Origins of the Surname of Hope - Section 5

5.  English Hope Families.

Compared to Scotland the origin of the English surname of Hope is exceedingly complex but like Scotland there are similar possible derivations including the association with hope a topographical feature - several were listed on the Origins page.   However the absorption of the name of hope, in England, into the local nomenclature is patchy.   To progress Hope family research does need someone with a particular interest in a Hope family from anywhere in England to carry out a detailed research including some interesting DNA work particularly in Derbyshire and Cumbria where there is possibly Nordic DNA.    A complete research of the English Hope Families is well beyond this website but I have selected some material for the counties mainly of Derbyshire, Lancashire/Cheshire, Northumbria/Durham, Cumbria,  but also from Yorkshire, Somerset (where Bob Hope's ancestors came from) and also from the South East.  Hopefully this will trigger further interest.

a) Derbyshire

As mentioned previously the appearance of the name Hope in England predates its arrival in Scotland.   It may also here have one of its possible origins in the names of topographical features where hope is part of the word ie similar to the Scottish Borders names but in England/Wales Hope also appears in it own right. In England these names can be traced back to the Doomsday Survey of 1087, principally in Derbyshire, Shropshire and Cheshire/Wales.   In Derbyshire - Hope, Hopton, Hopwell and Glossop.   In Nottinghamshire - Worksop.   In Shropshire - Easthope,  Edenhope, Hope Bendrid, Hope Bowdler, Hopesay, Hopton, Hopton Castle, Hopton Wafers, Middlehope, Millichope, and Ratlinghope. Cheshire/Wales - Hopton, Hope, Hope Hall and Hope Mountain.    The Hope in Derbyshire in fact predates the Doomsday Survey as it is recorded in a charter of 926 AD    The translation from Latin of the charter reads - A.D. 926.   King Athelstan to Uhtred; confirmation of 60 hides (manentes) at Hope and Ashford, Derbys, formerly purchased from the Danes for 20 pounds of gold and silver.  Derbyshire  at this time was under Danelaw and King Athelstan (of Mercia) was starting the process of recovering lands from the Danes.   Athelstan was succesful in easing out the Danes and is known as the first King of England.   As Hope was under Danelaw where Danish language and law was used - see map of 878 AD below - the Danes possibly gave this Hope it's name - ie this Hope is possibly of Danish origin!    There is more on this possible Nordic connection on the England section of the Hope Heraldry page.


This mention of Hope is the earliest recorded anywhere and it could be very important in our quest for the origins of the surname.   The town of Hope still exists and it is still spelt the same as it was in 926.  In the  same area the town of Hopton still exists as does a Hassop.  It should be noted that the Doomsday Survey did not cover any areas north of Derbyshire because of low population density- less than 2 persons per square mile.

Unfortunately any solid connection between the above examples in the Doomsday Survey and the surname of Hope is proving difficult apart from Hopewell (Hopwell) which survives as an English surname and possibly also Hopton, see below.

A line of inquiry is the subject of mining particularly lead mining from Roman times or even earlier.   If this suggestion proves correct you saw it here first.  See map of roman mines in England and images below. 


The above map shows mines at Matlock in Derbyshire and many in the Shropshire/North Wales area corresponding with some locations that included Hope in their name in the Doomsday Book. 



 Image above shows the remnants of the Roman lead/silver mine at Charterhouse in the Mendip Hills in Somerset showing how extensive the workings were.



Image above shows the remnants of lead mines at Hopton in Derbyshire.   Hopton is mentioned in the Doomsday Survey in connection with the Manor at Wicksworth and its lead mines.

When the Romans left the UK c400 AD many of the mines were abandoned and by the time of the Middle Ages only a few were left in operation and those were in Derbyshire.  In 1066 it is recorded that the people of Bakewell, Ashford and Hope had rendered money, honey and five cartloads of lead.   In  the Doomsday Survey it is recorded that the Manor of Wirksworth in Derbyshire had three lead mines and that one of the outliers of the Manor was Hopton.

The abondoned mines would leave large scars on the landscape - huge holes in the ground, large spoil heaps  and foundry areas where the lead would be recovered and poured into ingots.   These sites would be classed as waste land ie unsuitable for agriculture.    Importantly, the Oxford English Dictionary, as mentioned on the Hope Origins page, gives waste land as one of the definitions of a hope.  

This connection between the surname Hope and lead mines would appear tenuous however the fact that there were leadmines at Hopton in Somerset , Hopton in Derbyshire and also Hopetoun in Scotland would suggest that further research is indicated.  See also the lead mine connection in Scotland on 3- Edinburgh Hopes page.

