Liam Gallagher, the former Oasis singer, is riding to the rescue of traditional high street record shops by selling vinyl albums through his Pretty Green chain of fashion stores.
The number of independent record shops in the UK has fallen from around 2,000 a decade ago to 300 today. However vinyl sales rose by 40 per cent last year and are at their highest level since 2005, according to official figures.
Pretty Green, which was founded by Mr Gallagher in 2009, will sell a range of classic albums – from Exile on Main Street by The Rolling Stones to The Seldom Seen Kid by Elbow – from 10 of its shops for a limited period from the end of this month.
Customers will be able to buy the albums by browsing record sleeves on display in Pretty Green’s shop windows and then ordering them via a mobile telephone app. The records will then be delivered to the customer by post.
Brian Rose, the managing director of Universal Music UK’s commercial division, which is behind the venture, said: “We are seeing continued passion as well as new enthusiasm for vinyl through our online store Uvinyl and the great support the format gets from those indie music shops which are still flourishing.
“But by harnessing the latest technology we hope this partnership with Pretty Green will lead to much wider opportunities for selling music on the high street.”
Nigel Grant, Pretty Green’s brand director, said that selling records complements the clothing company’s brand and ideals.
The app, called Simply Tap, has been developed by technology company Mobile Money Network.
John Milliken, the company’s managing director, said: “Our instant mobile checkout allows shoppers to buy what they want, when they want it. People walking past the Pretty Green store window will be able to instantly buy vinyl records 24 hours a day, seven days a week and have them delivered to their preferred address.”