Hi Street! highlights

Rotten Records - Wellingborough

Rotten Records, Wayne holding Hi Street! sign

We love the stories behind small businesses and hearing how people have made their hobby into something they can share with others, and today we have a feature to share about the brilliant Rotten Records which you can find on Midland Road in Wellingborough.

This is probably one of the coolest shops in town and we loved visiting and seeing the huge range of music and memorabilia this place is home to, and meeting business-owner Warren who has gone from collecting and selling records online to opening his first shop in his hometown last summer.

Music is a huge part of my life and has been since my early childhood. I was brought up listening to a variety of genres and it’s a huge achievement that I’m now running a business with music at the heart of it.

Rotten Records is a place for music enthusiasts and vinyl collectors, everyone is welcome whatever their age and music taste! We are a place where people can come together to share their love for music and find something special to them. We have a constant soundtrack and a friendly vibe and themes such as ‘rubbish album of the week’ to add a touch of humour to the business. 

I have a very open mind when it comes to music and we have an extensive collection at the shop with punk, rock, reggae, soul, blues, metal, indie, hip-hop and more available. You’ll even find some pop records in the collections which are my guilty pleasure, but my passion is classic rock and punk. 

There are also entertainment systems to play records, cassettes, and CDs on as well as clothing and music memorabilia for sale, and we have cleaning products available to buy, to keep vinyl in top condition.

I sell records online as well which is where it all started, but with my collections taking over my home, my wife was getting a bit fed up, so after a lot of consideration I decided to open my own shop, and I’m really enjoying it. 

There are so many benefits to music, it is very emotive and can be a great mood enhancer. It is a wonderful way for people to connect with the lyrics, and with others, and it can help people through challenging times. I believe music has a very positive effect on people’s mental health and wellbeing.

Our customer base is diverse, ranging from avid collectors seeking special releases to those looking for unexpected gems. I recently sold a Cliff Richard record which did make me smile! Vinyl has become popular again since retro and vintage trends came in, and I’m mindful of this and making sure I’ve got the right stock to appeal to everyone.

I’m always on the lookout for rare and interesting finds, it’s exciting when you explore and discover something special, I love that part of the job and the opportunities it brings. I spend a lot of time searching for collections that are for sale and will travel to buy those that I know will be popular at Rotten Records. It’s great meeting like-minded people, I’ve made connections far and wide, and we attract collectors from various locations who come to explore the vast record collections and memorabilia, including clothing and posters.

Having the shop means I can meet customers in person and build genuine connections with them which is something you don’t get when you are shopping online or with the big brands.  I’ll often hear something play and contact my customers when I know it’s something they'll love. Teenagers enjoy coming here, and I like chatting to them and recommending music, and seeing their tastes evolve.

It can be challenging attracting people into the shop, and I’m always thinking of ideas and want to be a talking point in the town, watch this space! I’m also thinking of new ways to grow the business and have a few thoughts to explore further, I’ve learnt that it’s important to stay focussed and prioritise and that’s something I would advise anyone considering setting up their own business to do.
Warren - Rotten Records

Stop by this brilliant small business to see all that Rotten Records has to offer and to meet Warren who would love to help you find the perfect items to add to your collection. The shop is open Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 10am to 5pm.

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Last updated 18 April 2024