52 Ancestors 52 Weeks, Names of Interest

Family Surname History – Washbrook

Unofficial Guide to Ancestry.com: How to Find Your Family History on the No.1 Genealogy Website

I am enjoying this series – Family Surname History.  Today I am introducing the family surname Washbrook.  Alice Elizabeth Washbrook was my paternal grandfather’s mother.





Family Surname History – Washbrook

Washbrook is of Olde English origin with the first recorded village of this name being in 1198 in Suffolk.1  It often thought to be of Lancashire origin, however, it is derived from East Anglia.1  Places called Washbrook exist in Suffolk, Somerset, and Lancashire.1 There are some alternative spellings including Washbrooke, Washbrick, Washbrekke.2


Distribution of Washbrook

Washbrook Surname Distribution Worldwide Surname Family History
Washbrook Surname Distribution Worldwide a

Forebears state the surname Washbrook is not a common name with it being listed as the 358,396th most common surname worldwide, with just 775 people with this name in 2014.2  It is most prevalent in England with 436 recorded instances.2  The other countries rounding out the top 5 are: Canada – 117, Australia – 85, France – 49, and the United States – 30.2


Family Surname History Washbrook Surname Distribution UK
Washbrook Surname Distribution UK b

Staffordshire, where my Washbrook family originates, it is most popular with 64 instances of this name and ranking in the region as the 2,054th most common surname.2 This is closely followed by Warwickshire with 62 instances, another area I have found Washbrook ancestors.2

Within the United Kingdom Washbrook is most commonly found in the Staffordshire – 64, Warwickshire – 62, Oxfordshire – 30, and Surrey – 27.2  When undertaking my research, I have found the Washbrook family congregated in the Staffordshire and Warwickshire regions.





Meaning of the Surname Washbrook

Washbrook is derived from broc (stream/brook) and waesse meaning through the marshy land.1


Famous Washbrook’s

Cyril Washbrook Family Surname History
Cyril Washbrookc

Cyril Washbrook (1914-1999) –  English Cricketer from 1933-1964.  Dad has told me that he is a cousin but I am yet to find the connection, although given the rarity of the surname it is likely.3


John “Johnny” Washbrook (Born 1944) – American actor most notably remembered from the TV Series ‘My Friend Flicka’ that first aired in 1955.4








Do you have the surname Washbrook in your family history?  Do you know where your family name originated from?

Click on the below image to search for your name at Findmypast. 

1. Surname Database, ‘Last Name: Washbrook’, http://www.surnamedb.com/Surname/Washbrook, Accessed 29 April 2018.
2. Forebears, ‘WASHBROOK Surname Meaning & Statistics’, http://forebears.io/surnames/washbrook, Accessed 29 April 2018.
3. Espninfo.com, ‘Cyril Washbrook, http://www.espncricinfo.com/england/content/player/22322.html, Accessed 29 April 2018.
4. IMDB.com, ‘Johnny Washbrook’, https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0913335/, Accessed 29 April 2018.


Image Credits
a. Surname Distribution,’Washbrook Surname Distribution Worldwide’, http://forebears.io/surnames/washbrook, Accessed 29 April 2018.
b. Washbrook Surname Distribution UK’, http://forebears.io/surnames/washbrook#nations2014, Accessed 29 April 2018.
c. CYRIL Cricket Country, ‘Cyril Washbrook’, st3.cricketcountry.com/wp-content/uploads/cricket/20150630032737.jpeg, Accessed 29 April 2018.

16 thoughts on “Family Surname History – Washbrook

  1. Hi Megan, what an interesting article. That is so neat to learn so much about your family history – I am not usually a history buff, but I love learning about my ancestors and relatives. I have mostly very common names in my lineage Wiebe, Douglas to name a couple. It makes it very difficult to look people up, my great grandparents on the Wiebe side were John and Mary Wiebe — I hear there were many couples with this name. Its a great conversation starter when you bump into others with the same last name though.
    Have a great day!

    1. Hi Tara

      I hear you with common surnames – I’m a Walker! Although, surprisingly this has been one of my easier names to research as there were some very uncommon first names used down my line. It is always a conversation starter if you come across someone with an unusual surname from your tree. I always make it a point to ask if I come across a Stokes, Washbrook, Osbaldstone (yet for that one), or Matheson, or Stockwell to see if we can find a connection! Family history is a great way to understand history. I love to look into how my family fits into the historical world around them – the World Wars, whilst horrific, are great for that!


  2. Hi Megan,
    It’s always interesting to understand who your ancestors are, where they came from, and how your family got to this great country. It’s more than a sense of history. I think it is an understanding of our fundamental values and how we pass those values on to our children. I know how interesting it was for me to learn how my great grandparents came from eastern Europe to the american shores.
    Thanks for this look at your family.

    1. Hi Steven

      I am glad you enjoyed my post. Like you, I love exploring where my ancestors came – it gives you a sense of belonging.


  3. This is interesting reading.

    I am originally from Bury in Manchester (UK). I was born in the 1970’s and back then Bury was considered to be in The Red Rose County. (Lancashire).

    I have never heard of this name (Washbrook) before however, but I always remember going to school with another boy whose surname was Threlfall. This name dates back into the 1800’s, so not as far back as Washbrook.

    I always like learning more about the old days, and this post is really good.

    Thanks, I enjoyed reading.


    1. Hi Chris

      I am really glad you found this name interesting. Even though Washbrook is from the Lancashire area it really hasn’t got a lot of people with this surname so I suppose it isn’t too surprising you haven’t come across it. I only came across the name as it is my paternal great-grandmother’s name. Thanks for leaving a comment – I love to hear my readers stories.


  4. Hi, Megan!

    This was such a delightful read! So interesting to get to know more about your ancestors.

    I was born in Brazil and there we are all a mix of different backgrounds. My ancestors, for example, were Portuguese (of course!), Dutchmen, and native-born. I don’t suppose it would be an easy task to track them all back.

    1. Hi Eliane
      I’m glad you found this post interesting. It is always fun to find out where you family came from – a connection with the past. I am sure you would be able to find plenty on your family – Find My Past and Ancestry have a extensive range of records from around the world. Let me know if I can help you in any way.

  5. Thank you for writing this review on the origins of the Washbrook family name. I am not a Washbrook myself but I still enjoyed reading about how old the name Washbrook is and it’s origins. It is nice that at least one member of the family rose to prominence. It is also interesting to see the migration history from Staffordshire to a lot of other countries. I can see how most people called Washbrook are related in one way or another. Thank you.

    1. Hi Glenys
      Thank you for taking the time to comment. I am glad you enjoyed learning about the surname Washbrook. It is clear that I would be related in some way to the Washbrook’s around the world.

  6. Another good post of your ancestors I think it is wonderful how you can track down your family members. I can’t say that I’ve ever heard of the name Washbrook are there any instances of them in the US?

    1. Hi Fred
      It isn’t a very common surname and seems to be mainly in England. The name Washbrook in the USA is ranked in 441,018th position and the USA is the fifth in the world rankings with this name but only 30 instances. So not a surname you are likely to come across in the USA.

  7. Hi, Megan

    My mother’s family were /are Washbrooks in Lancashire; Cyril was my mother’s cousin. But you are right; not a common name.

    1. Hello Helen

      It is so lovely to hear from another person related to the Washbrook’s. I met a cousin recently in the UK who is still a Washbrook – we share great-great grandparents. What was really funny is when I returned to Australia my sister-in-law asked who was in a particular photo with me as she could see a strong family resemblance and it was this particular cousin! Thank you so much for taking the time to comment.


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