Ashcroft, British Columbia

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The Corporation of the Village of Ashcroft[1]
Ashcroft is located in British Columbia
Location of Ashcroft in British Columbia
Coordinates: 50°43′32″N 121°16′50″W / 50.72556°N 121.28056°W / 50.72556; -121.28056Coordinates: 50°43′32″N 121°16′50″W / 50.72556°N 121.28056°W / 50.72556; -121.28056
Country  Canada
Province British Columbia
Region Thompson Country-South Cariboo
Regional District Thompson-Nicola Regional District
Founded 1880s
Incorporated as a Village 1952
 • Type Elected village council
 • Mayor Jack Jeyes
 • Governing body Ashcroft Village Council
 • MP Mark Strahl (Conservative)
 • MLA Jackie Tegart (BC Liberals)
 • Total 51.45 km2 (19.86 sq mi)
Elevation 335.2 m (1,099.7 ft)
Population (2011)
 • Total 1,628
 • Density 32.3/km2 (84/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC−8)
 • Summer (DST) PDT (UTC−7)
Postal Code V0K 1A0
Highway Highway 97C
Waterways Kamloops Lake
Bonaparte River
Thompson River

Ashcroft (2011 population 1,628)[2] is a village in the Thompson Country of the Interior of British Columbia, Canada. It is 30 kilometres (19 mi) downstream from the west end of Kamloops Lake, at the confluence of the Bonaparte and Thompson Rivers, and is in the Thompson-Nicola Regional District.

Ashcroft's downtown is on the east side of the Thompson River, although the municipal boundaries straddle the river, with housing and the town's hospital and recreation complex on the west bank. It is something of a "twin" to nearby Cache Creek, which unlike Ashcroft is on the major highway.


Ashcroft's historic fire hall, rebuilt in 1919 after a massive fire

Ashcroft was founded in the 1860s, during the Cariboo Gold Rush, by two English brothers named Clement Francis Cornwall and Henry Pennant Cornwall, founders of Ashcroft Ranch, who emigrated to Canada from Ashcroft, at Newington Bagpath in Gloucestershire.[3] The brothers had originally come in search of gold; however, on hearing stories from failed gold searchers they decided to found the town to give future gold searchers a place to saddle their horses. They sold flour to packers and miners, helping to make the community.

In 2001, Ashcroft expanded its boundaries to include the Ashcroft Ranch, which had been bought in 2000 by the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD) with the intent of using it as the site of a landfill to succeed the Cache Creek sanitary landfill. In 2011, however, the British Columbia government denied an environmental assessment certificate for the landfill, and Metro Vancouver expressed a desire to divest itself of the property.[4]


Ashcroft is the most arid place in southern Canada (some places in the Canadian High Arctic have less average annual precipitation totals than Ashcroft, notably Eureka, Nunavut which is the driest place in Canada), and it is the only place in the country that meets the threshold for a true desert. The Coast Mountains to the west block most of the moisture moving inland from the Pacific. The village is located at a relatively low elevation in a deep valley, which allows high pressure systems to form during the summer months, which in turn creates adiabatic heating.

Sagebrush and prickly pear cacti predominate on the low elevations in this area, with dry pine on the heights above. The area is known for its cattle ranching, with the historic Ashcroft and Basque Ranches southwest of town, and the Parke Ranch—among the very oldest in British Columbia—skirting the town limits of Cache Creek.

Because of its arid climate, Ashcroft and the surrounding area have occasionally been utilized for movie productions as stand in background terrain while portraying the Middle East or Desert Southwest of the United States.[5]

Transportation and communication[edit]

As a flag stop Via Rail's The Canadian calls at the Ashcroft railway station three times per week in each direction.

Ashcroft is served by a community television station (run by the Ash-Creek Television Society), CH4472 on VHF channel 4 (with an effective radiated power of 74 watts at 15 meters above ground level), with a repeater (CH4473 on VHF 8, with an effective radiated power of 49 watts at 45 meters) in the neighbouring town of Cache Creek.


Ashcroft was home to the Nl'akapxm Eagle Motorplex, a ¼-mile IHRA-sanctioned dragstrip, which opened in 1987 and closed in April 2016.

Ashcroft had its first annual Wellness Festival in July 2013.

Sister city[edit]

The town's Japanese sister city is Bifuka, Hokkaido.[6]

Television and film[edit]

Projects that have been filmed in the area include[7]

  • Sky High (1989 Disney Film)
  • Cadence (1990)[1]
  • Bird on a Wire (1990)
  • The X-Files (1993 TV Series)[2]
  • Double Cross (1994)[3]
  • Zacharia Farted (1998)[4]
  • Eyes of a Cowboy (1998 TV Mini-series)[5]
  • The Pick-up (1999 Short Film)[6]
  • Lola (2001)[7]
  • Flower & Garnet (2002)
  • Traffic (2004 Mini-series)[8]
  • The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005)
  • An Unfinished Life (2005)
  • Miss Texas (2005 TV Movie)[9]
  • Partition (2007)[10]
  • Centigrade (2007 Short Film)[11]
  • Shooter (2007)
  • Joyride 2: Dead Ahead (2008)
  • The Andromeda Strain (2008 Mini-series)[12]
  • 2012 (2009)[13]
  • Alien Trespass (2009)[14]
  • Rain Down (2010)[15]
  • Thirst (2010)[16]
  • The A-Team (2010)
  • Flicka 2 (2010)[17]
  • Afghan Luke (2011)[18]
  • The Walk (2013 Short Film)[19]
  • The X-Files (2016 TV Series - Episode: My Struggle)[20]
  • Tomato Red (2016)[21]
  • Fosters Beer Commercial
  • Ford Car Commercial
  • Gold Trails and Ghost Towns, Season 3, Episode 9


  1. ^ "British Columbia Regional Districts, Municipalities, Corporate Name, Date of Incorporation and Postal Address" (XLS). British Columbia Ministry of Communities, Sport and Cultural Development. Archived from the original on July 13, 2014. Retrieved November 2, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Census Profile: Ashcroft, British Columbia". Statistics Canada. 1 February 2012. Retrieved 16 April 2012. 
  3. ^ "Ashcroft". BC Geographical Names. 
  4. ^ Sinoski, Kelly (9 September 2011). "Province Rejects Metro's Bid for Environment Assessment for Ashcroft Dump". The Vancouver Sun. Postmedia Network Inc. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  5. ^ "Ministry of Environment - Ecoregion Unit Descriptions". Retrieved 18 November 2016. 
  6. ^ "Our Sister City". Village of Ashcroft. Village of Ashcroft. Retrieved 27 January 2012. 
  7. ^ "Most Popular Titles with Location Matching 'Ashcroft, British Columbia, Canada'",

External links[edit]