The River Roch is a river in Greater Manchester in North West England, a tributary of the River Irwell, that gives Rochdale its name.


Rising on Chelburn Moor (south of Todmorden in the Pennines), the river flows south through Littleborough towards Rochdale where it is joined by the River Beal at Belfield, and the River Spodden from Whitworth. Turning west it runs past Heywood and Bury before meeting the River Irwell just to the east of Radcliffe.


The Domesday Book records the name of Rochdale as ''Recedham'', formed from Old English ''reced'' "hall", and ''ham'' "homestead". The name of the river is a back-formation from this Old English name. With time, the town's name changed to ''Rachedale'' and eventually ''Rochdale''. The name of the river Roch is , with a long ''o.'' The name of the town, however, is pronounced , with a short ''o.'' The river has been culverted in Rochdale town centre since the early 20th century. This was built by the joining together of seven bridges to form one large bridge, making it one of the widest bridges in the world. Maintenance work was carried out on the bridge in the 1990s and the river was uncovered temporarily. In 2015 work began on opening the bridge again in a multimillion-pound project. On Boxing Day 2015, following heavy rain, the Roch burst its banks causing flooding in the town centre.


Moving upstream from the Irwell confluence, the tributaries include the following: *Parr Brook *Hollins Brook *Gigg Brook *Barn Brook **Green Brook **Gipsy Brook *Tack Lee Brook *Wrigley Brook *Naden Brook *Plumpton Wood Brook *Millers Brook *Primrose Hill Brook *Sudden Brook *River Spodden *Moss Brook *Hey Brook *Stanney Brook *River Beal *Ash Brook *Clegg Hall Brook *Wuerdle Brook *Stubley Brook *Featherstall Brook *Ealees Brook *Town House Brook *Greenvale Brook *Chelburn Brook


File:Source of the Roch 1.JPG|The source on Chelburn Moor File:Roch Aqueduct.jpg|Aqueduct across the Caldervale Railway File:Looking downsteam from Smallbridge.jpg|Looking downstream from Smallbridge File:Beal and Roch Confluence.JPG|Confluence of River Beal File:River Roch after heavy rain 2.jpg|Flowing under one of the world's widest bridges File:River Roch Town Centre.JPG|Rochdale town centre section uncovered during bridge works in the 1990s File:Spodden Roch Confluence 3.jpg|Confluence of River Spodden File:River Roch Bottom o th brow.JPG|Upstream from Bottom o' th' Brow, Heywood File:Roch_Irwell_confluence_Keith_Williamson.jpg|Confluence with River Irwell


{{DEFAULTSORT:Roch Category:Rivers of Greater Manchester Category:Rivers of the Metropolitan Borough of Rochdale Category:Rivers of the Metropolitan Borough of Bury 1Roch Category:Roch catchment