THE oldest and last remaining dedicated independent music shop in the Lake District is to close.
David Snaith, 64, who runs Action Replay at Lake Road, Bowness, is turning off the music after 31 years.
He made the announcement in the same week as music giant, HMV, went into administration.
With CDs declining in popularity and an increase in people buying music online or downloading from the internet, Mr Snaith said his approaching 65th birthday seemed a fitting time to stop.
He opened in December 1981, when Queen and David Bowie topped the charts with Under Pressure. Back then, the shop sold vinyl records but fully embraced the dawning of the compact disc age.
Mr Snaith said he had never considered vinyl superior to CD.
“Record companies have two choices,” he said. “Sell you a CD for £5 or get you to pay £20 to £25 for it on vinyl. Most would notice a big effect in the music they listen to by simply changing their speakers.”
Mr Snaith said he tried to reflect his own broad taste in music in the shop, selling everything from 16th century church music to contemporary African sounds. Walls of the shop feature framed classic album covers from Elvis to John Lennon and Queen, which will be sold off as part of a closing down sale that started last Friday.
For many years, the shop supplied all of Cumbria Libraries. In 2009, the re-opened Morpeth Library in Northumberland, ordered more than £12,000-worth of compact discs, its biggest ever order.
Mr Snaith said: “I think it’s sad in a way that a lot of people are missing out because they download specific tracks rather than an album. “If you’re an X Factor winner, your album probably isn’t worth listening too but for serious artists, the tracks on the album are in the order that they are for a reason. “You would never just read one chapter of a book.”
Mr Snaith said the future for traditional record shops ‘looks little short of bleak’.