The Domesday Book was commissioned in December 1085 by William the Conqueror, who invaded England in 1066. The first draft was completed in August 1086 and contained records for 13,418 settlements in the English counties south of the rivers Ribble and Tees.
Manchester is given but a single line in the Domesday book, prior to the Norman invasion it had formed part of the Royal Manor of Salford along with the other five hundreds
‘King Edward held Salford.There are three hides and twelve carucates of wasteland. There is a forest three leagues long and the same broad. There are many hays and a Hawks Aery there.King Edward held Radclive for the manor.
There is one hide and another hide there belongs to Salford.
The church of St Mary and the church of St Michael held in Mamacestre, one carucate of land free from all customs but the gelt. To this manor or hundred belong twenty one berewicks which so many thanks held for so many manors. In which there were eleven and shall hides and ten and a half carucates of land.
The woods there are nine leagues and half long and five leagues and a furlong broad.
Gamel, a tenant of two of these hides in Recedham, was free of all customs but these six, theft, heinfare, forestel, breach of the peace, not keeping the term set him by the reeve and continuing a fight after an oath given to the contrary. The fine for these was eleven shillings.
Some of these lands were free from every custom but the gelt and some were free even from the gelt.
The whole manor of Salford with the hundred rendered thirty seven pounds and four shillings.
Of this manor there are now in the demense two caracutes, eight serfs and two villeins with one caracute.
The demense is worth one hundred shillings.
Of the lands of this manor, these knights hold by the gift of Roger de Poictou, Nigel three hides and half a caracute of land, Warin, two caracutes of land, another Warin one caracute and a half, Goisfrid, one caracute and Gamel two caracutes of land.
In these are three thanes and thirty villeins, nine bordars and a priest and ten serfs.
They have twenty two caracutes between them and the whole is worth seven pounds.’
Later in the Domesday Book there is another section that refers to the region.
The men of this manor (Leyland) and Salford were not bound by the custom to work at the Kings Hall or to mow for him in August. They only made hay in the wood and they have the forfeitures for bloodshed and rape. In the other customs of the other manors above mentioned they bore their part