He was born on 25 April 1877 at Stopes Hill, Earby, near Colne, into a WM family. He worked as a pupil teacher before training at the Bible Training Institute, Glasgow, 1899-1901 for the China Inland Mission. Prevented by the Boxer Risings from working in China, he was accepted by the WMMS for service inIndia and was stationed in 1904 at Secunderabad as an army chaplain. He then joined A.B. Sackett in Gibraltar, serving there 1907-1912. During World War 1 he was an army chaplain in France. He was the first WM chaplain to be awarded the DSO, for his work in the battle of the Somme. He became a lifelong friend of 'Tubby' Clayton and was assocaited with him in the founding of Toc H.. In 1922 he returned to Gibraltar, where his memorable ministry lasted for 29 years. Many of his furloughs were spent in Spain. He wrote A Page of Methodist History (Gibraltar, 1943). He was never married and at his death on 9 December 1951 was buried in Gibraltar.
'The history of Gibraltar is interwoven with the names of great Methodist chaplains, but no Methodist chaplain in Gibraltar rendered more devoted and consecrated service than Padre Brown.'
Methodist Recorder, 20 December 1951
'He was theologically largely self-taught and he could not easily be assigned to any particular school of thought. He was evangelical, but not fundamentalist, …expository, but always made the Bible relevant to the life of service men on active service from their homes; he was impatient of stunts or pulpit tricks and remarkably free from pulpit mannerisms.'
Ernest R. Taylor, Padre Brown of Gibraltar: a memoir, p.53