Barkston Ash

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Barkston Ash
Main Street, Barkston Ash - - 151425.jpg
Main Street junction with the A192, Barkston Ash
Barkston Ash is located in North Yorkshire
Barkston Ash
Barkston Ash
Barkston Ash shown within North Yorkshire
Population 370 (2011)[1]
OS grid reference SE491361
Civil parish
  • Barkston Ash
Shire county
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district LS24
Police North Yorkshire
Fire North Yorkshire
Ambulance Yorkshire
EU Parliament Yorkshire and the Humber
List of places
53°49′09″N 1°15′16″W / 53.819220°N 1.254460°W / 53.819220; -1.254460Coordinates: 53°49′09″N 1°15′16″W / 53.819220°N 1.254460°W / 53.819220; -1.254460

Barkston Ash is a small village and civil parish close to Selby in North Yorkshire, England. Until recently[when?] it was officially named Barkston.


Church of the Holy Trinity, Barkston Ash.

According to local folklore, an ash tree that stands in the village gives it its name and marks the centre of Yorkshire – although the actual centre is closer to Hessay.[2] A legend has it that anyone who spits at the tree will be struck by lightning a year and a day later, and an apocryphal figure, known as Jack Foll, is supposed to have suffered this fate.

Until 1753, the Barkston Ash Folly – a form of medieval football involving pigs' bladders and "lighteners" (wooden staves) – was played by the young men of the village. The game is supposed to have commemorated Jack Foll.

Now part of Selby district, the village previously gave its name to the former wapentake of Barkston Ash.[3]

Barkston Ash was also the name of the local parliamentary constituency of Barkston Ash until 1983, when its boundaries were redrawn to divide the area into Elmet and Selby. The Barkston Ash constituency was traditionally a safe Conservative seat, though both successive constituencies elected Labour MPs in 1997.


  1. ^ "Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 16 August 2015. 
  2. ^ "Where is the Geographic Centre of Yorkshire?". The Yorkshire Ridings Society. 4 March 2012. Retrieved 31 May 2016. 
  3. ^ Langdale, Thomas (1822). "A topographical dictionary of Yorkshire; containing the names of all the towns, villages, hamlets, gentlemen's seats, &c. in the county of York". Northallerton: Langdale J: 149. OCLC 5211910. 

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