Place:Kirkby in Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, England

NameKirkby in Ashfield
Alt namesKirkby-in-Ashfieldsource: alternate spelling
Old Kirkbysource: hamlet in parish
Kirkby Woodhousesource: from redirect
Kirkby-Follysource: village in parish
The Follysource: alternate name for above
East Kirkbysource: alternate name for above
Nuncargatesource: hamlet in parish
TypeParish (ancient), Civil parish, Urban district
Coordinates53.1°N 1.25°W
Located inNottinghamshire, England
See alsoBroxtowe Wapentake, Nottinghamshire, Englandwapentake in which the place was located
Ashfield District, Nottinghamshire, Englandadministrative district in which it has been located since 1974
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog
the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia

Kirkby in Ashfield is a market town in Nottinghamshire, England, with a population of 25,265 according to the 2001 UK census, falling to 20,672 for the covered by the three Ashfield wards taken at the 2011 UK census (a possible alteration to the 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 from Derbyshire. Kirkby, as it is locally known, was originally a Danish settlement (Kirk-by translates as 'Church Town' in Danish) and is a collection of small villages including Old Kirkby, The Folly (East Kirkby or Kirkby Folly), Nuncargate and Kirkby Woodhouse.

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. 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 southwest 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 (near Mansfield).

The town rapidly expanded during the Victorian era. It prospered until the closure of the coal mines in the 1980s and early 1990s led to a major slump in the local economy. The area has since suffered a high level of socio-economic depression.

The railways were closed during the Beeching era leaving the town without a fast link to central Nottingham or nearby Mansfield. The railway re-opened in the 1990s as part of the 'Robin Hood' line.

The town is currently undergoing a revival and is progressively changing from a traditional mining town to a commuter base of the greater Nottingham area, however the transition from industrial centre to commuter town is in its infancy and will take some years to develop.

A nineteenth century description

A Vision of Britain through Time provides the following description of Kirkby in Ashfield from John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales of 1870-72:

"KIRKBY-IN-ASHFIELD, a village and a parish in Basford [registration] district, Notts. The village stands 1 mile W of Kirkby [railway] station, 1½ E of the boundary with Derbyshire, and 5 SW of Mansfield; is a large place; and has a post office, of the name of Kirkby, under Mansfield. The parish includes also the village of Kirkby Folly and the hamlet of Kirkby Woodhouse; and contains the sources of the rivers Maun, Leen, and Erewash, and the junction of the Erewash Valley railway with the Nottingham and Mansfield railway.
"Acres: 5,590. Real property: £11,885; of which £5,654 are in mines. Population in 1851: 2,363; in 1861: 2,886. Houses, 577. The increase of population arose from the extension of coal mining. The property is divided among a few. The manor belongs to the Duke of Portland. Kirkby Old Hall, Langton Hall, and Hardwick are chief residences. Frame work knitting is largely carried on. The living is a rectory, united with the chapelry of Kirkby Woodhouse, in the diocese of Lincoln. Value: £730. Patron: the Duke of Portland. The parish church is partly Norman, and was recently restored. The church of Kirkby Woodhouse was built in 1861. There are chapels for Baptists and Wesleyans, and a large parochial school."

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