Recorded in several spelling forms including Hawkridge, Hawkeridge, and Hockridge, this is an English surname. It derives from the village name of Hawkridge, from various places so called in the counties of Kent, Devon, Somerset and Berkshire. The origination of the Kent village name is the Old English pre 7th Century word "hoc", meaning a hook or bend or perhaps a spur of a hill, with "hrycg", meaning a ridge. The other places all have the ancient "hafoc", meaning hawk as the first element, with "hrycg" as above. The earliest recording of this placename is in Berkshire in the chronicles of the Monastery of Abington for the year 956 a.d. where it appears as "Heafochrycg", and later in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Somerset in 1194 as "Hauekerega". Early examples of the surname recording include: the christening of John Hockridge on November 27th 1597 at Woodbury, Devon, and Thomas Hawkridge, the son of John Hawkridge, christened at All Hallows church, Staines, Middlesex, on March 20th 1643. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Stephen de Hokeregge. This was dated 1275, in the Hundred Rolls of Kent, during the reign of King Edward 1st of England, 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.