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Dawsons Music - Warrington closing after 120 years

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Sign of the times...

img_9839-702x336.jpg

Altrincham and Huddersfield also going...

Shame. Good store... handy for pedals, leads, books and other shizzle

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A 18 year old me went for an interview there in April 2003. 

I left the Manchester shop in 2014.

It was time for me to go, but some great people will be unemployed when they shut the shops.

Think music retail in the traditional sense is over.

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6 minutes ago, AndyTravis said:

Think music retail in the traditional sense is over.

And we won't realise what a seriously bad thing that is until it's too late.

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3 minutes ago, Beedster said:

And we won't realise what a seriously bad thing that is until it's too late.

“It’s on the internet for £7.65 less mate...”

just the way of the world now.

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I've got a bad feeling about Dawsons Liverpool too . I go in there all of the time, the staff are great but there is a stock clearance on at the moment and there just seems like too little gear in there given the size of the store.

Really hope my fear is unfounded.

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26 minutes ago, edstraker123 said:

I've got a bad feeling about Dawsons Liverpool too . I go in there all of the time, the staff are great but there is a stock clearance on at the moment and there just seems like too little gear in there given the size of the store.

Really hope my fear is unfounded.

I think there are new owners - they’re clearing the decks to start again.

David Briggs who employed me (and had owned them since the 70’s) is a true Gentleman, one of the most intimidating yet kind hearted and funny (dry) men I’ve ever met.

His Daughter and Wife are also wonderful people.

I wish them all the best, but the market has evolved without the “shop” model. 

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I bought my son his first guitar from the Stockport branch a few years ago - good selection to choose from and super-helpful staff, they even let him use the staff toilet to change his son's nappy! It closed soon after when the rent and rates went up. Sad loss. 

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10 minutes ago, josie said:

I bought my son his first guitar from the Stockport branch a few years ago - good selection to choose from and super-helpful staff, they even let him use the staff toilet to change his son's nappy! It closed soon after when the rent and rates went up. Sad loss. 

I started at Stockport, May 2003-August 2003

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6 minutes ago, BassBunny said:

Altrincham is closing as well.

Huddersfield store too - help set it up in 2010/11

shame, nice guys.

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3 hours ago, Mykesbass said:

Very sad sign of the times.

Unfortunately it’s retail in general, music stores included.

I and probably a lot of folks on here are all as guilty for purchasing via the internet.

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Whilst I buy most of my music gear online, I have bought a fair amount of stuff from Dawsons Liverpool over the years and would miss them hugely if they closed.

It's not just the cheaper online retailers which are putting the last nails in the high street coffin - it's also forums such as BC where we can look at reviews which help us decide on a bit of gear without the need of a hands on experience. It's just the way of the world these days. It's all about convenience - the internet has made us lazy.

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Fraid it's a sign of the times. When I first moved to Cheltenham 20 years ago there were four instrument shops, down to 0.5 of a shop now, only open a few days a week and with much less stock. Playing guitars etc is mostly an older man's game.  

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Barking Spiders said:

Playing guitars etc is mostly an older man's game. 

Agree, a contrast to when we were young and every teenager had a guitar or bass. What will it be like in 25 years? I guess that's the way things go with popular music.

 It could be compared to the the piano market(real piano, not "keyboard") that existed for the better part of a century and every home had a piano and kids took piano lessons and the sheet music market flourished. In my part of the world(Canada) lovely pianos are being sold cheaply or given away and it's been like this for years.

Times and tastes change,I'm glad I was around when the guitar boom started in the 60's and I'm still playing, totally changed my life.I have met many fantastic people, including the mother of my son,  while gigging or jamming and hope to continue as long as I can.Still gigging in two bands and in my 73rd year.

Oh, and we "older men" often have a bit more cash to invest in overpriced instruments to support the market. You know how it goes..."now that I have paid off some debts and am a bit more comfortable financially I'm going to buy the (insert toy of choice here) that I always wanted".Been there, done that and I'm still doing it!

Edited by Staggering on

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42 minutes ago, Staggering on said:

It could be compared to the the piano market(real piano, not "keyboard") that existed for the better part of a century and every home had a piano and kids took piano lessons and the sheet music market flourished. In my part of the world(Canada) lovely pianos are being sold cheaply or given away and it's been like this for years.

Yeah, my wife inherited a lovely piano, 50 years old and in incredible condition. It's been valued at £1000 and £150 for the stool alone, but were advised that if we want to sell via ebay etc. to put it up for £500. We have to move in the near future and can't take it with us, so this beautiful piece will likely be given away for nowt if there are no buyers.

That said, if it goes to a school which it likely will, it will be played to within an inch of it's life and contribute to the ongoing life of music, as it always should have.

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Unfortunately, I am not shocked about Dawsons. Shame.....but you could see these stores closing a long time ago.

The Altrincham one is only down the road from me at the moment....might pop in.  

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I did not even know there was one in Huddersfield. I have visited the Leeds one (recently doubled in seize) a few times, and the Altrincham one often as it's where my in-laws live.

The Chester one is nice too, sort of rambles over a few mezzanines under a grotty NCP.

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Yes definitely changing times. One of the other music shops in Liverpool - Curly music has changed their model and moved to higher end gear. This seemed to work for our favourite luthiers who all hiked the prices as we hit austerity and still have very long waiting times.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, burno70 said:

Whilst I buy most of my music gear online, I have bought a fair amount of stuff from Dawsons Liverpool over the years and would miss them hugely if they closed.

It's not just the cheaper online retailers which are putting the last nails in the high street coffin - it's also forums such as BC where we can look at reviews which help us decide on a bit of gear without the need of a hands on experience. It's just the way of the world these days. It's all about convenience - the internet has made us lazy.

Dawson's were pretty good on price and would generally match any online prices you could find in store. I think the quality of guitars from the big manufacturers  particularly at the lower end has improved exponentially in recent years giving us the faith to order online and know that the thing that arrives is probably going to be playable with a little bit of tinkering.(I've has some amazing cheap ibanez's of late)

I think the 2nd hand market is probably bigger too and it is possible to pick up something £100's or even £1000's cheaper than a new item in excellent condition ( like the  Shuker 😀)

Edited by edstraker123

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6 hours ago, Staggering on said:

It could be compared to the the piano market(real piano, not "keyboard") that existed for the better part of a century and every home had a piano and kids took piano lessons and the sheet music market flourished. In my part of the world(Canada) lovely pianos are being sold cheaply or given away and it's been like this for years.

I was given my first DB by a music shop owner who, having seen us gig, thought we'd sound better with DB than electric (and biy, he was right). He used to provide them to schools and found that schools were asking him to take them back FOC because no-one wants to play them anymore, and they were simply too big to store (I passed it on to a guy on BC once I'd upgraded to my current 4/4). His shop is still going well, but perhaps only because he matches best internet prices, and we live in a town with two universities and a few public schools so there's a decent amount of disposable cash around. There are times when I want to say "mate, charge me full whack, much as I like the cheapness, I also like having a decent music shop in town". I bought all my daughters various instruments from there (including the World's loudest tambourine which was not clever), and send all my friends and colleagues there, because they can try the gear. I still worry that the shop won't be there much longer though :(

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the one store still going strong in my city will price match any Australian online price. I will buy from them. I got my Elf and two 10" cabs for $200 less each than retail from them. And seeing as all their competitors are interstate, they should ADD shipping to the price they match, but they don't hehe

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