Grisleymires Lane - Background Milnthorpe

Grisleymires Lane

Grisleymires Lane in Milnthorpe sounds like the location for a horror film, but the name probably means something like ‘the muddy hollow of the pigs’

The placque in the photo, above, records that until c.1920 the piggeries belonging to the Royal Oak Inn were situated near here - but the name is a lot older than that.  Originally the lane led onto Milnthorpe Marsh 

The name seems to be first recorded as Grislake in 1574 (The Place-Names of Westmorland, Cambridge University Press,1967, Part 1, p.95-6). The first element is griss, the Old Norse word for a pig (Middle English grise) – the same word as in Grisedale. The second bit is probably slakki, another Sandinavian word maning a hollow, or a shallow valley. The final element is myrr, the Old Norse word for a bog or swampy ground. All three of these words passed into the Cumbrian dialect, so the name may not go all the way back to the Vikings - but it almost certainly goes back to the medieval period.


Text and photo by Bill Shannon