One of the best known families associated with the the town of Hope and the Hope Valley is that of the family of Eyre.  They were around from earliest times and in the twelfth/thirteenth centuries one branch styled themselves Eyres of Hope - Eyre Hope.  An early Eyre was Sir William Eyre (1223-1299) who was married to Lady Mariota Hope who was born in Hope in 1220.     This  could be one of the earliest recorded examples of the surname of Hope.

There was a Hope family at Grangefield, Tursley, Derbyshire headed by a Robert Hope b c1644,described as a Gentleman, married to a Mary.   See his heraldry on Hope Heraldry page.  Robert Hope and Mary had a daughter also named Mary Hope, christened 05-07-1682 in Trusley, that married Robert Docksey 04-09-1711 in Trusley and Sutton on the Hill in Derbyshire.

b)  Lancashire/Cheshire.

A Henry Hope of Salford is recorded as holding land there in 1346 and that he was associated with a manor at Swinton on the Yorkshire border - this is a fairly early recording of the name - can anybody add to this?

Henry Hope a brother of Sir Thomas Hope of Craighall (1573-1646)  settled in Lancashire - See  family Tree on page 3. Edinburgh Hopes .   One of these  descendants of Henry Hope was another Henry Hope who married a daughter of James Wilde (d1819) of Manchester.   A son of Henry was Thomas Hope (1753-1838) of Presbury Hall, Macclesfield who married Anne Jackson and had twelve children.  One of the twelve was James Hope MD (1801-1841) born in Stockport, Cheshire and died and buried in Highgate London - he has an entry in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography where he is a physician and cardiologist.  His biography by his wife Ann Fulton indicates that James thought that his family were descended from the Craighalls - in fact the biography has the Craighall motto of At Spes Infracta on the frontispiece.  James and Anne Fulton had one son Sir Theodore Cracroft Hope (1832-1915).   Theodore married Josephine Mary McGildowny Hope and latterly lived at Hope Farm in Lancashire.   He was in the Indian Civil Service and was honoured with a C.I.E. - Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire and also the K.C.S.I. - Knight Commander of the Star of India. The descent of this family from Sir Thomas Hope of Craighall of Edinburgh is verified in Burkes Landed Gentry of GB - Kingdom of Scotland, 19th Ed.

There is a second eminent family of Hope headed by John Hope of Astley in Lancashire.   He died in 1601 and had a grandson John Hope (1626-1674) of Hopefold, Astley Green in Lancashire.  His descendants included a Samuel Hope (1709-1781) whose descendants emigrated to Mexico, USA, P.E.I. Canada and Australia and were merchants/bankers in Liverpool and archiects/builders in Manchester. They are remembered particularly in Liverpool by the name of Hope Street that includes the Hope & Anchor pub, and also Hope Park where can be found the Liverpool Hope University.  It is certain that the Hopes were a very wealthy and powerful family in the area.   One of the most eminent was Peter Hope (1747-c1820) who had property in Monongalia - in present West Virginia, Norfolk in Virginia and also in Kentucky.  Associated with the latter is the estate of Warrington which must have been named after the the town of Warrington in Lancashire near Liverpool.  A son of Peter was Horatio Nelson Hope (1802-1867).  Horatio and his family appear on several family trees on line.  There are also parts of the Hope/Liverpool family on trees in the Public Members Trees section of    A nephew of the above Peter was Samuel Hope of Everton (1781-1837) whos daughter was Rebekah Maria Hope (1818-1888).  Rebekah Maria Hope married Samuel Morley and they are the progenitors of the family of Hope-Morley - Baron Hollenden of Hall Place, Leigh, Tonbridge, Kent. 

If you believe that your ancestors came from Lancashire and you are male and have the surname of Hope I suggest a visit to the Clan Hope website based in the USA - and perhaps consider A DNA test.   You never know, you could be related to the Hope chiefly line!

c) Cumbria.

Cumbria is a hot spot for the surname of Hope as indicated by the Surname profiling map on the Hope origins page.   Recent research - January 2012 - indicates that the Hopes of the Scottish Borders are probably descended from Angles in Northumbria.   So did the descendants of the Cumbrian Hopes also originate from there or perhaps they came from further south in England?  Or are they of Nordic origin either direct or via Ireland, Isle of Man, or even The Hebrides the Norse strongholds?   A lot of very interesting DNA work required here!    One Hope associated name is Kershope to be found on the northern border with Scotland - various spellings are Kirsoppe, Kirsop etc.

The map below shows how the Norse arrived and the connections with south-west Scotland.




d). Northumbria and Durham.  

