Ashley Ward

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"Ashley ward" redirects here. For the council ward, see Ashley (Bristol ward).
Ashley Ward
Personal information
Full name Ashley Stuart Ward
Date of birth (1970-11-24) 24 November 1970 (age 45)
Place of birth Middleton, Lancashire, England
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Playing position Forward
Youth career
Cheadle Town
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1989–1991 Manchester City 1 (0)
1991 Wrexham (loan) 4 (2)
1991–1992 Leicester City 10 (0)
1992 Blackpool (loan) 2 (1)
1992–1994 Crewe Alexandra 61 (25)
1994–1996 Norwich City 53 (18)
1996–1997 Derby County 40 (9)
1997–1998 Barnsley 46 (20)
1998–2000 Blackburn Rovers 54 (13)
2000–2003 Bradford City 84 (17)
2003–2005 Sheffield United 33 (5)
Total 388 (110)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Ashley Ward (born 24 November 1970) is a businessman and retired English footballer who played centre forward.

Early life[edit]

Ward was born in Middleton, Lancashire, the son of a coal mining engineer. He attended William Hulme's Grammar School, which opted for Rugby and Lacrosse as the school sports over football.[1]

Football career[edit]

Ward had a spell with Manchester United in the 1986–87 season, making 16 appearances for the club's Junior B team. He then played for Cheadle Town Youth, and chose to become an apprentice at Manchester City above an offer from Blackburn Rovers.[1]

He played for at least a dozen different clubs in a long career, including Crewe Alexandra, where he made his name, Norwich City, Derby County, Barnsley and Blackburn Rovers and Bradford City.

Ward contributed to Derby's 1996-97 Premier League campaign, scoring a late winner against Chelsea and one of the goals as Derby memorably beat Manchester United 3-2 at Old Trafford.[2][3] Barnsley signed Ward from Derby County in September 1997, shortly after their promotion to the Premier League. Throughout their debut season in the Premier League he scored some crucial and memorable goals including the only goal in 1-0 winners against Liverpool and Aston Villa at Anfield and Villa Park respectively.[4][5] However he was unable to prevent Barnsley's relegation at the end of that season.

In November 1998, whilst still playing for Barnsley in a match at Sunderland, Ward scored, missed a penalty and got sent off in the space of five minutes, with all incidents also involving Sunderland defender Darren Williams.[6]

Ward retired in the summer of 2005.

After retirement[edit]

Ward and his wife run a number of businesses, including:

  • A commercial property business.
  • Operating Abafields, a nursing home in Bolton bought for development but now operating under a manager[7]
  • Managing a £15million luxury property development company Bilton Ward Developments.[7][8][9] Formed in 2002 the company specialises in the building and renovation of luxury homes, many for footballers including Kevin Campbell and Wayne Rooney.[10] Interior design is often done by former Changing Rooms designer Laura McCree.

Personal life[edit]

Ward is married to former model Dawn. Born in Salford, she is a former school friend of Ryan Giggs. Ward proposed to her in the car park of the pub where she worked when they first met.[1][8] The couple have four daughters – Darby, Taylor, Charlie and Aston[11] — and used to live in Mill Lane, Mottram St. Andrew. He sold Warford Hall in late 2014.


External links[edit]