The first record I have of my grandfather Thomas Gateley was his marriage in 1883 in Rushall, Walsall, Staffs. He gave his age as 21. He recorded his father as Benjamin Gateley, a marine store dealer. His father's name was repeated as Benjamin when he married the second time in 1909.
On the 1891 census he gave his birthplace as Walsall but I have information on the couple of Thomas Gateley births in Walsall at around the right time and neither was son of Benjamin. When I was beginning my researches some of his children were still alive and they told me he wasn't the sort of guy one asked personal questions! They didn't know where he came from but probably Ireland. He obviously didn't like being asked questions for the 1891 census as his answers were very unhelpful altogether. I've not found him in England and Wales on the 1881 census.
There were a number of Gateley families in the Walsall area, all originating from around Roscommon, and I think he may have come over from Ireland shortly before 1883 to join one of the families there, but I have no idea which one. I have no indication that there was ever a Benjamin Gateley in Walsall and I can't find one on the IGI for Ireland.
The only other thing I know about his origins is that he had a sister Margaret Gateley born about 1857, who married Thomas James and had a family of many sons in the Walsall area.