A PETITION has been launched to change the name of Purfleet, to Purfleet-on-Thames, in a bid to improve regeneration and business in the area.

The Purfleet-on-Thames Community Forum are behind the plans, and have been working towards a name change since 2002.

Now, with a host of councillors on board with the plans, including council leader Rob Gledhill, a petition has been launched hoping to gain resident backing for the proposal.

It is hoped, with major regeneration planned for the area, the name change will see the area become more viable as a location.

The forum have dug out a number of former references to Purfleet-on-Thames, including the first known use of the name on a postcard in 1866, while use of the name grew in late Victorian and Edwardian times.

Trevor Batchelor, vice chair of the community forum, said: “What do you think of when when you think of Purfleet?

“The usual answers are the Garrison Estate, the industry or people have not heard of us or know where we are.

“Changing the name will raise the profile of the area and with the regeneration gives residents hope for the future. With outline planning in for the regeneration of Purfleet it seemed the ideal time.

“I announced our push for the name change at our forum meeting in November last year. In January forum members overwhelmingly agreed to take the name change forward. Shortly after we showed Ken Dytor, head of PCRL our campaign flyer he thought it so strong that he rebranded the Purfleet Regeneration - Purfleet on Thames.

“I emailed all our councillors ealier in the year about the name chane. All responses were positive.

“Our three ward councillors support the change as does head of the council Rob Gledhill.”

“The aim of the name change is to make Thurrock a “better place to work and live”.

To add your name to the petition, visit https://purfleet-on-thames.org/petition/