Recorded in several spellings includings Bowsway, Busway, Bushaway, and possibly Bushawe, this is clearly an English surname. Rare, but relatively well recorded in the diocese of Greater London since at least Cromwellian times, it is almost certainly from either a 'lost' village name, that is to say that it is a locational surname from a place which has now completely disappeared from the maps, and probably did many centuries ago, or it is a transposed spelling of some other name or place name. Both are equally logical. it is known that at least three thousand surnames of the British Isles do originate from 'lost' sites, of which the only reminder in the late 20th century, is usually the surviving surname. As to why places vanished has been the subject of many books. In general it can be put down to changes in agricultural practices, or the enclosure of the common lands by greedy land owners, or plague and pestilence, and sometimes even war. The name may mean the road through the bush, from the Olde English pre 7th century 'byse-weg'. The first recording that we have been able to find in surviving church registers is that of Ann Busway, who married Will Brackin at the church of St Margaret Pattens in the city of London, on December 5th 1650, and several centuries later in the reign of Queen Victoria, that of Robert Bushaway, who married Caroline Scrivener at St Matthews, Bethnal Green, on May 2nd 1852.
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