Maythorn Mill & the Nottinghamshire SWARBROOKES

My Swarbrooke Ancestors

Origins of the Swarbrooke Surname

"SWARBROOKE is a variant of the more common Locational name SWARBRICKE, which means "from Swarbricke in the parish of Kirkam, Lancashire" ( a small settlement first mentioned in the 13th Century).

This name derives from the Old Norse SVART "dark" and the Old English BRYGG " a bridge." Early recorded instances of the surname include the Grant of Administration of the Estate of John Swartbrecke of Rossaker at the Archdeaconry Court of Richmond in 1581, and probate of the wills of William Swarthbricke, a yeoman, and of William Swarbreck both of Rossaker at the same court in 1619 and 1676 respectively. Christopher Swarbricke of Poulton, son of John, was admitted to the Guild of Preston in 1642.

It appears that a branch of the Swarbricke family migrated to Cheshire in the late Seventeenth century, and their name soon became altered to Swarbrook. The will of William Swarbrick, a carpenter of Mawdesley was proved at Chester in 1692, Laurence Swarbreck married at Chester in 1740 and Grace Swarbrooke was married at Weaverham in 1731. Therafter the form of Swarbrook predominated in Cheshire records.

No Coat of Arms has been identified which is properly associated with the name Swarbrooke nor with any etymological or orthograpic variants thereof.

The above information was supplied by Dr Richard Baker of "The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies" at Canterbury, and contradicts the information supplied through these "Hall of Names" computers that you find in Shopping Malls and the Seaside concerning a Coat of Arms for your Surname.

According to the "Hall of Names" and the "Heraldic Research Centre", the Coat of Arms is "Argent, three squirrels sejant gules", which belongs to SWARLAND not Swarbrooke, and the crest "A squirrel sejant gules" does not exist on the Swarland Arms, so they have made that up. They also quoted "Lancashire Wills at Richmond", but this is not a document, but an Index published by the Lancashire and Cheshire Record Society.


Going back to the Information supplied by Dr Richard Baker of the Institute at Canterbury, I can't say that I agree 100% with his findings on how the name changed from Swarbrick to Swarbrook, as I have found the name SWARBROOKE elsewhere as listed below:-     


Ann Swarbrook wed Nicholas Brightwell at St James Church, Dukes Place, 4th Feb 1688.

Alice Swarbrook wed Richard Bartup at St Benet, Pauls Wharf on 30th July 1735.

Alice Swarbrook wed Samuel Candy at St Martin in the Field on 11th March 1758.

Robert and Catherine Swarbrook had three of their children baptized at St Annes, Soho

and St Sepulchre in 1764 (Robert), 1766 ( Catherine Matilda) and 1774 (Thomas).


John Swarbrooke wed Kath Poole at Yarnton in 1613.

Elizabeth Swarbrooke wed Rych Mason at Glympton in 1615.

John Swarbrooke was baptized on 9th Feb 1616 at Kidlington.

Richard Swarbrooke was baptized on 3rd March 1621 at Kidlington.

Alice Swarbrooke wed Micheal Rogers at Watlington in 1655 by Banns.


John Swarbrooke wed ? ? on 10th Oct 1608 at Shipston on Stour.

Ann Swarbrooke wed Edmund Chantril on 16th May 1661 at Pershore, St Crucis.

Rebecca Swarbrooke baptized 21st Mar 1674 at Kempsey.

Thomas Swarbrook wed Alicia Green on 25th May 1693 at Pirton.

Thomas Swarbrooke baptized on 25th June 1694 at Pirton.

Anna Swarbrooke baptized on 26th April 1697 at Pirton.

Richard Swarbrooke baptized on 24th June 1700 at Pirton.

Thomas Swarbrook baptized on 23rd Sep 1719 at Pirton.

All the above were originally taken from the 1988 IGI. (International Genealogical Index) and it would appear that John Swabrooke of Shipstone on Stour (probably born about 1587) is the earliest known bearer of the SWARBROOKE surname todate.