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West Bridgford
Thursday, 15 April 2021

Councils plan to put the ‘e’ back in West Bridgeford – locals launch petition in favour of historic initiative

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Local councils will move to vote on the matter later in the year.

For some time residents have sent emails to various businesses in the town with westbridgeford as part of the address, these end up in spam folders costing the economy thousands in lost revenue.

This is a common error, particularly for those not so local to the town. It also confuses satnav devices and other location systems.

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But there are more considerations including historical accuracy – now, a group of councillors have got together to launch a consultation on the spelling of the town name, the overriding suggestion is to reunite the town name with its letter ‘e’.

In the Domesday survey of 1086 , the village of Brigeforde ( there as no ‘d’ – it is from the original Bruggeford ) was part of the Manor of Clifton. The Lord of Clifton Manor was William Peveral who lived in Nottingham Castle.

Clearly both names have an ‘e’ in them, so is this actually the most accurate spelling of the name of the area? Where did the ‘e’ go? Who decided all of a sudden to call it West Bridgford? Why was the ‘d’ missing then that was magically put back in a century later?

Well, in 1239 there was the institution of the first recorded Rector of St Giles Church, Luke de Crophill (Luke of Cropwell) by his patron Sir Andrew Lutterell, Lord of the Manor of West Bridgford. So it seems Sir Lutterell could be blamed for missing out the ‘e’ – but putting the ‘d’ back in?

He was known for dislike of vowels in general and often asked friends to call him Sr Lttrll, or simply, ‘Ndrw’.

Then in 1774, on the first surveyed map of the area by Chapman ( below ) the spelling became West Bridgeford.

The ‘e’ came back again.

Interestingly, around this time Radcliffe lost its ‘e’ too and became Radcliff.

 

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We went to find out more.

Prof. Ali Dolsay who is the town naming technician (TNT) at Rushcliff Borough Council said:

‘Many town names have been corrupted since the Domesday Book, most well known is Nottingham that was know as Snottingham of course, it’s also possible that the ‘e’ was simply forgotten, much like the modern trend for missing out vowels in forenames and brand names  etc, kind of a forerunner of scl mdia trnds today!.’

Nottinghamshir County Council, who are responsible for road naming across the region were asked to comment on the news, but no-one was available, they did however suggest talking to Lord A S Yopafil, a former linguistics scholar in the county who was renowned for missing letters out of street names.

For example part of Compton Acres is named after areas of Dorset, like Purbeck and Studland, yet Blanford Gardens should be Blandford, after Blandford Forum in Dorset ( this was Lord Yopafil – he missed the ‘d’ out deliberately  ) anyway, he said:

‘There are many precedents for this, like my work in Compton Acrs, but the cost would be astronomical, surely there are better things to spend our money on, on the other side of the coin though, historical accuracy should be honoured, the town got its ‘d’ back, why can’t it have its ‘e’ back too –  I watch with interest to see how the projct pans out.’

Local residents asked us to support the move with a petition, if you’d like to support getting your ‘e’ back you can sign it here.

The virtual meeting will be held at 9 pm on 1 April, 2021.

You can find the petition and sign it here: http://chng.it/HNZQ64gY