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The Origin Of The Village Name

Nowadays known only as Thorganby, the parish is actually an amalgamation of both Thorganby and West Cottingwith, both of which have their own history whilst having lived cheek by jowl through the ages. The parish name change of Thorganby with West Cottingwith to Thorganby occurred on 1st April, 1937 as an administrative action by the then East Riding County Council.

It seems safe to assume, given the proximity of the regional centre of York - Eboracum to the Romans - some 8 miles away and the nearness of the then tidal river Derwent that this area would have been well known to both Romans and Vikings. There is evidence of a Roman road running North from the village. The Viking nature of the name of Thorganby which can be translated as ‘farmstead or village of a man called Thorgrímr’ from the Old Scandinavian personal name + bý: Although the Thorganby that we know was also known as Turgisbi in 1086 and Turgrimebi in 1192. As for the West Cottingwith origins I will leave the reader to work out the” West” whilst noting Cottingwith was Coteuuid in 1086 and Cotingwic in 1195. The overall breakdown would appear to be that “Cott” was a man’s name; “ing” referred to his dairy farm, both from the Old English, whilst the “with” is a Viking, or Old Scandinavian, extension referring to a wood.

There are several sites within and around the Parish which indicate that the area was populated in the Iron Age.

Conservation Area

The village has long been scheduled as a Conservation area, meaning that modern development has been limited in number and largely controlled in appearance. This level of planning protection has encouraged ownership pride so that the housing stock is well maintained and the appearance of the whole displays a sympathetic continuity aware of its history but very much involved with the 21st century.


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© Andrew Dudley-Smith 2014