Weeke local History - Name



The Parish name has taken many forms. It has been written as Wyke, Wike, Weke, Weeke, and Week. It is thought that the name comes from Saxon word ‘wic’, a very common place name element. This means ‘specialised farm’ often meaning a dairy farm (Ekwall, 1964). The church has usually called the place ‘wyke’ and even in recent times it refers to ‘wyke alias Weeke’.

On most maps the name has been shown as Wyke or Weeke. There are several maps that show various versions of the name Bereweeke.

These include (URL 7):-

  1. 1607 a map by Norden shows Beareweek.
  2. 1611 a map by Speed shows Bearweeke.
  3. 1645 a map by Blaeu shows Bearweeke.
  4. 1695 a map produced by Morden shows Bearwecke.

The roots are thought to be ‘wic’ as above and ‘bere’ which has probably two meaning options. In Saxon it can mean ‘barley’ so could mean a farm growing barley and forms the root for the word ‘beer’. An earlier meaning for the word is an under-wood, scrub or copse, and so combined could mean a dairy farm with woodlands.

The name has been reused in modern times by the naming of Bereweeke Road, Avenue, Close and Way

Release 1.0 last update 11/12/07

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