Whats in a name ?

Goodshaw – Gods wood (shaw)
Loveclough – the pool (lough) in the cleft (clough or cluff) of the hill.
Crawshawbooth – the Booth (collection of herders huts) in the wood (shaw) were the crow’s (craw) live.
Rawtenstall – the farmstead or cattle sheds (stall) on rough ground (routen).
The river is named after the cargo of lime that pack horses would carry, They occassionally spilt lime into the river turning it a limey colour.

The recognised authority on place-name origins is the quaintly named Eilert Ekwall who compiled an enormous dictionary on the subject.

So far as our area is concerned, Ekwall tells us the following:


Crawshawbooth is first named as Croweshagh in 1324. By 1507, the name had changed to Crawshaboth. The name refers to a crows’ wood with the word “booth” (meaning a dairy farm) added. The middle element – shaw – is derived from the Old English word “scaga” which means either a thicket or small wood or grove.


Goodshaw appears variously as Goodshaw Booth or Godeshagh or Godishaw in 1324. The name refers to Gōda’s or GōdgӯÞ’s “scaga” (wood). GōdgӯÞ was a woman’s name, possibly derived from the Old English GōÞda. As to “booth”, this is derived from the Old English BOÞE. A BoÞ – from which we derive the regional “bothy” – was either a byre or cowhouse or herdsman’s hut.


Perhaps the least interesting the three local names is Loveclough. This appears in various formats: as Lugheclogh/Lufclough in 1324, Lufclogh in1325 and Luffecloch in 1464. Ekwall has little to say, other than that Lufi/Lufa was a person whose name – an Old English name – became attached to the area.

Source: Eilert Ekwall, Place-names of Lancashire

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