Having teamed up with Network Rail and Purley Business Improvement District, the artist has painted the mural which includes an iconic pear tree honouring the Anglo-Saxon heritage of the area.
The mural on Godstone Road reflects the towns name, Purley. The name comes from from the Anglo-Saxon word “Pirige“ meaning pear tree and the word “Leah” meaning woodland clearing.
The towns name means “A woodland clearing where pear trees grow” which was altered and recorded at the start of the twelfth century as “Pirlee”.
After the railway made travelling much easier, the town became a popular place with many new houses being built.
Lionel Stanhope said: “I’m really happy with this mural and the pear tree is a nice touch which reflects the Ango-Saxon roots of the town. I hope the locals appreciate it – I received positive comments from people passing by when I was working on it.”
Catherine Garrad, engagement manager at Purley Business Improvement District said: “We are really proud of the art that Lionel Stanhope has created and the ties of Purley with the railway. Even more impressive is that Purley still has the remains of the original Surrey Iron Railway dating back to 1802.”
Eddie Burton, community engagement manager at Network Rail said: “The wall in Purley looks great and I’m glad we could highlight the wonderful heritage of the town. We own bridges and other structures across the South East and not only do these murals make them much nicer to look at, but they also encourage people to respect and look after them.
“We’re always open to creative ways in making our bridges look better and more welcoming for the neighbourhood.”
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