Last updated November 17, 2019

Christmas at Ashby de la Zouch

Fred, Sylvia and many others...

Our next stop was with Fred and Sylv, arriving on Christmas Eve and departing on Boxing Day (December 26th). We always enjoy visiting with these folk, they are great hosts and relaxing company.

On Christmas morning, while dinner was being prepared, I went on walkabout around Ashby de la Zouch. Although the weather remained cold and foggy, everywhere was very quiet with almost no traffic - overall, a nice time to look around. Ashby has a lot of history including the remains of a 15th century castle and, of course, the usual selection of pubs. Here are some snaps.

Remains of Ashby Castle

Built originally around 1480, enough of the castle remains to justify formal tours

Deserted Market Street

Nothing open, no people, little traffic - everyday should be Christmas day!

The Lamb

One of about a dozen pubs - one for each 1,000 of the population, typical of small English villages and towns

The Queens Head

Another former coaching inn

The White Hart

Not too much imagination in the names so far

Bowling Green

Although this was taken around 11:00am the exterior and interior lights can still be seen, an indication of the low light level at this time of year

The Plough

Located right across the square from Bowling Green

Shoulder of Mutton

Another popular name, this one at the bottom end of Market Street

Holy Trinity Church

On Kilwardby Street at the east end of town

Mill Lane Mews

Running between Market Street and North Street

Mews again

Several buildings in these mews have won awards for their condition and appearance

Around noon, back in the comfort of the Harvey's house, the rest of the Christmas Day visitors began to arrive. Jeanine, husband Paul and their three boys Nathaniel, Joshua and Aaron drove down from Nottingham and were followed shortly by Paul's parents, Peter and June, who drove up from Luton. For the next five hours the former tranquility was replaced by much noise, confusion and scurrying rugrats.

Fred and Sylv remained implacable throughout while they produced and served a superb classical Christmas Dinner followed by a dazzling selection of awesome desserts. Hooray for England!

Our Host, Fred

In true master chef style, the Harveys' fed the 5000 without a hitch

Our Hostess, Sylvia

Complementing each other perfectly, Fred and Sylv seemingly cooked up dinner in their spare time while entertaining the hordes

What a spread!

Turkey, ham, wonderful veggies, great gravy and spectacular Yorkshire Puddings!

A dinner to remember

From soup to nuts, everything went smoothly and was enjoyed by all


Jeanine with her youngest, Aaron

Paul Lucas

Probably the noisiest of Jeanines children, Paul seemed more into Christmas than the other boys

Peter Lucas

Paul's father having a great time enjoying his grandchildren

June Lucas

Paul's mother prepping for dinner

Nathan looking cute

More formal but still cute

Joshua in relaxed mood

Joshua telling it like it is

Aaron, not saying much at all


Jeanine clearing up the aftermath. Daughters can be so useful

Proud parent & grandparents

Paul, Peter and June watching a video of the kids taken on Christmas morning

By six in the evening, the Christmas visitors had gone and peace was restored. There followed a nice relaxed evening with yet more delightful eats. Overall, a very excellent Christmas.


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