Oxford History: The High


9: Whistles

9 High Street

No. 9 was rebuilt in the Georgian style by G. T. Gardner in 1934. It was part of Webber's from 1956 to 1971.

Former building on this site

In 1772 a survey of every house in the city was taken in consequence of the Mileways Act of 1771. According to Salter, No. 9 was then in the occupation of a Mr Millachip, and its frontage measured 7 yards 0 feet 4 inches.

This building was in the parish of All Saints until that church was deconsecrated in 1971.

At the time of the 1851 census, No. 9 was a draper’s shop. Edward Beaumont, the proprietor (described as the employer of 32 men) lived over the shop with his wife and baby son Edward Beaumont junior, and with them lodged no fewer than six draper’s assistants, four draper’s apprentices, two draper’s milliners, a housekeeper, and two general servants.

In 1861 the upstairs was let out to Robert Goodwin, a mercer and draper who presumably worked for Beaumont: he lived here with his wife, four apprentices, nine assistants, and a female apprentice dressmaker.

In 1871 it was occupied by a shop walker, ten assistants, and two apprentices

By the time of the 1881 census Edward Beaumont junior had taken over his father's business, and over the shop lodged 18 of his employees: two male draper’s clerks, twelve male draper’s assistants, two female draper’s assistants, a housekeeper, and a general servant.

Edward Beaumont junior joined No. 10 on to this shop in 1882, and in 1884 he moved out of this shop and opened a large new shop at Nos. 10–12 to the east, which he renamed the City Drapery Stores.


In 1908 this shop was altered for Mowbray's, the church publishers. No one here at the time of the 1911 census. The shop was rebuilt for Mowbray's in 1936, and they continued to occupy it shop until 1954. It then became part of Webber's.

Occupiers of 9 High Street  
Grey shading indicates an earlier building on the site


Forster & Bartlett, Linen drapers


Richard Chilton, Linen draper


Chilton & Beaumont, Linen drapers


Beaumont & Goodwin


E. Beaumont & Son, Linen drapers & silk merchants [also at No. 10 from 1882]




Standen & Co., Tailors & robe makers


A. R. Mowbray & Co., Church publishers [rebuilt in 1936]


Part of Webbers (see Nos. 10–12)


Costa International Menswear (also at Nos. 10–13)


Jean Machine Co.

By 1988–present

Whistles, Ladies’ fashion

Upstairs (accessed from Market Avenue 1): Formerly The Avenue Bar
and now The Varsity Club

©Stephanie Jenkins

Last updated: 29 March, 2019

The High home Small Shark Oxford History home