This interesting surname is of English locational origin from one of the many places thus called e.g. Cheshire, Derbyshire, Hampshire, Staffordshire, Sussex, Warwickshire, etc.. Brockhurst in Warwickshire was recorded as "Brochurst" in the 1200 Curia Regis Rolls. The component elements of the placename are the Old English pre 7th Century "brocc" meaning badger plus "hyrst" a hill or a wood; hence "badger hill or wood". The surname is first recorded in the early 13th Century (see below). One, William de Brokhurst, is noted in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex (1296) and Thomas Brokhurst, appears in the Assize Court Rolls of Warwickshire (1381). In the modern idiom the surname is also found with variant spelling Brockherst. Recordings of the surname from the London church registers include; Marget, daughter of William Brockhurst, who was christened on July 11th 1574, at St. Gabriel Fenchurch; the marriage of William Brockhurst and Embry Spencer took place on November 5th 1597, at St. Bride Fleet Street, and on July 4th 1602, Joyce, daughter of John Brockhurst, was christened at St. James Clerkenwell. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard de Brocherst, which was dated 1201, in the "Pleas before the King or his Justices", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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