The Reverend Bray was a non-conformist chaplain to the Salford Union for 22 years and lived at Holly Bank, Eccles Old Road, Pendleton.
John Dyer Bray was born in Bristol on 2nd December 1867. He was educated at Swansea Grammar School and Rawdon College, Leeds. He first came to the Pastorate of Broughton Baptist Church, Great Clowes St, (later to be called the Salford Union Church) in 1891. At the time of his death he was the longest serving non-conformist minister in Salford.
Reverend Bray took a great interest in the social work of Salford and was an exceptionally good and witty after-dinner speaker. He was a prominent Freemason and held the position of Principal Grand Chaplain of East Lancashire. He was also a Past Master of Royal Salford Lodge. It was reported that when another prominent Freemason, Mr James Higson, JP, was Mayor of Salford in 1917 – 18 one of the "finest Masonic Services ever held in the Borough took place at the Brunswick Wesleyan Church, when Rev Bray preached a sermon that for its eloquence and general treatment made a profound impression".
Just before he died, the Rev Bray suffered from internal pains which he thought were caused by indigestion, but on 20th May he suffered a fatal heart attack at his home on Eccles Old Road, aged 57. The funeral service was held at Pendleton Presbyterian Church and he was interred at Weaste Cemetery.