Ash-cum-Ridley comes from the Old English ‘æsc’ meaning ‘Ash-tree’ the suffix differentiates
it from Ash near Sandwich. The Domesday Book records Ash as Eisse, and the Textus
Roffensis as Æisce.
Ash parish church is a Grade: II listed building, dedicated to Saint Peter and Saint
Paul. The Normans built it in the 13th century, with additions and extensions in
the 14th and 15th centuries. There is a record of three bells in 1552, which John
Waylett recast them in 1717. Richard Phelps added a fourth bell in 1727 and Thomas
Mears a fifth in 1795. In 1797, Edward Hasted describes the Ash church as consisting
of ‘three isles and three chancels, having a spire steeple at the west end’. In 1856,
Charles and George Mears completed the ring of six bells. The Victorians restored
the chancel and porch in the 19th century. Sir Thomas Jackson renewed the main furnishings
in the following century.