This interesting and unusual name is of English origin and is a locational name from a so called 'lost' village, probably once, found in Lancashire, where the name prevails. The derivation is from the Olde English pre 7th Century 'aesc', ash, with either 'heall' hall, or 'halh', nook, recess. The phenomena of the 'lost' village was a result of enforced land clearance that took place in the 13th Century and 14th Century, at the height of the wool industry, to make way for sheep pastures, as well as the more natural causes such as plague and war. It is estimated that there are between seven and ten thousand 'lost' villages that have disappeared from British maps. One John Ashall, the infant son of Ralph and Margaret Ashall was christened on 8th March 1585 at Standish, Lancashire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of George Ashall, which was dated 16th April 1559, Chorley, Lancashire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, Good Queen Bess, 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.