The History of Sandbach

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Known as Sanbec in 1086, Sondbache (also Sondebache) in 1260, and Sandbitch in the 17th–18th centuries,[Sandbach derives its name from the Anglo-Saxon sand bæce, which can mean "sand stream" or "sand valley".[The modern German word Bach, with a similar origin as bæce, means "brook"; thus, the meaning of Sandbach can be understood correctly in German – an identical German placename exists.

Traces of settlement are found in Sandbach from Saxon times, when the town was called Sanbec. Little is known about the town during this period, except that it was subjected to frequent Welsh and Danish raids.The town's inhabitants were converted to Christianity in the 7th century by four priests: Cedda, Adda, Betti and Diuma.The town has an entry in the Domesday Book from 1086, at which time it was sufficiently large to need a priest and a church.The entry states:

Sanbec: Bigot de Loges. 1 hide and 1½ virgates pay tax. Land for 2 ploughs. 1 Frenchman has ½ plough, 3 slaves. 2 villagers have ½ plough. Church. Woodland. Value TRE 4s; now 8s.

By the 13th century, during the reign of King John, much of the land around the township of Sandbach was owned by Richard de Sandbach who was the High Sheriff of Cheshire in 1230.Richard de Sandbach specifically owned a manor; he claimed an interest in the living of Sandbach. This claim against Earl Randle de Blundeville was unsuccessful. His son, John, however, was slightly more successful as he won an 'interest' temporarily against the Abbot of Dieulacres, only for it to be lost when it went to the King's Bench.

Sandbach Town Crier at Sandbach Transport Festival

The manor in Sandbach passed through numerous families, including the Leghs and Radclyffes. It was eventually bought by Sir Randulph (or Randle) Crewe, who became the Lord of the Manor.

Sandbach has been a market town since 1579, when it was granted a Royal Charter by Elizabeth I due to the petitioning of Sir John Radclyffe of Ordsall who, as the largest landowner in Sandbach and the owner of the Sandbach Old Hall, encouraged the farmers of the area to hold a market in the town on Thursdays.The charter also allowed for right to establish a Court-leet and a Court of Pied-powder.The original charter is still preserved, and can be found in Chester; a reproduction can be found in the Sandbach Town Council chamber, which is at the Literary Institution. The charter also granted the town the right to hold two annual fairs, which lasted for two days, and were held around Easter and early September. The Thursday market is still held outdoors on Scotch Common, and in and around the town hall.

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