Place names in Old Rochdale

The name Rochdale has changed its spelling over the last 1,000 years. The name first appears in writing in the Domesday Book dated 1086 as 'Recedham' which has Anglo-Saxon origins meaning “village”. Around 1190-98 the name “Rachedal” first appeared – from “dael” meaning “valley”.

This modern version of 'Rochdale' is derived from “rockr”, the old Norse for rock and dale from the Norse 'daal' which means a wide valley.

Rochdale was originally covered by a large forest. Early settlers made clearings amongst the trees which were known as 'rods' and so names such as Oakenrod and Coptrod emerged


A History of The Parish of Rochdale, H Fishwick

Rochdale and The Vale of Whitworth, William Robertson

Links to the Domesday Book:

National Archives

Domesday Book