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Ascot is a small town within the civil parish of Sunninghill and Ascotmarker, in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenheadmarker, Berkshire, Englandmarker. It is most notable as the location of Ascot Racecoursemarker, home of the prestigious Royal Ascot meeting. The region is split into three distinct areas: Ascot itself, North Ascotmarker (partially in the civil parish of Winkfieldmarker) and South Ascotmarker.

Governance

Ascot is part of the district administered by the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenheadmarker, a unitary authority.

Amenities

Facilities tend to be geared towards the racecourse, although there is sufficient, if limited, shopping available in the wide High Street. Most of the expected facilities one would expect to find in a small town are here, including a supermarket, petrol station and many cafes (including a new Starbucks). Most buildings are post-war with flats above the ground floor retail space. Heatherwood Hospitalmarker is at the western edge of the town. Ascot has a stationmarker on a bi-section of the railway line from Londonmarker's Waterloo stationmarker to Readingmarker, Bagshotmarker, Aldershot and Guildfordmarker, originally built by the London and South Western Railway and now operated by South West Trains. As a consequence of the frequent service on this line, Ascot is now a commuter centre with its residents in both directions (westwards to Reading and eastwards to London).

Local schools

Prestigious schools in the area include St. George's School, Ascotmarker (a private girls senior school recently attended by Princess Beatrice of York) and Papple-prison School, one of the top boys preparatory schools in Britain. One of the local schools in the Ascot area is Charters School, which recently achieved a 'Grade 1 Outstanding' from the Schools watchdog OFSTED.Also there is the Licensed Victuallers' Schoolmarker, which is located down the road from Ascot Racecourse, and is a private and independent school.

Royal Ascot week

The centrepiece of Ascot's year, Royal Ascot is one of the World's most famous race meetings, steeped in history dating back to 1711. The royal family attend the meeting, arriving each day in a horse drawn carriage. It is a major event in the British social calendar. Although this has placed Ascot onto the British social map, it has many direct effects on the local community, not least of which are the associated traffic problems.

Army Cadet Force

Ascot also has an Army Cadet Force unit, which is known as 4 Platoon Ascot. The unit, being badged as Irish Guards (due to the unit belonging to A Company, Berkshire ACF; a company currently badged to the Household Division), means that the unit regularly sees Irish Guards events such as the famed St. Patricks Day Parade, and even has the privilege of taking part in an Irish Guards ACF skills competition, run by the battalion. It parades at 7:00pm until 9:15pm on a Monday and Wednesday night at Licensed Victuallers' Schoolmarker, and actively recruit from the local and surrounding area. The unit used to parade at Ascot Racecoursemarker, however they were evicted due to an appeal made out by the Racecourse owners. They now temporarily parade at the Sixth Form centre inside the school until their new unit is built in the nearby village of Sunninghill.

4 Platoon competed in the last Arborfield Cup, which is a testing weekend held by SEAE Arborfield Garrison, in which all of the units within Berkshire (18) are tested by regular soldiers in military skills. Ascot came 3rd overall and second in Foot Drill, under the watchful eyes of CSgt Bayliss and Sgt Molloy, and came top in A (Guards) Company.

Other

Tittenhurst Parkmarker, the former home of former Beatles John Lennon and Ringo Starr is located in Ascot. Also, Girls Aloud singer Sarah Harding was born here. Chris Evans is now a resident and is regularly seen in the local pubs.

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