Coordinates: 53°05′56″N 1°14′42″W / 53.099°N 1.245°W / 53.099; -1.245
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Kirkby-in-Ashfield is located in Nottinghamshire
Location within Nottinghamshire
OS grid referenceSK 50547 56054
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townNottingham
Postcode districtNG17
Dialling code01623
AmbulanceEast Midlands
UK Parliament
List of places
53°05′56″N 1°14′42″W / 53.099°N 1.245°W / 53.099; -1.245

Kirkby-in-Ashfield is a market town in the Ashfield District of Nottinghamshire, England. With a population of 25,265 (according to the 2001 National Census), it is a part of the wider Mansfield Urban Area. The Head Offices of Ashfield District Council are located on Urban Road in the town centre.


Kirkby-in-Ashfield lies on the eastern edge of the Erewash Valley which separates Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire. Kirkby, as it is locally known, was originally a Danish settlement (Kirk-by translates as 'Church Town' in Danish) [1] and is a collection of small villages including Old Kirkby, The Folly (East Kirkby), Nuncargate and Kirkby Woodhouse. It is mentioned in the Domesday Book and has two main churches: St Wilfrid's, a Norman church, which was gutted by fire on 6 January 1907 but quickly re-built; and St Thomas', built in the early 1910s in neo-gothic style.


Kirkby Manor[edit]

Kirkby Manor dated back to the 13th Century. Its owner in 1284 Robert de Stuteville was fined by King Edward I for not attending the Royal summons. However, in 1292 Robert clearly forgiven, hosted the king at the manor to a nights stay.[2]

Tudor times[edit]

Cardinal Thomas Wolsey in 1530, travelled through Sutton in Ashfield having been recalled to London by King Henry VIII, before he stayed at nearby Kirkby Hardwick.

Charles Cavendish (landowner, born 1553) son of Bess of Hardwick had built a house in 1598 in Kirkby. [3]

Coal and transport[edit]

Kirkby-in-Ashfield was once an important centre of coal mining and railways in west Nottinghamshire, with three active coal mines and several railway junctions.[4] The former Mansfield and Pinxton Railway from the Erewash Valley Line was joined here by the later Midland Railway line from Nottingham. The Great Central Railway main line passed to the south-west side of the town and had a double junction with the Great Northern Railway Leen Valley Extension line to Langwith Junction and the Mansfield Railway to Clipstone.

Harold Larwood Statue, Kirkby in Ashfield

Rail stations[edit]

The town was served by four stations. Only one is now open:

The town rapidly expanded during the Victorian era. However the closure of the coal mines in the 1980s and early 1990s led to a major slump in the local economy, and the area then suffered a high level of socio-economic depression.[citation needed]

'Kirkby in Ashfield education in the eighteenth century as drawn by Samuel Hieronymus Grimm.'
The now-closed Kirkby-in-Ashfield East railway station in 1963


In 2013, plans were introduced to create a new civic square from what was a car park.[5][6] Nearby permanent market stalls were removed in October 2014.[7]

The town centre underwent further upgrading, starting in late 2014 and 2015 to include the demolition of the old Co-Operative foodstore and county library with surrounding pedestrian plaza, to be rebuilt with a Morrisons store.[8]

A new indoor market – named Moor Market – was created in 2021 by internally joining adjacent small retail shops into a larger space.[9][10][11]

In 2021, a new leisure centre was developed including a swimming pool for the first time in Kirkby, partially on land originally purchased in 1935 by Kirkby Urban District Council, to replace the old Festival Hall.[12][13][14]


The town has two large secondary schools, Ashfield School and Outwood Academy Kirkby.


Local politics were dominated by the Labour Party for much of the 20th century; however, Ashfield attracted media attention in the late 1970s with a shock by-election win for the Conservatives. From the 2010 General Election until her stepping down in 2019, the MP was Gloria De Piero, best known for her work with GMTV. She took over from Geoff Hoon, one-time Secretary of State for Defence during the premiership of Tony Blair. She was elected with a very slim majority of 192 votes from the Liberal Democrats' Jason Zadrozny. In 2019, Conservative Lee Anderson won the seat.

The town's most famous historical resident is Harold Larwood; the England cricketer who was born in Nuncargate in 1904, best known for his bodyline bowling in the Ashes Test series of 1932–33.

The area around St Wilfrid's Church is designated a conservation area,[citation needed] and consists of former farm buildings built from local stone, some of which are listed. In the conservation area, at the junction of Church Street, Chapel Street and Sutton Road, is Kirkby Cross. This is the remains of a thirteenth-century village cross in dressed stone, and is a listed structure and designated ancient monument.[15]


The area is covered by BBC East Midlands and ITV Central which is received from the Waltham TV transmitter,[16] some areas of the town can also receive BBC Yorkshire and ITV Yorkshire from the Emley Moor TV transmitter. [17]

Local radio stations are BBC Radio Nottingham on 95.5 FM, Capital East Midlands on 96.5 FM and community based station Mansfield 103.2 FM which broadcast from Mansfield. [18]

The town is served by the local newspaper, Mansfield and Ashfield Chad. [19]

Notable people[edit]

Places of interest[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ G G Bonser, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Transactions of the Thoroton Society of Nottinghamshire, vol XLIII (1939) retrieved on the 3rd April 2023
  2. ^ G G Bonser, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Transactions of the Thoroton Society of Nottinghamshire, vol XLIII (1939) retrieved 3rd April 2023
  3. ^ G G Bonser, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Transactions of the Thoroton Society of Nottinghamshire, vol XLIII (1939) retrieved on the 3rd April 2023
  4. ^ Railway Junction Diagrams 1914 page 143, Ian Allan Ltd reprint, ISBN 0-7110-1256-3
  5. ^ "Decision date for new town centre plans". Chad, 28 August, 2013, p.32. Accessed 9 May, 2022
  6. ^ Kirkby Square a step closer Chad, 22 October, 2013. Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  7. ^ Removal of market stalls, (Nottinghamshire County Library services). Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  8. ^ £2.4 million facelift for Kirkby is announced Chad, local newspaper, 13 August 2014. Retrieved 21 September 2015
  9. ^ Work starts on the new Kirkby Indoor Market, 19 April 2021. Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  10. ^ Moor Market comes to Kirkby, 11 June 2021. Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  11. ^ Kirkby's new indoor market ready to welcome new traders Chad, 20 August 2021. Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  12. ^ This is when the new Kirkby Leisure Centre will open Nottinghamshire Live, 18 November 2021. Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  13. ^ Sneak peek as Kirkby's new leisure centre is half way through construction Chad, 6 January 2022. Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  14. ^ Swimming pool at new Kirkby Leisure Centre filled with water for first time Chad, 22 February 2022. Retrieved 9 May, 2022
  15. ^ Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1012926)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  16. ^ "Full Freeview on the Waltham (Leicestershire, England) transmitter". UK Free TV. 1 May 2004. Retrieved 20 October 2023.
  17. ^ "Emley Moor (Kirklees, England) Full Freeview transmitter". UK Free TV. 1 May 2004. Retrieved 20 October 2023.
  18. ^ "Mansfield 103.2 FM". Retrieved 20 October 2023.
  19. ^ "Mansfield and Ashfield Chad". British Papers. 24 August 2013. Retrieved 20 October 2023.