This very unusual and interesting surname, is generally accepted as being English and specifically from the Midlands. It is certainly a midlands surname, but its origins are in fact French! It derives from 'loche', and old French word which describes a fresh water fish, and presumably was applied as a nickname surname to a fresh water fisherman. This is to some extent proven by the coat of arms granted in Brittany, France, before 1792, which has the blazon of three silver fish, palewise two and one, on a black field. Quite when the name appeared in England is not certain, although it was well established in Warwickshire in the 16th century. There may be some connection with recording such as for instance, Robert Atteloc, recorded in the year 1300. In this case the 'lok' apparently refers to a stretch of fresh water, used for fish farming. Examples of the surname spellings include Loache and Loach in England, and Loche, Lochet, Locard, and Lockhart in France. The latter also being a prominent Scottish clan surname - although like 'Loach' it originated from France in the 12th century. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Loache, which was dated February 3rd 1593, recorded at Alveston, Warwickshire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as 'Good Queen Bess', 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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