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Rumbelows, also in Friar Street were the first to sell import 45s. By 1977, the record department was run by a lady called Mrs Wolfe (I think). Lovely lady. Comment: My Friend Jack 45 Cat forum.

This was my Mecca in the '70s. They always had - or could always get - the obscure singles I wanted. Everyone else had the Top 20, they had (or had access to) the Top 100+. Comment: Richard Haysom.

I am hoping that you might be able to help me.
My name is Adrian Wood but I was born Richard Hopkins in Tilehurst in 1949 to Margery Hopkins who lived all her life in the Reading area and worked for many years selling pianos in Rumbelows Reading. I do not know if the shop was always Rumbelows but latterly I am told that the Reading branch was the only one to continue selling pianos. She worked with a Mr John Skews and they were close friends for many years.
I am looking for any information or reference to my birth mother during her time at Rumbelows; ideally perhaps a photograph. I have one photo of her in 1991 after she retired and only five years before she died.
Apologies if my request is not within your remit and perhaps you may now some one to who you could pass on the contents.
Thank you
Adrian Wood (2019)

Hello Adrian, I was touched to read your email from 2019. I was at school in Reading (Leighton Park) and a keen jazz pianist. I used to frequent Rumbelows on Saturday afternoons to listen to wonderful Mr Skews play the piano. He was a superb musicians and I recall Margery being there too. I do not have any more information for you, but I do have a nice recording of Mr Skews playing the piano in the shop. I can send you the sound file if you are interested. Best wishes, Dominic Alldis

Dominic Alldis


Peter Chadwick

I used to go there to buy records.

Eileen Neal

Happy memories of listening to the pop records of the 50's Etc in Barns and Avis later Rumbelows anyone remember Hickies or Brown's????

Arnie Gibbons

Bought my first single (Peter Sardsest - Where Do You Go To My Lovely) there.

Steve Lowe

Used to spend hours in the record dept, especially on a wet Saturday afternoon, or when I had a few record tokens to spend!

Jo Diz

Dad worked here

Steve Rose

So did I

Sylvia Brown

Used to be Barnes and Avis before Rumbelows. I worked in the record dept in the heyday of Elvis, Tommy Steele etc

Patrick Turner

Bought my first album there..they had listening booths.

Hugh Payen

I studied Voice production upstairs with a Dr Andrews who trained the Coasters .. met Peter Noone "Herman's Hermits" at the record bar... Yup thousands of pounds between Hickies, Rumbelows/Barnes & Avis, & Norman Hackett’s. remember both Norman and his Son, who moved the business to Caversham after his Father passed.


Dave Harwood
27 Nov 2023 at 05:30
I found this advert dated 21st October 1969:
“Choose from thousands of records at Rumbelows Record Bars. Singles from 3/6. LP's from 17/6.”



Friar Street

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