Derives its name either from Cran Brook, a tributary of the Roding river which once supplied Barking Abbey with water, or from a local landowning family which in turn took its name from the stream. The name first appears in 1233 as Cranebroc, meaning the stream inhabited by cranes (a bird similar to a heron, hunted to extinction in Tudor times). It was used to describe an area of land north of Ilford village – later, the Cranbrook estate – from at least 1284, when Geoffrey, son of Simon of Cranbrook, sold land in Barking, to John, son of Geoffrey of Cranbrook, and his wife, Agnes. A manor – on the site now occupied by De Vere Gardens and adjacent roads, is known here from at least 1456 when Geoffrey’s lands passed to John Malmayne, the “tenant of the manor of Malmaynes” (though it is thought the family may have held the land since at least 1347). In 1540 the estate was referred to as Malmaynes of Cranbrook. By the early 19thCentury it comprised of some 179 acres, incorporating about 60 acres west of Cranbrook Road, and parts of the former Wyfields estate. In 1897 Cranbrook was sold to William Peter Griggs, a builder from Bethnal Green, who divided it up to make way for streets and housing. The last tenant, AS Walford moved out in 1899, and by 1901 the Manor House had been demolished though is remembered in the name of the street.
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