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Celebrities line up for fashion launch

PUBLISHED: 15:57 09 June 2010 | UPDATED: 11:45 23 August 2010

CELEB: Television personality, Chris Till.

CELEB: Television personality, Chris Till.

NOT content with opening her first business, a boutique owner is aiming to revitalise the historic hub of the town. Jackie Bryne, 52, a former actor and singer used her show business contacts to stage a spectacular official opening on Saturday and reveal

NOT content with opening her first business, a boutique owner is aiming to revitalise the historic hub of the town.

Jackie Bryne, 52, a former actor and singer used her show business contacts to stage a spectacular official opening on Saturday and revealed it was only the beginning of her plans for the High Street.

She said: "I'm on a mission to make this the most popular street in the town. It once was and it will be again.

"It has been a fabulous day."

Clairvoyant Steve Evans began proceedings, with local singer Nick Woods performing at 1pm. CBeebies presenter and former Woodville Halls panto star Nicole Davis, and Dartford-born singer and TV personality Chris Till all combined to launch store Billies Boutiques. The day was rounded off with a fashion show.

Ms Bryne, from Gravesend, explained she followed her aunt Billie, a model, into show business, and when she received money through an inheritance from cousin Eunice Goldsmith she decided to set up the store in her relative's name.

"They were both fabulous women so I want to have a shop where women can come and make themselves fabulous," she added.

The introduction of home ware store Life & Style in the vacant unit formerly occupied by Woolworths last month has inspired confidence the High Street can begin to thrive again, and Ms Bryne is working hard to create a community among the independent business owners on the road. She said: "It has been difficult and a lot became quite demoralised.

Hopefully I am that breath of fresh air with the energy to make changes and get this community up and going. Today's event is just the first of a series I am planning and I am confident we can turn it around."

michael.adkins@archant.co.uk

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