S.A. BRAIN (Samuel Arthur) 1850-1903

"MR. COUNCILLOR S.A. BRAIN" (From "Men of the Period" c. 1896)

"To everybody in Cardiff the "Old Brewery" is a famous and familiar institution, and enjoys a popularity which is shared in the most liberal degree by its genial and universally-esteemed principal, Mr. S.A. Brain. There is no more notable brewery in all the Principality than this, and in speaking of the career of Mr. Brain, it will hardly be amiss to set down some few details concerning the history and characteristics of this celebrated establishment over which he presides.....

"..... it would be impossible to write even the briefest biography of one of Cardiff's most popular citizens, Councillor Brain, as he is best known, to wit, and say nothing therein with reference to a business enterprise that has afforded him such scope for the exercise of his well-known energies.....

"..... Mr. S.A. Brain brought all his energies and all his practical and commercial knowledge to bear upon the enterprise with such effect that it very soon became necessary to enlarge the brewery premises, so great did the demand for the "Old Brewery" ales become. Still the business grew, but in 1887 the only solution to the problem presented by its increase was found in the idea of building another brewery. This idea was carried out on a property adjoining the old brewery........

"...... Busy as he has been in the affairs of the "Old Brewery", Mr. S.A. Brain has found time to take an active part in the public life of Cardiff, and to beneficially interest himself in local matters generally.....

"..... He was born at Bristol, but has long been identified with Cardiff, both as a public-spirited citizen and a business man. Mr. Brain has been a member of the Cardiff Council since 1885, and is one of the most valued workers in that body, being Chairman of the finance Committee, and a member of most of the other important Committees of the Corporation.

He is Colonel of the Church Lads' Brigade, and takes a keen interest in education, having been a member of the School Board for 3 years, to which he was elected in 1893, being returned head of the poll, and polling more votes than had ever been returned before.

Councillor Brain has been an active member of the Foresters' and Oddfellows' Societies, in which he has passed all the chairs, and he is Freemason of Windsor Lodge, no. 1754. He was Vice-Chairman of the first Cardiff Exhibition in 1896, and has been associated with any movements tending to the benefit of the town.

He is now engaged upon a scheme for the extension of the Borough Boundaries, which will put the town in a position to claim three Members of Parliament, Cardiff having suffered to a considerable extent in its representation in the past.

Councillor Brain is a Governor and member of the Council of the Cardiff and Glamorgan Infirmary; a member of the Council of the University College, Cardiff; a member of the Chamber of Commerce, and of the Naturalists' Society, and Chairman of the No. 7 District County Brewers' Association. The Volunteer Movement is one of Councillor Brain's enthusiasms, and he is Captain of the Glamorgan Artillery.

Among his favourite recreations cycling perhaps comes first, and he is a member of the famous Catford Cycling Club, London. He is also fond of field sports; the gun claims a share of his interest, and his shooting is some of the best in South Wales. Mr. Brain frequently exhibits the superb horses of his brewery at the Cardiff and Glamorgan Horse Show, and has taken First prizes with them.

Councillor Brain is a Churchman, and now fills the office of Churchwarden at All Saints' Church, Penarth. His London Clubs, we may add, are the Constitutional, of which he is a life member, and the Sports."

[S.A. Brain was Mayor of Cardiff 1899-1900]

Family History