Character Names

7 May

A rare non-fic piece from me. Just wanted to share something that has amused me recently.

I’m from Norfolk, which is chock full of villages with interesting names. Places like Wymondham (Wind-um) and Happisburgh (Hays-bra), and my old school Costessey (Cossy) are quite famous for being rather strangely spelt. A recent holiday to Devon and Cornwall has also thrown up some good ones. In fact driving in the country anywhere in the UK is now a source of inspiration!

However, there are some brilliant names that would make equally brilliant character names. Either the two worded ones such as Stratton Strawless or Newton Flotman, or seeing two villages together on a sign works just as well. Torrington Winkleigh particularly tickled me this weekend!

So hopefully at some point, I’ll have some stories featuring Sticklepath Chagford or Tedburn St Mary. The list goes on and on. Look out for village character names near you!


8 Responses to “Character Names”

  1. Erik Gustafson 7 May 2012 at 17:16 #

    That’s a clever idea for coming up with names!

  2. Debs (@debs_a_roo) 7 May 2012 at 19:04 #

    We need to keep a list of these names – I’ve always imagined it as a sort of good life / the archers style drama – but you’ll do a better job than me

  3. Rhoda Baxter 8 May 2012 at 08:37 #

    I do that too. A lot of them sound quite aristocratic and would work well in historical settings. One of the secondary characters in my book was originally called Ashby Coalville (Junc 22 off the M1).
    An roadmap is best place to find surnames.

    • Mr S 8 May 2012 at 09:30 #

      I seem to picture them as the kind of men that wear cravats on a day to day basis. Ashby Coalville is a great one. I’m still trying to work in Garboldisham somewhere…

  4. Terry Tyler 8 May 2012 at 13:02 #

    I lived in Norfolk for 9 years, and am well acquainted with Happisburgh, etc! How about the ghastly upper class twit Ashby St Ledger (Northants)? Or two brothers called the Husbands Bosworth (Leics)….. Bill Bryson’s done an article about this sort of thing, which you’d like. Near where I live is a village called Pity Me. (Tyne & Wear)

  5. Baz Allin 9 May 2012 at 17:03 #

    Mid Devon has Zeal Monachorum, Black Dog and best of all, Woolfardisworthy – pronounced “Woolsery”

    • Mr S 9 May 2012 at 17:23 #

      Wow, Zeal Monachorum sounds like a mysterious ancient order of some kind.

      I’ve also just remember Broadwoodwidger. This is a game that could go on and on, I love it! :-)

      • Rhoda Baxter 10 May 2012 at 07:31 #

        “Woolfardisworthy” pronounced “Woolsery” – a bit like “Fotheringay-Phipps” pronounced Fungi-phipps then…
        Wyre Piddle (Gloucs?)
        The brothers Wilbur and Fang Foss. (‘Fang’ being a nickname, of course).
        I wonder if there’s a place called ‘Sin’, where people could live in Sin.

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