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Get singing to showcase Gillingham

A gospel choir leader wants people to come together in song to celebrate a town.

Mayowa Oyinloye runs an annual concert in Gillingham High Street and this year, she wants to do something different to bring the community together.

The Lock Street resident wanted people to learn an original song to be sung in the High Street as part of an event called Sing Gillingham Sing, which was planned for the end of June.

However, as it has now been postponed, Mayowa is hoping people can learn the song, called Sail Away, from home.

Mayowa is the gospel choir leader at St Mark's Church in Canterbury Street. For the past five years, she has run an outdoor music festival called Let Loose.

She said: "I think it's a good thing for people to keep busy. They can go and learn the songs as a family.

Last year's Let Loose concert in Gillingham High Street
Last year's Let Loose concert in Gillingham High Street

"We will be able to put something together for the community. Imagine, after the pandemic we can get together, and that really shows the community spirit."

Mother-of-three Mayowa said the songs had been written with the community in mind.

She said: "I have been living in Gillingham for seven years now and before I came, I Googled Gillingham and there was so much bad press that I almost didn't want to come here.

"But when I came I saw people smile at you, they look after each other.

"I just want people to see we are a community. I just think something like this will bring us together."

The response so far has seen people send videos of themselves singing and dancing to the song on the event's social media pages.

Mayowa Oyinloye
Mayowa Oyinloye

The first of the two songs due to be released for the event, Sail Away is on the Sing Gillingham Sing YouTube channel.

To find out how you can get involved, visit the Sing Gillingham Sing Facebook page.

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