Staines votes for name change to escape Ali G association

A town in south east England has voted by a majority of 2:1 to change its name in a bid to escape association with the infamous Sacha Baron Cohen character – Ali G.

Staines is well known as the characters hometown, a fact residents are keen to undo by naming their burgh Staines-Upon-Thames instead.

It is believed that the rebranding initiative will allow the town to escape such negative associations, bringing with it a host of economic benefits.

Alex Tribick, chairman of the Spelthrone Business Forum, led the campaign. He said: 'There’s no doubt Ali G put Staines on the map - but for all the wrong reasons. He put the stain in Staines.

'The town was derided. Despite its situation along both banks of a beautiful stretch of the river, property prices are well below average.”

A tab for tens of thousands needed for sign changes will be picked up by the local business community.

The official name change will take place on May 20.

John Glenday

John Glenday is responsible for compiling The Drum's daily morning bulletin and ensuring that overnight breaking news is covered while you're still brushing your teeth. Can also make a mean cup of tea.

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