There are almost no written sources mentioning Lancashire or Manchester before William the Conqueror’s Domesday survey of 1086.

The Norman’s didn’t immediately arrive in Lancashire after their invasion of  1066, only venturing north in 1069, in the rather misnamed ‘Harrying of the North’, they waste Yorkshire and much of the North East and probably some parts of Lancashire and Cheshire too after the rebellion of the Northern Earls.

The events cast a dark shadow over William’s early reign, York was completely destroyed during the campaign and even the Norman’s were disturbed with one monk complaining it amounted to “wholesale massacre” with William destroying “both the bad and the good in one common ruin.”

The whole of the region between the Ribble and the Mersey was put under the control of Roger De Montgomery a cousin of William the Conqueror, who fought alongside him at the Battle of Hastings.

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