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Name: My Friend Jack
Comment: 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.

Name: Richard Haysom.
Comment: This was my Mecca in the 1970s. 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+.

Name: Adrian Wood
Comment: Hello, 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.

Name: Dominic Alldis
Comment: 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.

Name: Peter Chadwick
Comment: I used to go there to buy records.

Name: Eileen Neal
Comment: Happy memories of listening to the pop records of the 1950s etc in Barnes and Avis, later Rumbelows - anyone remember Hickies or Brown's?

Name: Arnie Gibbons
Comment: Bought my first single (Peter Sarstedt - Where Do You Go To My Lovely) there.

Name: Steve Lowe
Comment: Used to spend hours in the record department, especially on a wet Saturday afternoon, or when I had a few record tokens to spend!

Name: Jo Diz
Comment: Dad worked here

Name: Steve Rose
Comment: So did I

Name: Sylvia Brown
Comment: Used to be Barnes and Avis before it became Rumbelows. I worked in the record department in the heyday of Elvis, Tommy Steele etc.

Name: Patrick Turner
Comment: Bought my first album there... they had listening booths.

Name: Hugh Payen
Comment: I studied voice production upstairs with a Dr Andrews who trained the Coasters. I met Peter Noone of Herman's Hermits at the record bar... Yup, thousands of pounds between Hickies, Rumbelows/Barnes & Avis, and Norman Hackett’s. I 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.”



138-141 Friar Street RG1 1EX Reading / Berkshire
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