Oxford History: Mayors & Lord Mayors


Alan Brock Brown (1911–1980)

Mayor of Oxford 1953/4

Alan Brock Brown was born on 30 April 1911 in Australia. He attended Geelong Grammar School, and won a place in New College, Oxford in 1931. He obtained a Second in Law, and went on to gain a top first in the BCL and the Vinerian Law Scholarship.

He was called to the Bar at the Inner Temple, and after practising for a year in New South Wales accepted the Fellowship in Law at Worcester College in 1937.

In 1939 Brown came on to the city council, but soon afterwards was commissioned in the Scots Guards, serving in North Africa and Italy. On 18 August 1940 he was gazetted Second Lieutenant.

In the third quarter of 1940 in Oxford, Alan Brock Brown married Elizabeth M. McCarthy, and they had four sons:

  • Michael B. M. Brown (born in Oxford in 1942)
  • Peter George McCarthy Brown (born in Oxford on 8 May 1945; died 2018)
  • David N. M. Brown (born in Oxford in 1946)
  • Andrew H. Q. M. Brown (born in Oxford in 1952).

In 1953 Alan Brock Brown was elected Mayor of Oxford (for 1953/4), and was thus Mayor at the time of the Coronation of Elizabeth II on 2 June that year. He attended the ceremony in Westminster Abbey with his wife Betty, but there was no banquet so he did not have to undertake the traditional ceremonial role of butler.

Brown fought long and hard against the proposed road through Christ Church Meadow, and was largely responsible for the building of Donnington Bridge.

Brown was a member of Hebdomadal Council from 1951 to 1956, and Senior Proctor in 1950/1. He also served as Vice-Provost of Worcester College.

† Alan Brock Brown had been ill for some time when he died at the age of 69 on Christmas Day 1980 at his home at Mole End, Burcot-on-Thames, near Abingdon. His funeral was held at Worcester College Chapel and was followed by a private cremation.

See also:

  • Oxford Mail, 27 December 1980, p. 3
  • Oxford (the magazine of the Oxford Society), May 1981, 51–2

©Stephanie Jenkins

Last updated: 13 December, 2018

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