Ashley was born in Leeds but spent much of his life in London. Educated at Bryanston school in Dorset he then went to the other end of the UK and did a degree in Hotel Management in Glasgow. Later on he gained an MBA. Ashley retired in 2012 after an International career in hospitality and later on management consultancy. In retirement he is Chair of Governors of Ramsbury Primary School a rural primary school and also a Trustee of Green Corridor, a charity near Heathrow educating young adults with learning difficulties.
He and his Partner, Nick, own two classic cars: a handsome 1963 RR Silver Cloud which they have owned since the late 1990s and a 1965 Mercedes 230 SL both of which reside at their home near Marlborough in Wiltshire.
Aside from membership of the RREC Ashley is a member of GCCG where he used to be Wessex area organiser, the Mercedes Benz Club, and is organiser of the very active U3A Kennet Classic Car group.