This parish is on the western edge of the county of Surrey, next to the River Blackwater, which forms a natural boundary with Hampshire. The restored Basingstoke Canal winds its way through the parish past Ash Wharf and the flashes towards Mytchett Lake.

Basingstoke Canal at Ash, 1921 Photographic Survey and Record of Surrey no. 7455

Basingstoke Canal at Ash, 1921
Photographic Survey and Record of Surrey no. 7455

East of the canal is Ash Common, an area of heathland designated as a Special Protection Area to preserve the habitat of three endangered species of birds, the Dartford Warbler, the Nightjar and the Woodlark. Ash Common is occupied by the Ash Ranges military training area. The population of Ash parish now approaches 18000 people, and there are three residential areas: Ash Vale at the northern end of the parish, Ash in the middle and Ash Green to the south.

South side of St Peter's Church Photographic Survey and Record of Surrey no. 7438

South side of St Peter’s Church
Photographic Survey and Record of Surrey no. 7438

The place name Ash is derived from ‘Aesc’ which meant ‘At the Ash tree’. An appropriate name, since ash trees spring up like weeds every year in the middle of the village.

The village of Ash grew up along Ash Street between the cross-roads (now the Greyhound roundabout) and the Moated Manor House which looked out over Ash Green towards the Hog’s Back. Ash was a farming community until the mid 19th century, and a number of the farmhouses have survived until today as residential properties or pubs.

The village grew rapidly after 1854, when the Army established the Aldershot Camp just over the border in Hampshire, and purchased part of Ash Common to use for rifle ranges. Ash Vale quickly developed as people moved into the area, local businesses flourished and houses were built to accommodate retired Army officers.

Click here to see the catalogue of the St Peter, Ash, Parish Records (1548-1962) held at the Surrey History Centre.

Click here to see the catalogue of the Ash Parish Council Records (1831-1959) held at the Surrey History Centre.

Click here to see the catalogue of the St Mary, Ash Vale, Parish Records (1885-1981) held at the Surrey History Centre.

Key buildings, sites, monuments and archaeology

Further information

Search... Search for records related to Ash on this website

  • See Ash Museum’s website for a number of local history topics

7 thoughts on “Ash”

  1. Joe says:

    I am new to the area as a resident and find Ash to be a very pleasant area to live and bring up my young family. I find the local history very interesting, but I do feel that unless the area has a building ban imposed soon the community will be become too large for local services and eminties. Ash High Street is a nightmare to drive down and must be very dangerous for the numerous school children walking to and from school. I would like to suggest that Ash Parish council purchase the closed down pub and develope it in to a state of the art car park. Thgis would provide much needed parking for local residents and other members of public stopping briefly to use the local shops.

  2. Reagan says:

    I lived in Ash until Year 2 of infant school and continued to carry on my education all the way up to year 6 of Jr. School, the school of which I left just over 3 years ago and moved to a Secondary School elsewhere. I am interested in learning about the place I grew up’s local history. I have started a new topic at Secondary School in my history lessons and after digging around looking for information on Ash’s Local info for a month or two. I was wondering whether there is any further information to add to my research. Thank you for reading this.

  3. Jennifer Thurmer says:

    Good morning, I live in South Australia, and am researching a branches of my family, COLLINS and LAMPARD. Either or both families have a connection with the Victory public house, Hogg’s Back (or Hog’s Back). The families lived in the area (as well as Tongham, Aldershot, Ash, Seale). Names I have, include John Collins, b.1795, Frimley, and John’s wife Fanny; his son William Collins, born 1825, who married Harriett LAMPARD, born around 1826 in Tongham, Seale. Harriett’s brother Peter died around 1907 at Hogg’s Back Lodge. I would very much appreciate any information about ownership, or licenses in regard the Victory PH or Hogg’s Back Lodge around this time, and any additional information on these families. Thanking you in anticipation of any help you may provide. Jennifer.

    1. hazel Horne nee lampard says:

      My Dad was a Lampard . I have done quite a bit of his family tree. They were from Tongham and Seale. farm labourers mainly. My grandfather Peter Emanuel had a sister called Harriet but the dates are wrong. Her datesx are 1880 – 1925. She was born in Tongham, though.I have gone back as far as harriet Harding who married peter Lampard, my great great grandfather Peter. She was born in 1827. I think.

  4. Carolyn Orme says:

    Hi I am trying to trace my ancestry, I know my mum was born at ‘The Stores ‘ Whalf Road Ash Vale.
    I have been unable to trace any record or pictures .I am not sure whether my Grandparents run the Stores or they lived above the shop.
    If anybody has any information it would be wonderful to hear.
    Many Thanks

  5. Sue Taylor says:

    Would like to learn more about the Homeland Cafe in Ash. My mother Joan Taylor and her aunt, Vi Webb, were running the cafe in 1939/40. Apparently they used to serve up meals for a 1d, not sure about this, it may only be a family folklore. A few years ago Gt Aunt Vi son showed me the small shopping parade where the cafe had been – I’ve tried finding it via Google map without success.
    Kind regards, Sue

  6. Alan Taylor says:

    Wykeham and Winton Grange Rd Ash occupy the site of the First National School which stood from 1835 to 1915.
    Village children attended until the school was replaced in 1915 a small brass plaque can be seen on the garden wall marking the site, this school marked the beginning of education as a norm in the village.

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