Covington History

Places around the world that share the Covington name




A small town and parish (with Thankerton) in the Upperward of the county of Lanarkshire, 4 miles West by North from Biggar, 33.5 miles South West of Edinburgh, 7 miles South East of Lanark, 36 miles South East of Glasgow. It has a population of 518

A habitation name from Covinton was first recorded in the late 12th Century in the Latin form Villa Colbani, "Colban's or Cowan's village", and 20 years later as Colbaynistun. The proprietor was a follower of David, Prince of Cumbria circa 1120. By 1434 the name had been collapsed to Cowantoun, and at the end of the 15th Century, it first appears in the form Covingtoun. It is, nevertheless clearly named with the personal name Colban, possibly derived to Coleman and the Old English "tun", enclosure or settlement.

There could be association with Cobbinshaw or Cobinshaw (18 miles South West of Edinburgh) and Colinton (a village, now part of South West Edinburgh), both of which are in Midlothian.


Covington has a castle ruin, situated 1 mile North East of Thankerton. The parish is of approx 5110 acres of which 2000 are arable, 80 acres woodland and plantation and the remainder being sheep pasture. The cattle are mainly of Angus breed and sheep are of the black faced kind.

The parish of Covington and Thankerton is about 4 miles in length South to North and nearly 3 miles in average breadth. It is bounded to the East by the River Clyde, which separates it from the parish of Libberton. The ecclesiastical affairs of the parish are under the superintendence of the presbytery of Biggar and synod of Lothian and Tweedale. The church in Thankerton has been suffered to fall into ruins and that of Covington has been enlarged for the population of the whole parish, The parochial school is in the village of Covington, and in 1960 the master had a salary of 28, with a house and garden and the fees averaged about 16 per annum.

Of these ancient parishes, which were joined about the beginning of the 18th century, Covington derived its name as shown above. Thankerton got it's name from a Flemish settler Tankard or Thankard, who obtained a grant of lands here during the reign of Malcolm IV

(Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Scotland 1960)(Gazetteer of the British Isles - Bartholemew 9th Edition)(Ordance Survey Sheet Number 72, map ref 39/97)(Scottish Place Names - Their Meaning Explained - A.M.Eyers)(Gazetteer of Scotland)(A Dictionary of Surnames - Patrick Hanks & Flavia Hodges)

Covington, a hamlet and a parish in the Upper Ward of Lanarkshire. The hamlet stands between the Clyde and the Caledonian railway, 1 mile N by E of its station and post-town Thankerton,, this being 33 miles SW of Edinburgh and 36 SE of Glasgow; at it is the parish church (230 sittings), an old building enlarged in the early part of last century. A neighbouring tower, built in 1442 by Lindsay of Covington barony, is now a fine ruin; and Covington Mill was the place where that famous martyr of the Covenant, Donald Cargill, was seized by Irving of Bonshaw in May 1681


For more info on the history of Covington & Thankerton please follow the link


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Copyright Martin H Covington 1956, updated 30 Aug 2000