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.


Major Settlement in the Parish of Tilton

Historical Forms

  • Elstede 1086 DB
  • Haldsted' 1230 P 1230 ChancR 1230 MemR 1236 Cur
  • Halt(e)sted 1249 Pat 1257 Pap
  • Hautsted' 1230 P
  • Hallested(e) c.1130 LeicSurv l.13 CRCart Edw1 CroxR 1465 AllS 1466 Pat
  • Hallesteyde 1315 AllS
  • Halested' 1198 GildR 1242 P 1276 RH l.13 Laz 1404
  • Halsted(e) 1209 Cur e.13 Peake 1227 GildR Hy3 Crox 1345 Inqaqd 1384 AllS 1541 MinAccts 1610 Speed
  • Halsteda 1167 P
  • Halsteyde 1305 AllS
  • Hausted(e) 1167 ChancR 1200 Cur 1242 P 1316 Misc 1328 Cl
  • Hausteda 1209×19 RHug
  • Haustead 1620 LML
  • Haulstead 1641 Surv
  • Hawstede 1351 MiD
  • Hawstead 1607 LAS
  • Haustide 1276 RH (p)
  • Halstyd 1469 AllS


The two elements which constitute this name are OE  (Angl ) hald 'protection' (developing as ME  hald , hold 'shelter, refuge') and OE  stede 'a place, a site', thus giving a general sense 'a place of protection'.Halstead occupies a fine hilltop location, but whether this place of protection originally referred to a fortified settlement is uncertain. K. Sandred in his English Place -Names in -stead (1745) includes Halstead (Lei, Ess, K) and the etymologically identical Hawstead (Sf) in a group of ancient names whose generics in stede he interprets as 'pasture (probably enclosed)' and also perhaps 'enclosure (for other purposes besides pasturing)'. Ekwall DEPN s. n. Halstead explains the appellative as 'a place of shelter for cattle'. The Anglo-Saxons used burh to signify an inhabited stronghold, so perhaps we should look to this particular place of protection as one to do with animal husbandry in uncertain times and especially referring to pasturage. A reasonable explanation of the appellative would be 'a protected place for pasturing livestock', v. hald 1 , stede and Ekwall Studies, 52.

Forms with u for l are due to AN influence. The rare spellings Haustide 1276 RH (p) and Halstyd 1469AllS may contain OE  styde , a secondary form of the generic stede .