Ashtead in Focus
Ashtead Residents' Association has published a book of 180 photographs taken by Albert Pruden at the time of the Millennium. The book is a pictorial record of Ashtead in the year 2000. A selection of Albert's photographs has appeared on the website for some time, but you can now buy the book of selected photographs.
You can order on-line via Amazon (ISBN 0954064917) or direct from ARA
If ordering from the ARA we will send your order to the billing address stated in your order. If you want the order sent elsewhere, please complete the form that appears after you have completed your payment transaction.
Evan Davis goes back to Ashtead – Built in Britain
Evan Davis, who grew up in Ashtead, goes back to examine how attitudes towards the M25 have changed since Junction 9 was first constructed on Ashtead's doorstep.
In 1996 the Residents' Association asked its members for their memories of Ashtead with the intention of publishing them in The Ashtead Resident but too many wrote in to make this possible. Instead, the memories are available to read here.
Grand Imperial Ship Canal
Did you know there were plans to build a canal from London to Portsmouth that went straight through Ashtead?
A local historian, Brian Bouchard, researched the plans that were drawn up in 1825 that would have taken a huge warship sized canal through Surrey and Sussex to Arundel and then onto Portsmouth.
For details of the scheme, the history, the dimensions and the local route map go to www.ryemeadows.org.uk and follow the link in "What's New".
Imagine what Ashtead would be like now with our own version of the Manchester Ship Canal going right through our backyard and 8 lanes of the M25 going over it!
In 1987 two pairs of semi-detached cottages were scheduled for demolition so that new maisonettes could be built on the site at the end of Woodfield by the iron railway footbridge. Originally built in the 1860s they were of historical value, and one pair of cottages was saved and moved to the Weald and Downland Living Museum in West Sussex where "Whittaker's Cottages" can now be seen.
They were called Whittaker's Cottages because they were owned by Whittaker, though he never lived there. He lived in the area now occupied by the Birch Court and Woodfield Lane maisonettes on the north side of the railway. When he lived there it was before the railway was constructed and the coming of the line bisected his property. The cottages to the south remained for rent by agricultural labourers, and Whittaker lived north of the railway in a property on what is now the maisonettes. After his death the area housed Cheney's Tea Rooms which had a playground and helter-skelter. These survived until the Second World War saw their demise.
Whittaker's Cottages were moved to the Weald and Downland Living Museum in 1987 and re-erected there in 1997.