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Ashbourne in General
Member Name: Dan27
Ashbourne in General
Date: 22/11/01, updated on 22/11/01 (165 review reads)
Advantages: Historic, Cheap, Traditional
Disadvantages: Gets busy in summer
Ashbourne is a historic market town in Derbyshire, at the foot of the Peak District.
Ashbourne has many events taking place throughout the year in the summer there is the Ashbourne Carnival an Arts festival and the Highland gathering. At the carnival it is held in the large recreation ground and there are fun and games for all the family. The Highland Gathering is also held in the recreation ground and each year there are tournaments there for caber tossing and Scottish bands. The Arts festival is held over the whole town in the space of about a weekend there is all sorts of art at different places and times, like music in the pubs and painting displays.
The only events in Winter and Autumn are the half-marathon and fun-run which happen in September. And in December (Friday 14th this year) there is late night Christmas shopping, where all the shops open and there are stalls and games in the town centre.
Then we come to Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday, when the towns big event happens; Royal Shrovetide football. 'Warning if you are tourists and are not coming for the football do not come over these two days'. It was canceled this year due to foot and mouth and Prince Charles was throwing the ballup, but he is still expected to start the game next year. Shrovetide is a huge game held across 3 miles with a goal at each end. The middle of the pitch is the town centre were the ball is thrown up from a plinth. The teams are the up'ards and the down'ards, depending on which side of Henmore Brook you were born on. The ball is thrown into the crowd at about 2:00 and if a goal is scored before 5:00 another ball is thrown up. It is then repeatd the next day. Ashbourne is totally closed for the game, and windows are boarded up and pretty much everyone who is local, male and between the age of 13 - 45 plays the game, trying to get the ball to their goal. The ball is about 75% bigger than a football made of cork and covered in painted leather
. The goalscorer gets to keep a replica painted souvenir ball. Usually the match wind up in the river and everyone gets very wet as this is the easiest way to get to the goals. If you don't feel like coming to see or play it is always on the local news.
Ashbourne is very historical with an old Victorian market square, where markets are held every Thursday and Saturday. There are also quite a few Georgian and Victorian buildings around the town and even the school looks like some sort of historical castle.
Shopping wise the major big name shops are Sainsburys (for some reason there are 4 supermarkets!), Boots, Edinburgh Woollen Mill and WH Smith. If you want antiques this is the place to come just head down Church Street (in the direction of the church).
In summer there are many tourists so book early. They come fr the history, countryside, views and walks. Ashbourne is one end of the Tissington trail, which is a long wide path ideal for walikng and mountainbiking.
If you do want to visit there are many B & Bs to chhose from, hope you enjoy yourself.