It is one of a group of Thurrock settlements, the Grays prefix denoting ownership by the Gray family. The simple name "Grays" is recorded as early as 1399.
St. Peter and St. Paul Church was largely rebuilt in 1846, but incorporates work of the 12th and 13th centuries.
The Dene Holes have puzzled antiquarians for centuries, but seem to be a remnant of early mining.
Blue Badge Guide Colin Crosby is available to lead Guided Walks around Grays for groups.