First surname of Christmas found in Ipswich in 1191

Harry Brightwell launches BCTGA competition.

Harry Brightwell launches BCTGA competition. - Credit: KB Photography

The earliest recordings of the surname Christmas were in Ipswich in 1191, research has found.

BCTGA map and table of Christmassy surnames.

BCTGA map and table of Christmassy surnames. - Credit: BCTGA

The study, carried out by the British Christmas Tree Growers Association (BCTGA), also revealed that the first time Angel can be found listed as a surname in the UK was in 1951 in Hadleigh.

People called Christmas now tend to live in Cambridgeshire, while Rudolphs can be found in Kent, Santas in Scotland and the three wise men, Balthazar, Melchior and Caspar, in Bedfordshire.

The BCTGA has launched a nationwide search for the person with the most Christmassy name.

Favourites will be shortlisted in September and the public asked to choose a winner from a final five. BCTGA secretary Harry Brightwell, of Tuddenham, said: “If you know a Mary Christmas, Miss L Toe, Robin Redbreast, Gabriel Angel or Frank Incense, we want to hear from you.”