Ashby Historic District Commission

The main purpose of the Ashby Historic District Commission is to help the Town of Ashby preserve and maintain the unique characteristics of the designated Ashby Historic District, to encourage property owners to maintain properties, and builders of new structures within the district to choose designs and details which complement the existing structures. The Ashby Historic District is, in general, the Ashby Common and the buildings which surround the Ashby Common as can be seen from the common, New Ipswich Road, and Main Street. The Historic District and the responsibilities of the Historic District Commission are defined by the Ashby By-Laws. With the exceptions cited in the By-Laws, the Historic District Commission reviews for appropriateness any work that occurs within the Historic District.

The Historic District Commission has worked closely with the Massachusetts Historical Commission to design and write instructions for filing an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness, the Application for Certificate form, the Certificate of Appropriateness form, and the rules and regulations of the Historic District Commission. The documents have been used to issue a Certificate of Appropriateness to roofing work that was done at the Legion Hall and at the Ashby Market. Currently, the Historic District Commission is working on developing design guidelines, which identify the characteristics that help define the district.

The Historic District Commission has attempted to provide current information on the workings of the commission to the property owners within the Historic District. The Town of Ashby is the owner of several buildings in the Historic District, including the bandstand, carriage shed, Grange Hall, Legion Hall, and the Ashby Free Public Library.

During the next year the Historic District Commission will be designing a sign to mark the district in a similar manner to the sign that marked the common during the town bicentennial celebration in 1967.

Also, during the upcoming year, the Historic District Commission anticipates being asked to review several projects including the expansion of the Ashby Free Public Library and the construction of the Ashby Post Office. The Historic District Commission welcomes the opportunities to serve the town by helping to preserve the unique and special place that is the Ashby Historic District.

Respectfully submitted,

Paul S. Lieneck, AIA Chairperson

John Holland, Vice Chairperson

Elaine Kielty, Secretary

Helen Nash, Commissioner and District Resident

Claire Lavin, Commissioner