but for free.
The dream is to make Smash Brighton into a franchise, keeping it free of charge for users and expanding it to other cities, “I’d like for it to grow all across the country, Smash Birmingham, Smash Manchester, etc. and revolutionize the way people have a night out!” Andy said. “Particularly starting in Brighton is great, it’s the right size city so not too big but not tiny and there’s loads going on,” David added. At the end of the day — or night — there is no better city than Brighton for an information website about your night out, after all we are notorious for having the most smashing nights.