You posted this ages ago so don't know if you've had any luck with John by now.
Looking at the Gosport connection there are several John Lawes' in Hampshire in the 1871 census. Simply going by distance from Gosport the most likely for your John is one aged 66, living in Upham but born in Bishop's Waltham. According the map (my knowledge of Hampshire is not great!) they are close together between Winchester and Fareham, not very far from Gosport. This John has a wife Elizabeth and a grandson William aged 11. Does Elizabeth fit in with Henry's birth certificate?
Other possibilities (all Hampshire) are:
1. John Lawes age 42 born Godshill living Ashley Walk
2. John Lawes age 83 born Upham inmate at Droxford (Hospital or poor-house??)
3. John Lawes age 65 born Wherwell living St Michael
4. John Lawes age 51 born Whitchurch living Whitchurch
5. John Lawes age 56 born Downton Wiltshire but living Millbrook Hampshire.
But is the Gosport thing is a red herring and is simply the home town of Emma? Funny, otherwise, that Henry was born in London and went back there to live after his marriage. Pity that John Lawes is such a relatively common name, but there do not seem to be any of the right age in London in 1871. As you have Henry's marriage certificate, what does it give for John's occupation? I was wondering whether he can be linked to any of mine from the Durham/Sunderland area. Just to add to the confusion, these were all just LAW until the mid-1800's.
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