Flippin' Good Fun at this years Shrovetide

1 March 2017

For the third year running, Ford & Stanley’s Pete Schofield & Dan Taylor hosted a table for over thirty clients at this year’s annual Shrovetide, on Tuesday 28th February. 

The Royal Shrovetide Football Match (which dates back to at least the 12th century) is a "medieval football" game played annually in the town of Ashbourne in Derbyshire. The game is played over two days on Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday each year, between the Up'Ards and the Down'Ards of the town. 

To start the day and alongside an inclusive-bar, a networking breakfast was served at The Bridge, Ashbourne. Following the start of the games at 14:00, everyone gathered for a hog roast lunch and to conclude the day’s proceedings, guests were treated to a curry at The Viceroy on Midland Road in Derby. 

Shrovetide is taken rather seriously by those who take part, with local businesses boarding up the fronts of their shops and restaurants to prevent the onslaught of the masses throughout the two-day event.  Clients and employees braved the freezing cold temperatures to enjoy the festivities of the day with Ford & Stanley’s Senior Recruitment Consultant and Ashbourne local, Ricky Wright joining in on the action.


Head of Sales & Commercial, Daniel Taylor commented, “this is our third year hosting the Shrovetide social event, and it's becoming somewhat of a tradition. With Ford & Stanley being 'All About Relationships', Shrovetide offers the opportunity to get out of the office and spend some quality with suppliers and clients at one of England’s oldest sporting traditions. It was also a great opportunity for new clients to get to know us and gain an understanding from them, of what truly makes us different. Feedback has been phenomenal from our guests with comments such as “same again next year?” ... Absolutely!." 

What is Shrovetide?

With three goals three miles apart, the games start each day at 14:00 and last until 22:00, although if a ‘goal’ is scored before 17:00 (this year 17:30) a new ball is released and play restarts from the town centre, otherwise play ends for the day. The game is played with a ball, larger than a standard football, which is filled with Portuguese cork to help the ball float (for when it inevitably ends up in the river!) The ball is rarely kicked, though it is legal to kick, carry or throw it. Instead it generally moves through the town in a series of hugs, like a giant scrum in rugby, made up of dozens if not hundreds of people. 

Rules include:

  • The ball may not be carried in a motorised vehicle.
  • The ball may not be hidden in a bag, coat or rucksack, etc.
  • Cemeteries, churchyards and the town memorial gardens are strictly out of bounds.
  • Playing after 22:00 is forbidden.
  • To score a goal the ball must be tapped three times in the area of the goal

Special thanks to www.thebridgeashbourne.co.uk for helping us make the event such a success

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