This is a rare and unusual English surname. Recorded as Winchurch as well as apparently Wincehurst and Winchurst, it is clearly locational and from some place. However according to the gazetters of the British Isles for the past three centuries, no such place in anything like the surname spelling has or does exist. This suggests that the place name is either one of the five thousand villages and hamlets which have disappeared from the maps since medieval times, or that the place name or surname spelling has changed out of recognition. All are possible, the 'lost' village being the most likely scenario. What we do know is that as Winchurch the surname has been recorded in the city of London since at least the year 1610. On April 10th of that year Catharine Winchurch married Edward Carene at the church of St Gregory's by St Pauls Cathedral, whilst.as Wincehurst and Winchurst the name is first recorded in 1636 with that of Jeffrey Wincehurst on November 23rd. A Jeffrey Winchurst, who may be the same person, is also recorded on Janary 27th 1649, at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney. There are several suggestions for the origin and meaning. These include 'windy wood' from the pre 7th century Olde English 'win-hyrst' or 'The white church', that is to say a church probably built of limestone from 'winn cherche', and just possibly Windy Church or even 'winch wood', a place where a winch was used for moving trees.
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