William Brazenor (1833 – 1916) Obituary

The Ballarat Courier, Friday 22 September 1916

Mr William Brazenor

A very old and prominent resident of Ballarat passed away last night in the person of Mr William Brazenor, a well known architect of Ballarat’s early days. Deceased, was close upon 84 years of age, being born in Shropshire, England, in 1832, took to his bed on Sunday last suffering from an internal trouble, and died last evening.

Mr Brazenor, after receiving a liberal education in his native town was articled to an architect and surveyor in Birmingham. For ten years he followed his profession there and in 1857 came to Australia. Soon after his arrival he received an appointment with the Melbourne City Council and four years later was the successful tenderer for the making of the railway station yards at Ballarat. While this work was in progress Mr Brazenor built for himself an hotel known as the Cattle Yards Inn, and so satisfactory was this venture that he decided to remain in Ballarat, where he has lived ever since.

Some of the principal buildings of this city have been erected by him, notably among them being those offices in Lydiard Street, opposite Craig’s Hotel: the different establishments of Mr Heinz in Sturt and Bridge Streets: and the North Grant Hotel in Bridge Street. Perhaps the largest contract in which he was engaged was the re-erection to his design of the Ballarat cattle and sheep yards. For some time Mr Brazenor was in partnership with Mr Tweedie, but since the death of the latter he carried on alone.

The noble English sport of hunting found in Mr Brazenor an enthusiastic follower. He was one of the founders of the old Ballarat Coursing Club and filled the position of flag steward for many years. Indeed, it is not too much to say that he took the most active part in hunting and coursing of anyone in Ballarat. His jumping horses were famous for their size, and he bred many of the hounds that were run in the Ballarat pack.

One of his pleasantest remembrances has been the times when he associated with the famous poet, Adam Lindsay Gordon with whom he was more intimate than most Australians. Several incidents in the poet’s life were well remembered by Mr Brazenor, and many a sport the two enthusiasts enjoyed together.  In social matters away from his own home Mr Brazenor took very little interest, merely contenting himself with being a member of the Commercial Club.  He was twice married.