It’s Namesake Day and in Yorkshire there are lots of places named after famous people and other towns, or which gave their own names to others. Here are a few namesake tales from Yorkshire:
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Robin Hood’s Bay
Named after the famous hero. Legend holds that Robin Hood chased off French pirates who had threatened fishermen’s boats on the northeast coast. Robin Hood returned the stolen items to the poor people in the village that is now called Robin Hood’s Bay.
Richmond-on-Thames was named after the historic North Yorkshire town of Richmond located on a hill next to the River Swale. Richmond-upon-Thames was founded following King Henry VII’s building in the 16th century of Richmond Palace (so-named in 1501), from which the town derives its name. Richmond Palace itself commemorates King Henry’s earldom of Richmond, North Yorkshire, the original Richmond.
There’s an Aldborough in Norfolk and an Aldborough in Yorkshire, but which came first? Both are mentioned in the Domesday Book though Aldborough (Yorkshire)’s settlements date to Roman times and Aldborough (Norfolk)’s name appears to originate from Viking settlers, so potentially the Yorkshire Aldborough came first.
Aldborough in Yorkshire was a large ancient parish, which included townships in both the West Riding of Yorkshire and across the River Ure in the North Riding. It was built on the site of a major Romano-British town, Isurium Brigantum. The Brigantes, the most populous Celtic tribe in the area at the time of the Roman occupation of Britain, used the settlement as a capital. There are records from AD150 and 1086.
Aldborough in Norfolk is a village and former civil parish, now in the parish of Aldborough and Thurgarton (together with Thurgarton), around eight miles (13 km) south of Cromer.
The name “Aldborough” derives from the Old English ald (old) and burh (fortification). The names of Aldborough and other local villages such as Thurgarton, Saxthorpe and Corpusty are thought to have been named by Viking settlers after their home villages of Aldbjerg, Thorgarten, Saxtorp and Korrupstie in Scandinavia. Aldborough, its Church and the mill are all mentioned in the Domesday book.
A little village near Rotherham bears the name of a nation 100 miles to the West – why?
The derivation may be the same as the nation of Wales if it bears the same Anglo Saxon (and Germanic) root meaning Romanised foreigner(s). An alternative explanation suggests that the settlement’s name may be derived from the word Waelas, meaning “field of battle”.
The earliest reference to Wales is in 1002, when Wulfric Spot, a Saxon thegn, is recorded as owning Walesho.
Notable attractions near to Wales, Yorkshire, include Rother Valley Country Park and Gulliver’s Valley Theme Park.
Your favourite Yorkshire namesake
Tell us about your favourite Yorkshire namesakes in the comments below.