For years, A Slice of Vinyl has been part of Katie's Kitchen in Gosport’s High Street – but today, owner Kieron Howes opened his own store in South Street.
Open seven days a week from 10am-5pm, Kieron has more than 3,000 records to sell – from classics by Queen and Fleetwood Mac to new releases by Bastille and Billie Joe Armstrong.
Celebrating the first day in the new shop, he told The News that everything had been gearing up for the big day.
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He said: ‘To be honest I think it's still sinking in for me. Getting everything sorted over the past couple of months was stressful but it's great to be open.
‘This shop is a bit bigger than the space we had at Katie’s, so there's more we can do with it.
‘We have more albums out and have been able to double our brand deals with companies like Sony and Warner, so it's a really exciting time for us.’
The shop sells a mix of re-released albums and original vinyls.
But Kieron hopes the shop will become more than just a record store, with big plans for the coming months.
‘I want this place to become a hub for music in Gosport,’ he said.
‘Once the coronavirus pandemic is over we'd love to get some acts in to play in-store, and we're planning to take part in Record Store Day next June.’
Currently, four customers are allowed in at a time due to Covid-19 regulations.
But Kieron hopes this won't put customers off. He is expecting a busy run up to Christmas.
Vinyl records have seen a resurgence in the past few years – but he says they ‘never went away’ and added that he’ll gladly buy records off other people to add to the shop’s collection.
Responding to his call for aid when setting up the shop, friends built the racks, decorated the store and sorted out the windows – all free of charge.
‘This shop was built on friendship, without which this wouldn't have been possible,’ Kieron said.
‘That’s the sort of atmosphere we want in here and we can’t wait to welcome new customers through the door.’