Eel Pie Records took the decision to close a few days ahead of the official ‘lock down’, and immediately cancelled all our planned events including our ‘High Tide 2020’ festival.
As a developing business with a strong local and community focus, we had concentrated all our efforts on instore sales and had virtually no online offer, with only a few dozen new releases and merchandise available to buy. Immediately we threw all our energy into listing our stock online. Over weeks we took our inventory online to over 5,000 lines of vinyl, covering both new and our second-hand stock. A massive task!
Thankfully our customer base of loyal customers quickly showed support and bought LPs for their lockdown listening. We offered free home delivery within a two mile radius of the shop as well as postal order, and soon we were busy out on our bikes every day, maintaining distancing ‘on the doorstep’ as well as carrying hand sanitiser with us. The hashtag #eelsonwheels was gifted to us by one of our customers, and social media helped us keep going. Our customers have been able to browse online, buy local, and stay at home.
We open again today (June 15th). As we share a premises with 2 other businesses, we have had to create a separate entrance through the back door to enable us to control customer flow. We will limit the number of customers in the shop to 3 or 4 at any one time, and will keep this under review. Customers will be expected to maintain distancing.. We are providing hand sanitiser gel for use on the way IN and the way OUT of the store to make it possible for people to browse with clean hands and leave with clean hands. Disposable gloves are also being provided. We can’t wait to welcome customers back!