Oxford History: The High


13: David Clulow (Luxottica Eyeware)

13 High Street

The present Nos. 13–16 High Street were built in 1773–4 by John Gwynn to form the frontage to the new covered market and were known as “New Parade”. Nos. 13, 14, and 15 are jointly Grade II listed (List Entry No. 1369376, numbered as 12–15). No. 16 on the right is separately Grade II listed (List Entry No. 1047270). The four shops forming the original market front were in the parish of All Saints until that church was deconsecrated in 1971. They are now in the parish of St Michael-at-the-Northgate Church.

There is an avenue into the market in the centre of this group between Nos. 14 and 15, and one each side. The entrance shown on the left above was once the entrance furthest to the west, but following the expansion of the market another entrance was made through No. 10 High Street.

The first occupier of No. 13 was James Clarke (the son-in-law of Alderman James Austin). He wrote on the wet plaster “James Clarke, mercer, 1774”. He was in partnership with Thomas Castle and his business here in the “New Parade” was Clark & Castle until Thomas Castle opened his own shop in Cornmarket on 15 April 1780. James Clarke took over his father-in-law's shop in Cornnmarket.

At the time of the 1841 census the hatter Nathaniel Castle lived her over his shop with his wife Mary, two apprentices, a clerk, and a servant, plus a student lodger. He and his wife were still here in 1851 with hs apprentice Robert Juggins, two servants, and two student lodgers.

On 5 April 1856 Nathaniel Castle announced in Jackson's Oxford Journal that in fulfilment of the wishes of his former partner Robert Juggins he had taken his nephew William Robert Juggins into partnership with himself.

In 1861 the hatter & hosier John Juggins lived here over his shop with his wife and son and two servants.

Photograph of 13 High Street by Henry Taunt when Miss Alice Slade was a milliner here (1882–1903)

Gridiron Club

The upstairs of No. 13 was home to the Gridiron Club from 1890 to 1913 (when it moved to premises over the Midland Bank near Carfax). The 1901 census shows Edwin Cross, the club manager, living at the club with his wife Eliza and four servants (a housemaid, kitchenmaid, kitchen porter, and page boy).

In 1911 his widow Eliza Cross (59) was now the club manager and lived in the eighteen rooms over these premises with the club's bookkeeper, page, and general servant.

Occupiers of 13 High Street


James Clarke, mercer

By 1830–1861

Jenkins & Castle (to 1837)
Nathaniel Castle, Hatter, hosier, etc. (by 1844 to his death in 1860)
Mrs Castle (1861)


John Juggins, Hatter & hosier


Miss Alice Slade, Milliner, florist, &c.


Part of City Drapery Stores


Johnson Bros., Dyers
Bradbury & Hay, Tailors


Johnson Bros., Dyers
James E. Hall, Tobacconist

1915 –1923

Johnson Bros., Dyers

Sydney Herbert Jones, Tobacconist (1915–1918)
Charles P. Webber, Art Needlework Department (1919–1923)


C. P. Webber (see also Nos. 9, 10–12, and 15)


Costa International Menswear (also at 9–12)


Stag Shop, Men’s wear

By 1995–2014

Skipton Building Society




David Clulow (Luxottica Eyeware)


©Stephanie Jenkins

Last updated: 20 July, 2021

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