Sad note for city as music store to close
A WELL-KNOWN shop in Swansea is set to close after serving the city centre for over 30 years.
Cranes music shop, based in the St David’s Shopping Centre, has been selling a range of musical instruments since 1987 but it will soon be closing its doors for good.
It means the firm, which was established in Cardiff in 1851, will cease trading.
Lee Jones, the manager of the Swansea store, also worked at the Cardiff branch which closed a few years ago, called it “the end of an era”.
He said: “It’s hard to put your finger on what exactly it is but retail is down all over and instruments are available online so it starts to go into price wars.
“We’ve always had the shadow of the building being torn down [as part of regeneration plans] and there’s been less and less footfall so it’s hard to stock the gear that people ask for so it slowly starts to slow down.
“It’s been different with just Swansea left as the one in Cardiff closed a couple of years ago. There’s not as much footfall as Cardiff so it’s been a struggle. It’s the end of an era for Cranes.”
A date has not yet been set for its closure but hundreds of people have already shared comments on the store’s Facebook page, with many calling the closure “very sad”.
“Obviously the staff are upset as they’ve put their heart and soul into it but it just got harder and harder,” Mr Jones added.
“People seem shocked that we’re closing. It’s had quite a big response.
“For our regular, loyal customers it’s not just a shop, it’s a social thing as people like to come in here and absorb the atmosphere.
“We’ve had really loyal customers over the years but the majority of people are buying online and we can’t compete.
“We’ve got a huge tuition school here too so we’re going to try and keep that going and find a new premises.
“It’s a real shame as there are no other businesses like us in Swansea.”
A Swansea Council spokesman said: “Nobody likes to see a city centre business close.
“We are happy to offer a range of advice and guidance to businesses wishing to trade and grow in Swansea.
“Online shopping has made the climate more challenging for retailers everywhere, including Swansea.
“It’s one of the reasons why the council, together with its partners in the Welsh Government and Bid (Business Improvement District), is pulling out all the stops to transform the city centre, encourage increased footfall and create new jobs.
“Our regeneration plans are on track. The multimillion pound Kingsway revamp is due to be complete next year and work is progressing on our landmark digital indoor arena complex.”
They added: “Thousands of Swansea homes and businesses are to benefit from a multi-million pound investment in world-leading full fibre broadband, a technology providing reliability and connectivity for decades to come.
“We are creating a brilliant destination for visitors and residents alike that will benefit existing traders and new ones for years to come.”
Manager Lee Jones with Dan Morris and Chris Capel at Cranes Music in Swansea.