Oxford Barber Shop relocates under new name Oxford in the Village

After VUMC terminated their lease with Oxford Barber shop after 60 years of operation, the shop has since reopened in Hillsboro Village under the new name Oxford in the Village.

Exterior of Oxford Barber Shop in black and white

The exterior of the old Oxford Barber Shop, photographed on December 4, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Jeremy Langsam)

Ryder Li, Staff Writer

Oxford Barber Shop, which continuously operated for over 60 years, closed its doors on Dec. 31 of last year after Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) terminated its lease with the shop. However, they have since relocated and opened under the new name Oxford in the Village.

The shop is now located at the corner of 21st Ave and Acklen Ave. BJ Holmes, a barber at the old Oxford Barber Shop who moved with the shop, spoke to The Hustler about the changes happening at the shop.

“The current shop is three times bigger,” Holmes said. “It has been a blessing in disguise. We got a bigger facility; and even though rent is higher, instead of one year lease, we have a four years lease. Before relocating, the possibility of VUMC tearing down the Oxford house was always on the back of our minds.”

Holmes commented that the decision to relocate was prompted by an unexpected opportunity as an  existing barber shop offered them their lease. With the new space, they are looking to hire one more barber and potentially rent the space out for after business hours.

“We were offered an existing barber shop in Hillsboro Village on Acklen Avenue that was once Uncle Classic Barber Shop,” Holmes said. “We would like to hire another barber. We are looking because the space is now 900 square feet. In addition, we want to do after hour events, where you could rent the whole barber shop. You can have it for your group, like fraternity, or groomsmen, where a bunch of guys could use the shop as a hang out space.” 

Holmes told The Hustler that their client base remains primarily old customers from Oxford Barber Shop, yet the pandemic is still negatively affecting their business.

“From the customers we are getting right now, 80 percent are probably old customers,” Holmes said. “We have students, doctors, or just regular shop customers. However the pandemic has cut the business to 60 percent of what we were before. All barber shops are seeing a loss of business.”

Holmes also noted that the barbers are now the owners of the shop, granting them more individual leeway with its design and uses.  

“Now that we are owners, the atmosphere is different,” Holmes said. “We upgraded it. It looks different.  It is very trendy, very Nashville. It is just more relaxed because we own it and have the ability to do what we want with it.”

Jeremey Langsam, a current sophomore at Vanderbilt, has been a long time customer of Oxford Barber Shop, and still regularly goes to the new location.

“I am still an active customer but haven’t been able to spread the word or help them advertise as much as I’d like,” Langsam said in a message to The Hustler. “They are a block away from me now, and I go whenever I need a haircut and have the time to.”