Hastings Records Shops by Tony May for Hastings Town Magazine

As regular readers will know, I have a very soft spot for all things musical and have written a number of articles for H.T. about local record shops and characters associated with them.

Well, I’m delighted to inform you this month that a new website called ‘The British Record Shop Archive’ has been set up by another such enthusiast, Leon Parker.

The aim of the website is not just to record for posterity the name of every record shop to ever open its doors in the U.K. but to also make sure that the social interaction, culture and day-to-day way of life that was buying a physical music product from a real person over a counter is documented and remembered.

Having been in more record shops than Sir Richard Branson over the years I have been having a whale of a time contributing photos, memories and memorabilia to the site and you will be glad to know, have personally made sure that Jack & Sonia London’s ‘The Record Shop’ webpage has been royally decked out and the part they played here in Hastings for 44 years properly recorded.



In fact, Hastings Town has played quite a large part in helping me to see that Hastings record outlets are not forgotten. As well as my article on Jack London, I have contributed my article ‘Remembering Alan Jensen’ about the man we knew and loved as ‘Big Al’ of The Disc Jockey and submitted the photos our sadly missed friend, Ron Fellows, sent me of Stylus Records.

Being a true ‘anorak’ I also sent in photos of a few old local record shop bags I found stored away in the loft as well.

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Its sobering to think now that at the height of the popularity of vinyl records in the 1980’s there used to be thousands of independent record shops in the U.K. In 2009 that figure had dropped to just 269 (according to The Independent newspaper).

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SMART coffee meet 25 – Friday 15th January 2016.


SMART COFFEE MEET 25. The next SMART coffee meet is Friday 15th January 2016 – 3.30pm till 6.00pm in The Seafront Room, White Rock Hotel, Hastings.

Please bring any photos, cuttings, records etc that would be interesting for others to see or just bring yourself and please mention it to other like minded people.

Mick O’Dowd… Thanx for all the birthday wishes from all my fabulous fans. Without you I would be nothing. I’d also like to thank my manager and hair stylist without whom I could not appear in public.I shal be making a rare public appearance at The SMART Meet on Jan 15th and will be willing to sign autographs for you for a small consideration. No seriously folks all best wishes have been gratefully received. Thank You. xx

Jim Breeds… The hair stylist deserves an award!

Andre Martin… Colin, Alan -I think that we will have to check the small print on this character, age can have a profound impact on their state of mind


supplied by Jim Breeds. photo sourcehttps://uk.pinterest.com/pin/409546159835798885/?fb_ref=486107490937755471%3A6922f48072591f09496dcfc

Jim Breeds… photo above of the The next SMART meet up?

Andre Martin… This is a very acurate image of ” the Gangs All Here” so lets make it a great first for 2016 as a thanks to Alan for his preception and perserverance over the years, and even if the weather is cruel then we must all remember that rule ” THE SHOW GOES ON…..”

Jeanette Jones… Hope y’all have a great meet;-)



Looking For More Photos

Thank you for visiting our site and hopefully you are finding it interesting. We are always looking for more photos, cuttings etc from the 60’s onwards with a connection to the Hastings area. Especially groups we have not featured before. If you have anything please email it over with as much information as possible.