A fine old market town, with good shopping, especially for antiques. An ideal base for visiting the Peak District or Alton Towers.
Described as "The Gateway to Dovedale", Ashbourne has much more to offer.
Ashbourne became a busy and fashionable social centre for the wealthy during the Georgian period, with six coaching roads meeting at the town, including the route from London to Carlisle. A stroll down the main street today takes you past historic almshouses, the 16th century Old Grammar School, the Mansion where Dr Johnson visited his friend Dr Taylor and the lovely parish church of St Oswald, with its graceful 212ft spire and the oldest dedication plaque of its kind in Britain, dating back to 1241. Ashbourne's legacy of more than 200 listed buildings, fine coaching inns and mellow-bricked town houses combine to create the town's unique atmosphere.
The medieval annual Royal Shrovetide Football Game attracts thousands of visitors as does the Highland Gathering held in July. A wide selection of eating and drinking establishments in the town cater for the discerning visitors every taste.
Things to do; In addition to good shopping, there are excellent recreational facilities in the town parks with a good leisure centre, swimming pool, squash courts and gymnasium. Near the town centre is the Tissington Trail, a former railway line, now converted for use as a trail for walkers and cyclists. Bike hire is available from the Visitor centre at Mappleton Lane. Market Day is on Thursday.
Other attractions nearby include Carsington Water – a reservoir with water sports centre surrounded by numerous trails set amidst spectacular scenery.