Oxley House, after restoration, 1984. View from the east side 
across the site of the cinema.
The house was renovated a few years ago and the drive moved to South Street. Between 1820 and 1825 John Henry Sparrow, of the local iron making family, and his wife Charlotte baptised five children at Bushbury church, all 'of Oxley' so it would appear that theirs was the first family here.

In the 1830s the house was the home of John Shaw and his wife Elisabeth (nee Willkinson).

His business in Church Lane, Wolverhampton, manufactured hardware, pots and pans and coffin plates. In earlier years he had travelled the country on horseback, selling his goods.

On one such trip he met his future wife in Rochdale. (See a collection of her letters 1811-13 in Wolverhampton Local History Library.)

The business expanded rapidly in the first half of the nineteenth century, and their eldest son John was on a business trip to India when he died at Simla on October 26th 1839.

By the middle of the century the company had a turnover of half a million pounds a year. John Shaw's name appears on the petition for the Incorporation of Wolverhampton in 1848.

He was a prominent member of the Congregational Church in Queen Street, a founder of Wolverhampton Library and also of Tettenhall College, where three of his sons were educated.

John Shaw.

He died on August 15th 1858, aged 76 and is buried in the family vault in Wolverhampton Cemetery. His business continued to thrive and eventually became part of the Britool Co. in Fourth Avenue Low Hill.

(I am indebted to Mr G. Hancock of Tettenhall for most of this information.)

Business card of John Shaw and Sons, late 19th century.

As John Shaw was born in 1872 the date of the foundation of the company was probably after 1795.

A drawing of Shaw's works, from a trade catalogue.

The works were originally built for the Clyno Car Co. in the 1920s but they ceased trading in 1928.

The John Shaw/Britool group then took it over to make hand tools.

At the time of the 1861 census Oxley House was occupied by Richard Shelton, timber merchant. He died on April 7th 1870, aged 64, and is buried with his family in a large vault on the south side of Bushbury churchyard.

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