Sorry, Ali G: Staines-Upon-Thames name change confirmed

Sorry, Ali G: Staines-Upon-Thames name change confirmedPA

Councillors in the Surrey town of Staines, made famous for being the hometown of the Sacha Baron Cohen character Ali G, have voted to 'upgrade' its name to Staines-Upon-Thames.

After becoming the butt of the joke as part of the spoof sketch show, some residents and businesses believe the town's tourism and economy will be boosted by the rebranding.

Alex Tribick, chairman of the Spelthorne Business Forum, was responsible for putting the name-change idea forward, and said he was "delighted" with the decision, according to the BBC.

Others, however, aren't so keen. The secretary of Staines Town FC says the argument that the new name will attract more visitors is flawed, suggesting that it doesn't take much research to learn where Staines is if you didn't already know.

He added: "If he [Mr Tribick] is looking to attract the sort of businesses that are run by people that are so stupid they can't even open an atlas or a gazetteer then I'm not sure that they're going to be very good for the future of our town."

But the borough's economic development spokesman, Councillor Colin Davis, said: "All those who voted for this excellent measure recognise that by evoking its historic position on the River Thames, Staines-upon-Thames can display its best to the world at large."

After consulting residents and businesses in the area, the council held a meeting this week, and of the 35 councillors who went, 25 voted for the name change, six abstained (no pun intended), and four voted against it.

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