An ex-Fleetwood Town footballer has teamed up with former TV favourite Michael Barrymore to launch the star’s new clothing range - designed by Barrymore’s dog.
It sounds like one of the TV funnyman’s madcap sketches but in fact Barrymore is now putting his efforts into designer togs for men.
And the former Strike It Lucky presenter was up to his old tricks on a visit to Fleetwood, popping into the local Asda and washing a woman’s hair at a hairdressers.
Former Town player Paul Haslam, who runs the award-winning Northern Rags boutique in Poulton Street with his wife Chloe, got talking to Barrymore via Twitter.
He said the star was looking for specialist shops for his designer clothes range and Paul and he got together to make Paul’s shop the first in the region to stock the gear.
Paul has been running the store for three years and got into retail after playing at Highbury in the 1990s.
He said: “I always wanted to do my own thing and we set up in the midst of the recession but are doing well.
“People don’t want to be seen out wearing the same thing as anyone else and so I only stock one of each item in each size. It is specialist clothing and we get people coming from all over the North West to buy our things.”
Michael Barryomore said he built up a friendly business relationship with Paul on Twitter, and agreed to let his shop be the first in the region to stock his new range.
He said: “Paul’s been great really supportive and we have been working together for some time now. So I have come up to help him look at expanding. We’ve been in a bigger premises across the road from his shop and we will be buying some floor space off him there.
“We decided not to go to the most obvious retail places, we wanted a certain exclusivity. People who are really into their clothes will seek out places like Paul’s to find these sort of clothes.
“Everything is made in Britain. The shoes in Northampton, the chinos in Leicester, shirts in Twikenham, and using Harris Tweed, and I have taken it all right the way through with the manufacturers.
“They like the branding, it’s quality wear, really good so we are not talking Tom Fool prices. But that is what some people want.”
“I did not sit down and decide to go into the fashion industry. I went to a farm to buy a Jack Russell, a working dog, and I asked the farmer if the dog had a name he said no, but he looked like the farmer so I asked him what his name was and he said Dave. So that’s what my dog is called.
“You know what they are like Jack Russells, always after something and he kept scratching my trouser leg at the back and frayed my jeans. A friend said what are those jeans they are nice and I just said, ‘They’re Made by Dave.’ It happened to a jacket too.
“Then I met a man who was head of Ted Baker Europe and he said it was a great idea for a brand. When I was in Rehab a couple of years ago in my down time I worked on a couple of shirt ideas. I had some done in Turkey but then I thought it would be a good idea to have them all made in this country.
“I am not into making money, its about making something work and seeing it through properly. If you do that then the money will follow. I have really enjoyed it.
“Now I am here in Fleetwood with the early goods for the new season which Paul is going to carry for us.”
Paul added; “Michael has been very kind. He’s here today to help me look at moving to a bigger premises. Its about five time bigger than the current shop.
“If someone said to me 10 years ago I would be expanding my shop and working with Michael Barrymore I would have said you were stupid. But there you go.”