Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Final Day Looms for Beloved CQ Store; Dews Closes Its Doors after 60 Years, but It Marks a New Adventure for Owner Vicki

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Final Day Looms for Beloved CQ Store; Dews Closes Its Doors after 60 Years, but It Marks a New Adventure for Owner Vicki

Article excerpt

Byline: Michelle Gately michelle.gately@capnews.com.au

WHEN Vicki Bastin-Byrne closes the doors of Dews for the final time on Saturday, it really will be the end of an era.

The store was founded six decades ago and has maintained a strong presence in the region since then.

But the sale of its current home on Derby St was a sign for Vicki that it was time for a new adventure.

Life without the business will be a complete change for Vicki, who grew up watching her parents run the store before taking on the challenge herself.

Jack and Anne Dew fell in love during their Second World War service with the RAAF, returning home to Rockhampton to start a family and buy a business together.

They transformed Boltons Drapery into Dews in 1956, a drapery and department store which boomed successfully in the days before chains like Target or Big W.

At one point they had stores in Allenstown, Wandal, North Rockhampton, and Yeppoon.

Vicki said her mother was ahead of her time, managing the stores and raising a family of three.

When Anne and Jack retired, Vicki and sister Pam Whyte took over, revamping the flagship Allenstown store as a boutique clothing outlet.

Vicki's husband Greg joined the business when Pam retired and the business underwent another transformation, starting to specialise in homeware as well as clothing.

Seven years on, the timing is right for a whole new phase of life.

A West Australian caravanning adventure awaits, but the change is tinged with sadness as Vicki farewells the shop which has always been part of her life.

"We're really looking forward to a new adventure and a new era in our life," she said.

"Dews has been a fantastic business. It's been very good to us."

Selling the business was always out of the question for the family, who took pride in having their name above the door. …

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