ASHFORD IN THE WATER

Grid Ref: SK 195 697
Dates 14 June 2014, 24 May 2017 & 14 June 2017

 

Bridge
The Packhorse Bridge over the Wye
Church
The church of Holy Trinity

 

Ashford in the Water in Derbyshire lies on the River Wye which has run down from Monsal Dale.  The village was mentioned in Domesday Book in 1086 as Aisseford when it was said to be a site for the refining of lead.  It is noted for its scenic bridge and annual well dressing. Arthur Mee, writing in 1937, reported that old customs lingered such as ringing the curfew bell every day and the Pancake Bell every Shrove Tuesday.

Like many picturesque villages it is now has second homes and holiday lets. To accomodate tourists it has several catering establishments.  Wikipedia tells us that it is famous for the quarrying of black marble.  An old custom here was to make maiden's garlands, out of paper, to mark the deaths of virgins until 1801, some of which are preserved in the church.  One is for Ann Swindel, who was 22 when buried in 1798.  Such garlands were also made in nearby Matlock.

The Parish Church of Holy Trinity was largely rebuilt between 1868 and 1870 by the architects J. M. and H. Taylor.  Part of the tower dates from the 13th century and the north arcade is from the 14th century.  There is the stump of a cross in the churchyard which has been dated to the 14th or 15th centuries.  Over the south door is a Norman tympanum with the tree of life, a lion and a hog.  The yew tree, seen on the right of my picture must be several centuries old from its great height. Arthur Mee also tells us that the pulpit is Jacobean and there is are 17th century chairs and chests. The font dates from the 14th century.  There are stained glass windows by Burne-Jones (St. John & St. Gregory) and by William Morris (theAnunciation).

Arthur Mee tells us that the village has lost the great house near the church which was  once the  home of the Plantagenets, the  Hollands and the Nevilles. The Cavendish family, from which the Dukes of Devonshire descend, aquired  the area from the Nevilles in the 16th century and sold it in the 1950s to pay death duties.

Many of the stone buildings in the village date from the late 18th and early 19th century with a 17th century tithe barn. Ashford Hall could not be easily photographed from the street as it was on the shady side but it dates from 1785.

 

Well Dressing and Church Flower Festival in 2017

well dressing spacer well dressing
Jane Austen bicentennary   The Hobbit
flower display   flower display
Flower display representing Stoke-on-Trent   Flower display representing Nottingham

 

Well Dressing in 2014

Well dressing spacer well dressing
Shakespeare Anniversay   War Memorial
well dressing   well dressing
Jemima Puddleduck   RSPB

 

Memoria
Centenary of the start of the Great War
 Sources

Wikipedia article

The Buildings of England, Derbyshire, by Nikolaus Pevsner, revised by Elizabeth Williamson, Yale University Press, 2002, ISBN 0-300-09591-0
The King's England, Derbyshire, by Arthur Mee, first published in 1937, 6th impression 1951

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