Hope families of this area, certainly from the area around and north of the River Tyne will be descended from Angles similar to the Scottish Border Hopes.   See page 2.1. Scottish Border Hopes prior to 1296 AD.  Names in this area include Blenkinsope, Kershope, Stanhope, Wannop, Trollope etc.  Another interesting name is Westerhope now a western suberb of Newcastle on Tyne.   The name of Westerhope would be quite at home in the Scottish Borders.

In a book titled Northumberland Words published in 1893 included the following:- Hope.. the inch ordnance map of Northumberland gives seventy-three place names having this termination.   In the county of Durham forty such occur.

(Note from Ed - a gentleman with initials HH sent me an email on Tuesday 27th November 2012 concerning Hope families in Northumbria.   However the return email address given proved to be invalid.   If he would like to get in touch again I will be happy to respond to his queries.)

e)  Yorkshire.

A family of Hopes headed by a George Hope (b1838) were bricklayers in the Wakefield area of Yorkshire. An interesting descendant of this family is the Rev. David Hope, lately Archbishop of York and now Lord Hope of Thornes, Wakefield, West Yorkshire.

f)  Somerset and the South West of England.

Following on from the image of Roman lead mines at Charterhouse in the Mendip Hills shown above.   Charterhouse is associated with the ancient Priory of Witham. The family of Sir Ralph Hopton a General in the army of King Charles Ist came from Witham. Was his surname derived from the lead mines - the suffix ton (present day town) would be derived from the cluster of worker's dwelling around the mine? This is similar to the Scottish Hopetoun which is the old name for Leadhills. See section 3 Edinburgh Hopes

Although Somerset does not appear as a Hope stronghold on the Surname Profiling Chart on the Hope Origins page there is evidence that there is a cluster of Hopes in the County that in the past included William Hendry Hope, born in Weston super Mare, the father of the American comedian Leslie Townes Hope (Bob Hope).   Bob Hope himself was born in Eltham, London in 1903.  However it is evident that these Hope ancestors were in fact Hopes and changed their name to Hope - there are family trees on the Public members area of showing the Hopes going back to a Stephen Hopes (1675-1706).   A look for Hopes on the Surname Profiling Chart , mentioned above, shows that the heartland for Hopes in 1881 was Bristol (adjacent to Somerset) and in 1998 was Bristol and now also Wales.   

g.   London & South East England.


With the approach of Napoleon's army in 1794, the banking Hope family of Amsterdam fled to England.   They purchased a house in Cavendish Square in London from his Scottish kinsman Lord Hopetoun.   The family purchased other fine properties namely Deepdene in Surrey that became the home of Thomas Hope (1769-1813) an author and a Regency fine furniture designer.  Thomas's brother was Henry Philip Hope 1769-1831 who was a collector of fine gems and owned the Hope diamond and the Hope Pearl.   Thomas married Louis de la Poer Beresford a daughter of Baron Decies the Right Rev William Beresford, Archbishop of Tuam in Ireland.  A lot more about Thomas can be found at the following website -  Thomas and Louisa had three sons, - one Charles died young.  The eldest son was Alexander James Hope (1820-1887) who was politician and author.  When Alexander inherited his step-father's lands he added the name Beresford before his surname of Hope.   Alexander James Beresford Hope is listed in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.   Alexander held honorary degrees from Cambridge, Washington, Tennessee and also Dublin.  The youngest son was Henry Thomas Hope. These Hope families being descended from the Hope family of Amsterdam and hence descended from the chiefly line of Hope of Craighall of Scotland are related to the chiefly line and male descendants with the surname of Hope will carry the chiefly DNA.   Several family trees including this family can be found in the Public Members Trees area of

As noted in b. Lancashire above a Maria Rebekah Hope of Liverpool married Samuel Morley.   They are the progenitors of the family of Hope-Morley, Baron Hollenden, Hall Place, Leigh, Tonbridge, Kent.

Although Leslie Townes Hope (Bob Hope) was born in London his father and his family came from Somerset as noted in Section f above.  It it will also be noted that his family origins were Hopes not Hope.  

On the Hope Origins page it is mentioned that one of the definitions for the topographical feature of a hope was A piece of enclosed land e.g. in the midst of fens or marshes.  This is clearly evidenced in Kent as in Hope All Saints in Romney Marsh also in charter boundaries c995 AD.   There is also a Hope Farm in Hawkinge in Kent.   This area may account for the cluster of the Hope surname in Kent shown on the surname profiling chart on the Hope Origins page.   Map below of 878 AD shows areas of swamp or alluviam including the coastal area of South Kent.




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