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History and it's influence on Kirkby, Lancashire

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History and it's influence on Kirkby (if at all)

There has been a known settlement here since 870 AD but I have added other eras' to the list in case any future information comes up concerning the formation of the town. I understand that the majority of the information placed here will be from the latter centuries but feel free to add to any heading.

Ancient Britain (Prehistoric)

Neolithic Britain c12,000 BC–c2,750 BC

The Beaker people and the Bronze Age c2,750 BC–750 BC

Although thought to have been founded aound 870 AD excavations in the grounds of St. Chad's Vicarage found evidence of a bronze age settlement.[1]. The 1995 excavation revealed evidence of a structure, pottery, tools and charcoal. And later a 'bronze socketed axe' and a 'bronze spearhead Undated)' had been found. [2]

Iron Age c750 BC–43 AD

The Middle Ages

Roman Britain 43 AD–Approx 425 AD

While there was no known Roman settlement or road in or around where Kirkby would develop there was a report of a very small find of roman coins in 'the township of Simonswood' in the brook bearing the same name in 1893. and in the same report it was noted that in Kirkby there was found the remains of a roman pavement and a crock. Neither of which survives today. The same article has a footnote proposing a small road may have passed close to the area.[3]

Anglo–Saxon(The Dark Ages) 42 AD-51066 AD

Tradition has it that a settlement and a simple chapel was founded here in 870 AD[4]


Norman period 1066–1154

Kirkby or Cherchebi (first mentioned 1086 in the Domesday Book). The church village. From Old Norse kirkiu-býr. Karkebi (1186); Kierkebi (1207), Kyrkeby (1288).[5]
According to the Doomsday Book mentioned above the lands in which Kirkby stood were at that time part of Cheshire and they were in the hands of Uhtræd of Little Crosby along with 18 other holdings in Cheshire alone[6]

See the website Pase Doomsday for more information on the man behind the name of Uhtræd of Little Crosby

The Anarchy 1135–1148

The Anarchy was a civil war in England and Normandy between 1135 and 1153, which resulted in a widespread breakdown in law and order. The conflict was a succession crisis precipitated by the accidental death by drowning of William Adelin, the only legitimate son of Henry I, in a shipwreck in 1120. Henry's attempts to install his daughter, the Empress Matilda, as his successor were unsuccessful and on Henry's death in 1135, his nephew Stephen of Blois seized the throne with the help of Stephen's brother, Henry of Blois, Bishop of Winchester.[7]

Which is a rather tame statement of a war that went on for nearly 20 years. After his coronation in 1135 Stephen was soon having problems with the north especially Scotland

The Plantagenets 1154–1399

Hundred Years War with France 1337–1453

Wars of the Roses 1455–1485

Early Modern Britain

Tudor period 1485–1603

Stuarts Period 1603-1717

Georgian Britain 1714-1837

Victorian Britain 1837-1901

Edwardian Britain1901-1914

Modern 1

The Great War (WWI) 1914-1918

Inter-war Years 1918-1939

The Second World War

Modern 2

Britain Since 1945


  1. https://web.archive.org/web/20080107183518/http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/maritime/exhibitions/magical/placenames/kirkby.asp
  2. https://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/mol/archaeology/historic-characterisation-project/Knowsley-Part-6.pdf
  3. https://www.hslc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/4344-13-Hill.pdf
  4. http://archives.knowsley.gov.uk/kirkby/timeline-kirkby/
  5. https://web.archive.org/web/20090214022815/http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/maritime/exhibitions/magical/placenames/kirkby.asp
  6. http://www.pase.ac.uk/jsp/Domesday?op=5&nameinfo_id=3546
  7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Anarchy

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