New Ash Green
Building of the village began in 1967, with Span as the developer and Eric Lyons as the designer. The architectural design of New Ash Green was extremely innovative for its time. The original concept was a prototype for a new way of living in the latter twentieth century. The first buildings were created to be airy, pleasant and modern. There was generous landscaping and cars were separated from pedestrians. The village is arranged in twenty four neighbourhoods.
The development soon ran into difficulties. Originally, the Greater London Council was going to buy 450 of the properties for renting. This idea was dropped when the leadership of the GLC went into Conservative hands. This reduced the financial viability of the development and of the planned social mix of residents. Another problem in the early years was that some lenders were sceptical about the unconventional design of the properties and would not give mortgages.
Span, the original developer, sold the project to Bovis in 1971 for £2.65 million. Bovis increased the size of the development, increasing density and giving less attention to design or provision of public space.
New Ash Green is now a quiet residential area. It has a rugby club, tennis club, football club, shops, children's parks, a primary school, a special needs school and many more public buildings. The village had its own internet forum, but this has now closed. A new New Ash Green Community website launched on 2 November 2010, offering a replacement for the NAG Active service with a great deal of improved functions. This later closed and a new website created, called NAGVAl.
New Ash Green has its own Social Committee, which is made up of local residents. The Social Committee is responsible for organising social events in the village. For example Fireworks Night, Village Day and the Children's Craft Day. The social committee is a non-profit organisation who are passionate about the village. Although the design of the village is considered innovative and makes good use of space, the design has brought some problems. New Ash Green has over recent years had some problem with car-theft since parking bays are not located near houses. In addition the shopping centre has become run-down due to lack of landlord maintenance; plans are now being put forward to redesign it
- Friends of New Ash Green Village Centre (FONAGVC) Website of the Friends of the New Ash Green Village Centre:includes history of the development of the village
- History of the village and architects: website by SPAN
- New Ash Green Web Forums
- New Ash Green Community Website
- Plans to revamp village News Shopper 4 June 2008
Media related to New Ash Green at Wikimedia Commons