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Shrovetide Football, Belper Road, Ashbourne, c 1906-16
Hans P Hansen
About this image
Shrovetide football seen on Belper Road, Ashbourne (before the road widening) and before the building of the Park Estate. The Shrovetide Football Match was first recorded in 1682, though it is thought to date back to the 12th century. Many attempts were made to suppress the game over the years, but by the 1920's it had become part of local life, and was given the title 'Royal' after the Prince of Wales' visit. The Game is played annually on Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday, and consists of two teams, one consisting of anyone born to the north (Up'ards) of the River Henmore, and one from people born to the south of the river (Down'ards). The goalposts (one at Sturston and one at Clifton) are three miles apart, and the aim of the game is to strike to post with the ball. The ball may be kicked, carried or thrown. The game usually starts at 2pm and can last for many hours, finishing well after dark. H P Hansen was a Norwegian photographer who married a member of the Haycock family (clockmakers) of Ashbourne. He had a studio in Ashbourne for some years around 1906-1916 and later moved to Bramcote Hills near Nottingham.