John Blow Ashwell



ASHWELL, John Blow (1855-1910), town clerk, Stoke upon Trent.


John Blow Ashwell, the eldest son of Michael Hoole Ashwell  (medical officer of health) and his wife Catherine Lydia nee Glover, was born at Stoke upon Trent on 18 February 1855. 

He was educated in Malvern and at the Royal Medical College, Eton.  After being articled to Keary and Marshall, solicitors, Stoke upon Trent, he was admitted a solicitor in 1878 and practised on his own account until 1887. On the death of William Keary John Blow Ashwell joined the practice of Keary and Marshall. 

He was elected a councillor for Stoke upon Trent south ward in 1884 but resigned in 1889 to become town clerk of Stoke upon Trent. (see instructions on duties of cemetery registrar he issued)
He served in this office until federation in 1910, when he was elected a freeman
of the borough of Stoke upon Trent. He presented Stoke upon Trent's case at the parliamentary committee hearings in 1908.

His political views were Conservative and he acted as agent for Conservative candidates at a number of parliamentary elections. He was secretary of the School of Art for 20 years. He married Mary Edith Bird.

John Blow Ashwell died at his home at The Quarry, Hartshill, on 19 October 1910. His previous ill health was said to have been brought about by the stress incurred while preparing for federation. His family commemorated him by giving the clock in Penkhull church tower.


SOURCES: Federation Newscuttings (HRL); Staffs. Advertiser 22 October 1910 (obit ); A Dobraszczyc notes; People of the Potteries