In the days when press photography usually means paparazzi it is
refreshing to remember a real gentleman of Fleet Street, Julian Brown,
who has died aged 91.
Julian, a regular Mirror freelance, was in
fact a retired Indian Army major, who commanded a train equipped with a
massive gun and hordes of soldiers, who would trundle around India
putting down any uprisings.
His parents were extremely ‘comfortable’
aged 21, his dad bought him a brand new Bentley, in which he would
cruise the West End. In the thirties he was on the maiden voyage of the
old liner Queen Mary, from whence he set about ‘discovering the joys of
the USA and South America’.
After the army, he took up
photography and became well known to the rat pack of photographers on
doorsteps, showbiz jobs and crime stories.
immaculately and he was charming to a fault but woe betide anyone who
was fooled by the classy accent. Julian was a ferocious operator in the
rough and tumble, push and shove world of the Fleet Steet snapper.
to take pictures of his then boss, Robert Maxwell, he was told by the
‘great man’, “Aren’t you a bit old to be working for me?”
Julian cheekily replied: “Be respectful to a senior officer.” Maxwell was only a captain after all.
Bob loved him and once when Maxwell’s chauffeur had failed to turn up
at a dinner Julian was covering, he commandeered Julian to take him
back to the office in his car…a mini.
Maxwell filled the car
with his presence and proceeded to use Julian’s car phone to call New
York, China, Moscow, without asking of course!
Julian bought his
cameras at Harrods, on the family account, dined at the Savoy and
arrived in his own Rolls Royce to cover showbiz weddings.
loved the job and was an excellent cameraman who will be fondly
remembered not just by photographers but by the many reporters, some
whom are now editors, who had the good fortune to work with him.
Many of us who worked with him will remember the old gent who could charm his way past many a door and beguile many a lady.
Peter Case, Daily Express