Today well-known music retailer, HMV served their last customers in Nuneaton’s Ropewalk Shopping Centre.
The closure was announced last month, back in December, so it was not a complete surprise to customers. Customers have noticed bright yellow closing down signs in the shop windows.
It has been confirmed by management for the shopping centre that Bodycare shall be the next occupant to move into the unit, however it is currently unknown whether the Abbey Street branch will be retained.
HMV were selling off their stock on a 20% closing down clearance sale to mark the end of the retailers time with the shopping centre.
HMV were unavailable to reach for comment during the time of this article’s publication.
Retail Consultant of Canny Insights, Graham Soult, said: “When HMV collapsed again, six years later, HMV was initially saved once more.
However, in any such scenario following a retailer’s administration, there are likely to be many short-term lease deals, with break clauses on both sides, while tenant and landlord assess the situation.
Assuming that Bodycare’s relocation to the ex-HMV unit is confirmed, this is actually a positive reflection on Nuneaton, in that big-name stores are wanting to remain and invest – and it’s totally within the landlord’s right to accept an offer on the unit that will deliver a better rent for them than HMV was able to offer.”
When Notizie asked residents of the town their thoughts of the closure, we heard a variety of responses.
19-year-old regular towngoer, Vaughan Moore said: “It is unfortunate that they are closing down, but as consumers switch to streaming both music and movies, do we really need HMV around? It’s like how some people would rather shop for groceries online than visit their local supermarket.”
One HMV customer said: “I think it’s because lots of people buy and stream online, so there’s less need for CD’s.”
Nick Betteridge, a store regular, said: “In my opinion, I think the landlords are greedy and that’s why we’ve lost some businesses. I’ve been supportive of HMV as I’ve been into music all my life. I’ve always liked the physical format.”
Another customer commented on the closure by saying: “It’s the only thing like it in the town. There’s CeX, but that’s not the same.”
On Facebook, Paul Sinclair expressed his view on the closure, he said: “It’s a shame as it’s a bit of an institution but it’s how we consume now, I used to have hundreds of CD’s but now I’ve got everything on my phone.
The re-emergence of vinyl hasn’t really kept them going either. With streaming services, the film side of it is also defunct, and although there may be a generation left that still buys DVD’s and CD’s, it would only be a matter of time.
As much as anyone will try and spin this as rent or even try to make it a council issue, that’s nonsense to be frank, it’s just the evolution of consumer behaviour.”
Richard and Claire Parkes, on a shared Facebook account said: “It’s very sad but a sign of the times. When I was young, I would spend hours in record shops and save up to buy my favourite songs.
It was the best feeling when I’d finally purchased an album, getting it home, playing really loud and learning the lyrics from the inlay. Nowadays, you just have to click and favourite tracks are instant. So, sadly, record shops have become redundant.”
Jo Lomas described it as “the end of an era”, and Theresa Griffiths said the situation is “a real shame”.
Nuneaton resident, Emma Rayne said: “I haven’t used HMV in years. Everything is streamed and takes up less space!”.
Kayleigh Jane said: “It’s nothing to do with their trade, the rent was too high! It was one of the best things about the Ropewalk and one less reason for me to go now!”
Notizie will keep you updated with any information about Bodycare moving into the unit.