The English surname Ashford is an habitational name from any of several places called Ashford. Those in Essex, Devon, Derbyshire, and Shropshire are named from Old English æsc ‘ash’ + ford ‘ford’. One in Surrey is first recorded in 969 as Ecelesford, probably from a personal name Eccel, a diminutive of Ecca ‘edge (of a sword)’ + ford. The one in Kent is from æscet ‘clump of ash trees’ + ford. 17th Century recordings include recording was that of Ambrose Ashford, who was convicted of being a Monmouth rebel in 1685 and transported to the Barbados as a slave.
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