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About Beverley

The East Yorkshire market town of Beverley is one of Yorkshire’s hidden gems. Just 15 minutes from Hull and 30 minutes from York, with regular trains in and out of the town’s railway station, Beverley is ideally situated, with much to offer the visitor wanting to stay in and around the town, or to use it as a base for venturing further afield.

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The most popular derivation of the name Beverley is the Anglo-Saxon ‘Beoferlic’ or ‘Beaver Clearing in the Woods’ - quite probably a reference to the beavers that used to dwell on and around the River Hull as it passed Beverley. Although the beavers have long since gone, the town's crest depicting a beaver by water still remains. Bertie Beaver, the Town Council mascot, is also often seen around Beverley.

The town’s greatest claim to fame is the 13th Century Minster, a graceful gothic building of considerable magnitude and architectural elegance. Plus, Beverley is home to the oldest state school in the country, with Beverley Grammar School founded in 700AD.

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Shopping and Leisure

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Beverley is home to a wide range of shops, both familiar high street names and small independent stores. Clothes shops, music shops, electrical stores and outdoor shops, among many others, are all in abundance, congregating on the main street through the centre of town.

The town also plays host to markets on Saturday and Wednesday, after which the two ends of the town are named. Places to eat vary from Michelin Star restaurants to independent eateries and small patisseries to friendly cafes.

The Leisure Complex and playing fields provide Beverley with a popular sporting facility, with a huge range of classes and sports on offer. The 25m indoor swimming pool hosts galas and events on a regular basis, whist also being the perfect place to hold children’s parties or to simply go for a relaxing swim. The skate-park and tennis court in the grounds are well-used, and the playing field holds football games for local clubs. There is also an all-weather pitch on Swinemoor Lane and a polo club.

Festivals and Fairs

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Festivals are also playing an increasingly important role within the town, by providing opportunities for creative and cultural events. These include the Beverley Literature Festival, Early Music Festival, Puppet Festival, the Festival of Christmas and the Beverley and East Riding Folk Festival. Beverley Town Council is also leading the way with such events, having in past years organised the Battle of Beverley service and two town-wide celebration acknowledging the 50th anniversary of V.E. Day and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

The Beverley Food Festival, held on the first Sunday of October, attracts tens of thousands of people to the town each year. The festival is opened by a well known TV or Radio presenter and the current town Mayor at 9.30am. The day is filled with entertainment, with demonstrations from Michelin star chefs and musical performances from local choirs and bands. The festival is made up of 100 stalls, all of which contain local food (nothing from outside Yorkshire), and a large main marquee theatre, where the cookery demonstrations take place. The festival has also provided the opportunity to raise money for the Mayors’ charities, through charity BBQs run by local caterers.

Beverley Fair is an annual event held in Saturday Market. It is a week-long funfair, starting on the day of August bank holiday. This historic fair has been around since medieval times, when it was a place to trade goods and animals and to socialise. Since then, the livestock at fairs dwindled, and the pleasure and entertainment side has grown in popularity. The fair now consists of a variety of fairground rides and refreshment stands, providing hours of fun and entertainment to all who visit.

The 30th anniversary of the Beverley Folk Festival was in 2013. The huge increase in popularity has meant that the festival took place on the Beverley Racecourse, as opposed to the leisure centre playing fields where it has been located in recent years. Each year, the line-up includes a huge variety of acts, from local budding artists, to top national and international performers, including folk, World music, acoustic, contemporary, Americana, and some classic rock. The festival also hosts poetry, comedy, and the increasingly popular Festival Film Club.

Parks and open spaces

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A unique and much-loved area of Beverley is the Westwood. This common pasture land has been under the guardianship of the Pasture Masters for generations, alongside the other common lands of Swinemoor and Figham Pasture. Beverley is very lucky to have such unspoilt areas accessible to all residents and visitors.

Of course, Westwood also houses the racecourse. Horse racing has taken place in the town since the 16th century and it continues to play a vital part in the area's current economic sustainability, with the annual Ladies Day in August attracting massive crowds. It is a flat racing course of approximately 1.3 furlongs and has in the region of 20 afternoon and evening meetings between April and September.

A selection of open gardens and play areas, such as the North Bar park, Burden Road Queen Elizabeth II playing field and the beautiful memorial gardens on Hengate, provide green spaces in the town for children to play, or just for quiet reflection and a sit down to enjoy the surroundings. Beverley Beck is a canalised natural waterway, described as ‘Beverley’s lifeline before the age of railway’, which connected Beverley with the River Hull and, therefore, the Humber and Europe.  Visitors have commented on the Dutch atmosphere of Beckside.

Museums and Galleries

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The Treasure House is a multi-disciplinary centre for heritage and information services. It contains Archives and Local Studies, Beverley Library, a Museum and Beverley Art Gallery. There is also a coffee lounge and gift shop, and you can get a magnificent view of Beverley and the Minster from the tower.

The Beverley Guildhall is a Grade I listed building which has had a long and fascinating history. Originally purchased by the Beverley town keepers in 1501, it has been in continuous civic use since then. Today it is run as an historic building and community museum but is still used for ceremonial civic occasions. The two rooms of the Beverley Community Museum show temporary exhibitions on the local history of the town and displays of items from the Guildhall's museum collection.


Beverley is a wonderful town in which to live. From the gothic majesty of the Minster and the rolling grasslands of the Westwood, to the regeneration of old industrial areas and the community spirit that is evident throughout all quarters of the town. Beverley Town Council is proud to be part of this rich history and will continue to play a positive and active role within it for many years to come.

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Bertie Beaver


Beverley Town Council

12 Well Lane


East Yorkshire

HU17 9BL

01482 874096