The Norman conquest saw the birth of what we now know as Milnrow today.The de Butterworths, de Turnaghs, de Schofields, de Birchinleghs, de Wylds and Cleggs controlled the lands which formed the township of Butterworth. Milnrow as a separate community seems to have evolved from that ancient township. As to the place name, most people think the name came from the Milne family, a family owning a row of houses.

The name most probably originated from the existance of a water driven corn mill which is mentioned in the deed of 1568 as being held by Edwin Butterworth on the River Beal, the site bearing the name "Mill Hill". Muller, the old form of spelling of the occupation name Miller, gradually became Milner, Milne and then Miln. Howe, meaning hill, provides the suffix, hence Milnhowe; when pronounced quickly becomes Milnrow, or simply Mill Hill as in the deed of 1568. 

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