One of Carnforth's Oldest HousesMiddle Centuries Carnforth

Carnforth's name is Anglo Saxon for, 'Court by the Harbour', the harbour certainly existed in Anglo Saxon times as it had done in Roman Times . What is less clear is what the court was, a legal court? or prehaps even a royal court? In the event Carnforth had appeared on its present location by Anglo Saxon times.The Anglo Saxon village was built along north road, likely consisting of several houses and a hall. The fact of the harbour being nearby could have made Carnforth an important centre for trade hence the 'court?' Carnforth is mentioned in the Doomsday book of 1086 as Chereforde. The Norman age also had an effect on Carnforth's status in North Lancashire, with Carnforth becoming a minor village at a road junction.


Shovel Inn Carnforth's Oldest Serviving InnLater Centuries

It was the road that was to guarantee Carnforth's survival. The original road still exists in Carnforth, starting at Lancaster Road on the A6, the road followed the A6 northward until the junction with north road. As this name suggests this road was the main road north, it going north, slightly east following the modern road through what was the centre of Carnforth by today's Shovel Inn then passing through the Anglo Saxon Village before descending Carnforth Brow and into the countryside. Apart from the Shovel Inn Carnforth had at least two other Inns the Golden Ball which stood next door to the Shovel, and the Carnforth inn which is near to the modern day traffic lights but rebuilt later. The village would have had several other businesses either connected with agriculture or peat digging as well as normal village amenities.