Cosy crimes and gritty sagas by Corrie Blog editor Glenda, published by Headline. Click pic below!

Monday 16 March 2020

You Sound Like You're From Weatherfield

I’ve always been interested in accents and dialects and my party trick, if I was asked to perform one, is recognising where someone’s accent is from. I should actually work for MI5 now I think about it.

I blogged a few years ago about some of the accents we hear on Corrie.

But today, as the sad news broke of the passing of Roy Hudd, it struck me that it’s not only accents that make Corrie what it is, but names too. Some names just scream ‘working class’. And I hope that doesn’t offend anyone. My surname – Dawson – sounds very working class and British to me and I like it.  I’m actually double-barrelled but my other surname is Hungarian and difficult to pronounce so I avoid using it (sorry Grandad Schmolczer). And I was born a McDonnell; my birth family hail from the West coast of Ireland. You can understand why I want to keep it simple.

Some names scream money. A Farquhar, de Courcy or Saxe-Coburg-Gotha for example are not likely to be popping into the Kabin for a book of stamps and a quarter of mint imperials. Nor is a Rhind-Tutt or Rockerfeller.

But Shuttleworth is a VERY Corrie name. Archie Shuttleworth, played by the late Roy Hudd was the much loved undertaker who stole several hearts on Coronation Street. The character died back in 2018.

Diggory Compton, the bakery owning father of Molly Dobbs, has a great Corrie name. As do the Tinkers. The name Tinker in old English apparently means someone who mends pots and pans. Very working class. I like old English names like that, either relating to a clan or profession. Shuttleworth is said to mean “gated enclosure” and Compton means “short, straight valley”.

I’m not sure a great deal of research goes into the meaning of names and their corresponding characters on Corrie, but you can tell some names are chosen simply because of how they sound. Northern, and working class.

Here are some other Corrie names I like the sound of, and what they mean (thanks

Jack and Vera Duckworth

English (chiefly Lancashire): habitational name from Duckworth Fold, in the borough of Bury, Lancashire, which is named from Old English fuce 'duck' + wor{dh} 'enclosure'.

Jack and Vera are lovely working class first names too. Jack is very much back in fashion now.

The Websters

The surname Webster is derived from the Old English word webbestre, which originally meant female weaver.

The Barlows

A habitational name from any of several places called Barlow, especially those in Lancashire and West Yorkshire. The former is named with Old English bere 'barley' + hlaw 'hill'; the latter probably has as its first element the derived adjective beren or the compound bere-ærn 'barn'.

Ena Sharples

The Anglo-Saxon name Sharples comes from the family having resided in Sharples Hall near Bolton in the county of Lancashire. This habitation surname was originally derived from the Old English word scearp meaning sharp and laes meaning pasture.

The name Ena means "fire" - which is apt.

The Grimshaws

Habitational name from either of two places in Lancashire, named Grimshaw, from the Old Norse personal name Grímr (see Grime) or Old English grima 'specter', 'goblin' + Old English sceaga 'copse'. Similar surnames: Grimstad, Renshaw, Grimley, Henshaw, Crawshaw, Redshaw, Grimsrud.
I love saying this name. Grim-shaw.

The Tanners.

Tanner is a mainly masculine given name meaning "leather maker."


The Ogdens.

Habitational name from some minor place, probably the one in West Yorkshire, called Ogden, from Old English ac ‘oak’ + denu ‘valley’.

Again Hilda is a nice old fashioned English name, you can imagine lots of Hildas around during the early 1900s into the 20th century. Not so many now. And Ogden sounds very familiar to me, coming from Rochdale.

There are loads more. Which names do you like the sound of?


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C in Canada said...

Great post! I've always found the origins of names fascinating!

Stevie said...

Thanks C - hope all's well in Canada x

coconno196 said...

Very useful info. One funny thing about the Corrie actors is that many of them are from Yorkshire, which explains the huge variety of accents. Lancashire and Yorkshire accents are similar, but not the same. Bolton is instantly recognisable (Peter Kay, Paddy McGuinness).

C in Canada said...

@Stevie - doing ok except this virus is taking hold. Otherwise we just curl up and watch our favorite soap lol.
I love to check this site and get all the dirt on what's coming up, as well as the fun posts like this one that are just plain fun to read!
Keep up the good work kids!

Catsmom said...

Shoot, what about Windass? I paged down this page to see if that was included. That name just sounds too weird to be a real name.

Stevie said...

The surname Windass was first found in Lancashire at Windle with Hardshaw, a township, in the parish and union of Prescot, hundred of West Derby. "Before the reign of John, Windhull gave name to a family, of whom was Edusa, widow of Alan de Windhull, who obtained from that king a summons for her dower against Alan de Windhull, son of the former." [1]

By the reign of Edward III., the manor was held by William Boteler, but there is no record as to why the manor was lost. Another source shows in the year 1201, Alan de Windhull held estates at Windle.

@Catsmom - yes, Windass is a great one! Although the origins on Ancestry are a little long-winded:

"The Manor of Skelmerdale in Lancashire proved to reveal some interesting details about the family. According to the Domesday Book, it was originally held by Uctred, who also held Dalton and Uplitherland. It was later part of the forest fee, held by the Gernet family.

Later, "there had been a sub-infeudation of the manor in favour of Alan de Windle, for in 1202 Edusa his widow claimed dower in this among other manors, which she released to Alan's son Alan, upon an assignment of her dower here and in other lands." [2] The Windle manor passed, like Windle itself, to the Burnhulls and Gerards by the 15th century."

Catsmom said...

@Stevie, thanks for the info! Fascinating!

Anonymous said...

What about Gee? - 3 Corrie Characters with that name Fred, Edna and Eunice


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