ORIGINS OF THE NAME
|At the time of the writing
of the Domesday Book the name of the village
was spelt Botestoche. To discover the meaning of the name of the place two
syllables need to be considered - Bote
and stoche. The second
element is a Saxon word meaning a secondary settlement or outlying farm.
Such settlements were invariably surrounded by a fence of tree-stumps -
hence the word stockade. The first element of the name is derived from a
personal name, perhaps alluding to Saint Botolf who introduced the
Benedictine monastic order to England in the 7th century and died in 680.
Throughout England tere are numerous churches dedicated to his memory as
well as the city of Boston (Lincolnshire) and several villages such as
Botesdale (Suffolk). From this
breakdown there are two possible interpretations. Either, a secondary
settlement held by a man named ‘Bote’; or a farm or secondary
settlement of the Benedictine monks. Of the two theories, I prefer
Bostock was a secondary settlement then which settlement was the primary
one? This is likely to be Davenham: this place-name meaning a village by
the river Dane, is a more ancient form. The term 'ham' often refers to a
local administrative centre (e.g. Weaverham, Frodsham, etc.) and so
Davenham may have been an old Saxon estate centre with its constituent
parts at Shurlach, Leftwich, Eaton, Moulton, Wharton, Bostock, Shipbrook
and Whatcroft - all of which suggest secondary importance.