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 Distington

Historical Forms

  • Gillegarran a.1230 HolmC
  • Gilgerra 1292 Ass
  • Gilgarran 1321,1334,1348 Ipm
  • Gilgaran 1338 Cl
  • Gylgaron 15th HolmC
  • Gilgarren 1503 Cocker


Whellan. As noted by Ekwall (ScandCelts 25) this is probably an inversion compound (Introduction) with gil as the first element. The second may be Gael gearrán , 'gelding,' used as a nickname. If so, 'Gearrán 's ravine.' The medieval use of Garran as a surname in Cumberland is shown by the names of David and Robert Garran , villeins in Beckermet in 1294 (Cl).