THE WARNER FAMILY OF NEW OXLEY HOUSE. (Now No. 437 Stafford Road)
This family, who came into the parish about 1820 to live at New Oxley House, which still stands on the east side of Stafford Road near the junction with Church Road, had strong links with Wolverhampton Grammar School over three generations. Members included several clergy of the Church of England, barristers, a solicitor and a Lieutenant Colonel of the Staffordshire Volunteers. It is to be regretted that two, usually reliable, printed sources of information contain serious errors. I intend therefore to record in detail all the information I have been able to gather.
The story begins with a memorial in the chancel of Bushbury Church "In affectionate remembrance of William Warner Esq. whose constant aim it was during a long and useful life of 88 years, for the last 37 of which he was resident in this parish to do his duty to God and man. Born 5th January 1769 Died 16th July 1857. Also of Sophia his dear and devoted wife Born 25th Feb. 1776 Died 31st March 1829."
Towards the northeast corner of the churchyard the family's large tomb stands on a plinth. I have marked the names of those commemorated here with an asterisk.
The marriage of William* and Sophia* took place at St.Peter's, Wolverhampton on October 23rd 1800 and was announced in the "Staffordshire Advertiser." He was a mercer of High Green and she was a daughter of James Barney of the "Castle Inn". Witnesses were Elizabeth Barney and William and Ann Mitton. William continued in business in High Green and was a trustee of the Grammar School. The move to New Oxley seems to have been more than just a change of residence as in the 1841 Census he is recorded as a farmer. I have traced fourteen children of the marriage (there may be more). I list them below with the conflicting evidence concerning the births of two of the sons.
According to H.R.Thomas and J.Ryan's "Register of Wolverhampton Grammar School 1515-1920" published 1926, he was the eldest son of William Warner and Elizabeth, daughter of James and niece of Joseph Barney, artist, (see D.N.B.), although St. Peter's Baptism Register for 29.9.1801 clearly gives his parents as William and Sophia. Educated at Wolverhampton Grammar School, he was a trustee from 1836 until 1873. With his brother Richard he continued the family business at No.20 Queen Square as mercers, drapers etc. He married on 20.8.1834 at Prestwich, Martha Anderton. They lived for a time at the "Lowlands", Tettenhall and later at Poplar Terrace, Tettenhall Road. He was one of the first elected members of Wolverhampton Borough Council after 1848, a magistrate, and a director of the Wolverhampton and Staffordshire Banking Co. He is buried at Penn with his wife who died 14 November 1898 aged 87. The grave also commemorates their first son William who died on 3 November 1844 aged 9, (he was buried at Bushbury and reinterred with his father in 1873). Also commemorated is the third son John (9.3.1841-11.9.1863) who was drowned at Coris Bay, Geelong, Australia. The second son Charles (2.4.1843 18.9.1888) became Lt. Colonel of the South Staffordshire Volunteer Regiment. The fourth son, William Henry was a solicitor in Worthing, where he died in 1906. The fifth son, William, (3 August 1851-13 October 1921) was educated like his brothers at W.G.S. and later at Rugby. A student at Christ Church, Oxford, and Tutor 1873 -87. Took Holy Orders, Canon 1887. (See Obituary by G.P.Mander in "The Wulfrunian" December 1921.)
G.P.Mander's "History of Wolverhampton Grammar School" lists Thomas as the third son of William and Sophia. He was the only son of his generation not to be educated at W.G.S. but at Brewood. He became a broker of stocks and shares at Stamp Office Buildings, 9 Cross Street, Manchester, with houses at Crumpsall Green and Bryn-y-Menai, Anglesey. He left £1200 in trust for the Warner Scholarship at W.G.S. in memory of his eldest brother.
JOHN (June 1805-1877)
In J.A.Venn's "Alumni Cantabrigenses" published 1940, John is recorded as the son of William Warner and Elizabeth daughter of James Barney. Again St. Peter's Baptism register for 3.3.1807 shows his mother to be Sophia. From W.G.S. he went to Trinity Hall, Cambridge. Admitted to the Inner Temple 8.6.1825. Called to the Bar 26.11.1830. Lived at 11 Montague Street Russell Square then Leinster Gardens, Hyde Park. Eldest son John Gray Warner (3.1.18414.5.1922) at school Repton, Durham and Harrow. To Trinity Hall 1859; admitted to Lincoln's Inn 15.10.1861; called to the Bar 7.11.1864.
SOPHIA. (Born 12.10.1806)
With eldest brother William, continued father's business at 20 Queen Square. Lived at Muchall Hall Penn. Buried at Penn with wife Sarah (Died 18.4.1890 aged 69.) Son, Richard Weston Warner (20.3,1847-15.7.1887), Solicitor in Manchester, died at Whiston Priory Shrewsbury.
First member of family to be buried at Bushbury, although Burial Register gives June 11, probably in error for July.
GEORGE. (25.5. 1811-1872)
In business in Australia and New Zealand.
Married Edward Rogers of Goldthorne 2.11.1843 at Bushbury. Lived at Westbourne Square, London. At 1871 Census she was a widow living at New Oxley with daughter Anne. Died at home of brother, the Reverend Charles Warner, Clun Vicarage.
ELIZABETH* (25.3.1814-11.4 .1862)
FRANCES* (24.5.1815-1.1 1.1830)
HARRIET* (11.9. 1816-7.6.1836)
At W.G.S. then Worcester College, Oxford, B.A.1846, M.A.1849. Curate of Kidderminster and P.C.Wribbenhall 1849-1863. Rector of Henley-on-Thames, 1863 -1868. Vicar of Clun 1868-1897. Fellow of Worcester Coll. 1865, Prebend of Moreton Magna in Hereford Cathedral 1881. Died at West View Bodenham, Hereford. Personal estate worth £17,525. He bequeathed his L.N.W.Railway stock to Worcester College to found an 'Elizabeth Warner Exhibition' in memory of his sister Elizabeth, and his G.C. Railway stock to the same college to found a 'Thomas Warner Exhibition' in honour of his brother. He left the balance of his estate to the S.P.C.K.
FREDERICK* (1. 3 .1822-15 . 5 .1854)