Of the three possible sources of this interesting name, the most likely origin being a metonymic occupatioonal reference to someone who kept a corner shop. It could also be a topographical name for someone who lived on a corner of land in the countryside or on a street corner in the town as the Middle High German word "Winkel" means corner. Alternatively it is possibly a habitational name for one who has lived in Wincl, near Macclesfield, Cheshire, spelt Winchul c. 1200. There is always a possibility however, that it was a nickname i.e "the winkle" or "periwinkle", although the least likely. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John le Wenchel. which was dated 1273, Hundred Rolls of Buckinghamshire. during the reign of King Edward I, 1272 - 1307, the Hammer of the Scots. 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.