Aidensfield – The Home of Heartbeat
To ardent followers of the TV show Heartbeat, the town of Aidensfield, and in particular the local pub called “The Aidensfield Arms” became like a second home. Through 372 episodes from 1992-2010, the town became almost real to us.
In real life, the town is called Goathland and is pronounced as it is spelled. The nearby town of Whitby actually exists, but Ashfordly was totally fictitious. The Goathland railway station was also used as the Hogsmeade station in the Harry Potter movies.
Much of Goathland still retains its Aidensfield links, with the hotel remaining virtually unchanged and the Scripps Garage still standing opposite the pub as it was in the show.
The local villagers are more than happy to show off “Aidensfield” to the tourists that still flock there, trying to recapture the Heartbeat atmosphere.
We hope you find our Town interesting and it brings back some happy memories. Enjoy the pictures and video and maybe even book yourself into the Aidensfield Arms for a night or two!
Although the TV show revolved around the police station at Ashfordly, and Aidensfield was only one of the towns on their “Patch”, the town featured in most of the episodes. The pub became the central social point for most of the characters. Buildings such as Scripps Garage, which doubled as the local Funeral Service, the Post Office and shops, and Claude Greengrass’s house can still be visited today.
The town is in the Scarborough district of North Yorkshire, about 8 miles south-west of Whitby, a seaside town on the east coast of England. It sits 500 feet above sea level on the North York Moors and is a picturesque area, taking on many different colours as the seasons change.
The Aidensfield railway station is on a heritage deviation line that operates steam trains carrying over 350,000 passengers a year on the 18 mile run from Pickering to Grosmont. Privately owned by the NYMR Trust, it is arguably the busiest line of its type in the world.
With its history going back to the Viking days, Aidensfield is still only a village, with a population of just over 400. The police house in the show is actually 70 miles west in Askwith and the Ashfordly police station is the old courthouse in Otley.
Here are some pictures that we are sure you are all very familiar with, and are bound to bring back some memories. You can click on them to see larger versions, and cycle through the slideshow.
The Goathland Post Office actually has a sign on it saying “Aidensfield Post Office”. Gifts, souvenirs and photos can be found at the Aidensfield Stores shown in the village shops picture above.
If you really want to experience the atmosphere of Heartbeat, then what better way is there than to spend a night or three in the Aidensfield Arms itself? Now owned by Keith and Jean (Gina?) Richardson, you can book online or ring them on 01947 896203 and they and their staff will be sure to make you welcome, and let you in on all the local tourist spots.
There is no smoking now, so you won’t have to put up with Alf’s ciggy’s! But you can still bring Alfred, as dogs are welcome.
Take a Drive Into Town
Before you leave us, sit back and watch a short video clip of driving into town from the railway station.