Ash, Maurice Anthony

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Ash, Maurice Anthony (1917–2003). Indian-born English planner. An impassioned critic of post-1939–45 bleak, high-rise housing estates, he declared that the mess made of British cities in the 1940s, '50s, '60s, and '70s was a mirror of the values held by those in power. A supporter of the British New Towns programme of 1946–67, Ash was drawn to the Town & Country Planning Association, but was dismayed when he saw that the Government was using the New Towns as vehicles for public-housing policies while at the same time conniving at massive erosion of the Green Belt. He was also concerned by the change of direction of the Association, which became increasingly embroiled in public inquiries concerning airports and nuclear energy. At the end, he greatly feared the collapse of civilization, perceiving the architectural, environmental, and social problems of postwar Britain as symptoms of a greater malady.


Pk; The Times (6 Feb. 2003), 33