There have been more encouraging signs for the area’s economy this month, when two very different business ventures opened new showrooms in the town.

Kent Mobility, specialising in high quality equipment for the disabled, has invited one of its clients, Sittingbourne’s 2012 Paralympic wheelchair rugby captain Steve Brown, to attend the company’s launch event on April 18.

The company, which is setting up its showroom at Sanderson Way, provided a specially adapted chair for the sportsman, who also works as a Sky Sports presenter.

There will also be another star appearance at the event from horse rider and para show jumper Susi Rogers-Hartley, a former Navy officer who suffered a severe accident that left her paralysed from the waist down.

The Norfolk-based rider was determined to continue with her sporting passion, and Kent mobility were able to work with her to produce a power chair enabling her to mount her horse. She went on to win an event at Hickstead, and also recently starred riding a striking black horse in a TV advert to mark the 250th anniversary of Lloyds Bank.

Sharon King, operations director for Kent Mobility, explained the company had been established more than 25 years at its Tonbridge base.

She said: “I believe our business is unique as we are able to provide wheelchair users with equipment that fits their requirements in the knowledge that people don’t have the same body shapes.

“We can adapt equipment to how it will work best for people in their homes, and having people like Steve Brown here for the launch is a great example of how we can help people.”

Towns Heating & Plumbing Supplies, also based in Sanderson Way, is due to launch its new showroom facilities on April 18 as well.

Company boss Alex Town said: “The new bathroom showroom will be an exciting addition for the company.

“We offer an extensive range of bathrooms that can suit almost any taste, look and budget. We can help customers design their bathrooms with our state-of-the-art virtual world design system.

“We also pride ourselves on our customer service and that’s what has helped us grow over the past four years. Launching our new showroom means we can help offer more choice for customers.”