Aysgarth shown within North Yorkshire
|Population||178 (2011 census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Shire county||North Yorkshire|
|Region||Yorkshire and the Humber|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Postcode district||DL8 3|
|EU Parliament||Yorkshire and the Humber|
|UK Parliament||Richmond (Yorks) (UK Parliament constituency)|
Aysgarth is a village and civil parish in Wensleydale, in the Richmondshire district of North Yorkshire, England. The village is in the Yorkshire Dales National Park, about 16 miles (26 km) south-west from Richmond and 22.6 miles (36.4 km) west of the County Town of Northallerton.
The village is mentioned in the Domesday Book as Echescard. The topynomy is derived from the combination of the Old Norse words eiki, meaning Oak, and skarð, meaning Open space giving Oak trees in open space.
At the time of the Norman invasion, the manor was held by Cnut, son of Karli. Afterwards the manor was in the possession of Count Alan of Brittany, who granted lordship to Geoffrey of Swaffham. By the 13th century, the manor was in the hands of the Burgh family of Hackforth. The manor descended as per the manor of Hackforth until 1480 at which time they were conveyed to the Crown in the person of Richard, Duke of Gloucester. Some lands in the manor in the 13th century came into the hands of the lords of Middleham and then followed the descent of the manor of Thoralby.
The George and Dragon Inn in Aysgarth dates from the 17th century when it was a coaching inn and is now a Grade II listed building. Local real ale from the Black Sheep Brewery and the Yorkshire Dales Brewing Company is served.
The parish lies within the Richmond UK Parliament constituency. It also lies within the Upper Dales electoral division of North Yorkshire County Council and the Addlebrough ward of Richmondshire District Council.
The village lies along the A684 road near the south bank of the River Ure. The nearest settlements are Carperby to the north, Thoralby to the south-west and West Burton to the south-east, all within 1 mile (1.6 km) of the village. Aysgarth & District Parish Council is bordered by the Parishes of Bainbridge, Askrigg and Low Abbotside, Carperby cum Thoresby, Burton cum Walden and Buckden.
These are a triple flight of waterfalls on the River Ure over a one mile stretch. The falls are fast flowing, especially during wet weather, as thousands of gallons of water cascade over the series of broad limestone steps. Aysgarth Falls is a popular tourist attraction and have been the subject of works by Ruskin, Turner and Wordsworth who all visited the area. The upper fall was featured in the film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.
The 2001 UK census showed that the population was split 48.7% male to 51.3% female. The religious constituency was made of 73.5% Christian, 1.5% Jewish and the rest stating no religion or not stating at all. The ethnic make-up was 98.5% White British and 1.5% White other. There were 100 dwellings.
The 2011 UK census showed that the population was split 48.9% male to 51.1% female. The religious constituency was made of 67.4% Christian, 1.7% Jewish, 0.6% Buddhist and the rest stating no religion or not stating at all. The ethnic make-up was 99.5% White British and 0.5% each White Other . There were 136 dwellings.
Culture and community
There are two public houses in the village. There a few local businesses alongside the tourist gift shops. There is a Youth Hostel near the falls. To the east of the village is a caravan and lodge park.
A regular bus service operates between Bedale and Hawes. On Sundays a year-round DalesBus service operates between Northallerton and Hawes. There are also three DalesBus routes that call at the village in the summer season. A bus service also operates between Darlington College and Askrigg.
St. Andrew's Church in Aysgarth was substantially rebuilt in 1536, and restored in 1866 is now a Grade II* listed building. The unusually large churchyard extends to about four acres. The church preserves a number of fittings that were rescued from Jervaulx Abbey at the time of the Dissolution of the Monasteries, including a rood screen and the abbot's stall.
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- Aysgarth in the Domesday Book. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
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