English Place-name Society

Survey of English Place-Names

A county-by-county guide to the linguistic origins of England’s place-names – a project of the English Place-Name Society, founded 1923.


Early-attested site in the Parish of Audlem and Wrenbury

Historical Forms

  • Bromkelawa c.1130 Cott.Faust.Bviii 1479
  • Broncelow 12 Sheaf328 18
  • Bronchelau 12 Dugdv326
  • Branchelow 12 Sheaf3 18
  • Brankelow 1133and1577(18) Sheaf3 1831 Bry
  • Branchehillaue 1540 Dugdv327
  • Branchehilawe c.1550 Surv


The final el. is hlāw 'a hill, a mound'. Branch of Wood (109– 588455), 1831 Bry, 1842 OS, is probably another form of the same name, with wudu 'a wood', in which an alternative, assibilated [tʃ] is preserved. Barnes1 698 suggests a Welsh pers.n. Branoc for the first el. It might also be a PrW p.n., 'wood on the breast of a hill', from the antecedent of Welsh bron (n ) 'a breast, a hill' (cf. Corn  bron EPN s.v.) and cēto-. However, Professor Löfvenberg notes that, if the form with -m - is correct, the first el. may be an OE  *brōmuc 'a clump of broom', which he also takes as the first el. of Branksome 231.