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Last Updated:  Monday, 10 March, 2003, 06:53 GMT
Dickens jewellers to shut
Rochester City Jewellers
Charles Dickens wrote about the jewellers in Great Expectations
A jewellers shop in Kent, written about by Charles Dickens, is to close after nearly 170 years of trading.

Rochester City Jewellers in the High Street opened in 1836 and is believed to be one of the oldest family-run businesses in north Kent.

The shop was one of Dickens' favourite when he lived in Chatham.

The Victorian writer even mentioned the store in the novel Great Expectations.

Owner Philip Pike said: "It is the end of an era. There seems to be quite a close relationship between Charles Dickens and Mr Best who was the then owner.

"I would have very much liked it to have continued but unfortunately that wasn't to be.

"There isn't really sufficient customers to justify someone else coming into the town as a jeweller."

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