‘Town centre decline threatening music shop’s future’
AN independent music shop frequented by pop royalty is facing closure with its owner blaming the ‘demise of the town centre’.
For three decades Margin Music, on Market Place, Macclesfield, has been graced by a music legends including Joy Division and New Order’s Peter Hook and Bernard Sumner, Slade’s Noddy Holder and George Borowski.
Doves’ frontman Jimi Goodwin, rockers The Virginmarys and Jake Evans are also regulars at the cherished independent.
But as the shop celebrates its 30th birthday, its owner Mary Kirkpatrick fears rising costs and falling footfall has created a ‘unsustainable’ situation.
The 63-year-old said: “Obviously the internet has made things very difficult for many high-street shops, and this combined with the decline of Macclesfield town centre has seriously reduced footfall.
“Daily it seems shops become empty and almost the only thing that can afford to replace them is the charity shops which now abound.
“Sadly this does not make an attractive environment for people to visit and the memory of a bustling market town is long gone except for the last Sunday of the month.
“We are fighting hard to survive but every year sales go down and overheads up, eventually that is unsustainable.”
When Mary opened the shop in 1986 she sold vinyl records and tapes just before the emergence of CDs.
With the help of her late husband John, the business expanded rapidly to sell instruments and hire PA and lighting equipment. In 1997 Margin closed its record department and focussed on instruments.
Mary estimates that the shop has sold more than 7,500 guitars and almost 2,000 keyboards.
She said: “I like to think that almost every musical home in Macclesfield has an instrument or piece of equipment bought from Margins. But as a music teacher I find it very sad that a town the size of Macclesfield may end up without a music shop where once there were three. When I opened a tiny record shop little did I think that 30 years on we would still be trading.
“Things have become increasingly difficult more recently however, and unfortunately a 31st birthday does not look very likely at this point.
“It is really important that people in Macclesfield support their independent shops. Once they’re gone it’s too late.”
●● Owner Mary Kirkpatrick and shop manager Simon at Margin Music, which has been on Market Place, Macclesfield, for 30 years