Ashley was raised in Wick, a small fishing village in the county of Caithness on the north east coast of Scotland, and he went on to study filmmaking in Glasgow. In his early-20s he began exploring ancient landscapes in the remote North Highlands and presented his archaeological findings to the Orkney International Science Festival and has since written four non-fiction books about his discoveries.
Ashley became an elected member of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, incorporated by Royal Charter in 1783, and became the Resident Historian on Scottish television’s The Hour Show. He presented 46 episodes of The People’s History Show while teaching filmmaking and television presenting at the University of the West of Scotland. He also markets his family restaurant, Captain’s Galley, which for almost two decades has been one of the most highly-awarded sustainable and ethical restaurants in the world.
In North America Ashley wrote, presented and produced NBC's hit-adventure series Legend Quest following his global hunt for lost historical treasures and featured on PBS’s documentary series Great Estates; listed on Amazon’s 2016 top-ten most downloaded documentaries.
In 2018 Ashley filmed an extreme-cyclist racing from South America to Alaska on the Pan American Highway Challenge; filmed a treasure hunt in Scotland with Discovery Channel’s Josh Gates for Expedition Unknown; searched for Inca mummies in Argentinian mountain caves with Travel Channel’s Ramy Romany on Mummies Unwrapped and he filmed a team of 12 explorers in Colombia searching for petroglyphs on sacred hills.
Today, Ashley writes news and research features for various history and archaeology platforms and produces weekly short films exploring the archetypes of myths, folklore and fairytales on his Clan Mythology platform. And 2020 brings new documentaries such as Ancient Botanics exploring the lost eco-traditions of Pre-Colombian cultures and Highlander’s Gold searching for lost Jacobite war-chest in Scotland.