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Dublin: 6 °C Thursday 13 December, 2018

The iconic Waltons music shop on Dublin's George's Street has closed down

The retail business will now operate exclusively from its Blanchardstown branch.

The premises has been emptied following a sale in its last few days last week.
The premises has been emptied following a sale in its last few days last week.
Image: Sean Murray/

THE MUSIC SHOP Waltons has closed down its iconic George’s Street premises, almost a century after it opened its first branch in Dublin city centre.

In a blog post, Waltons managing director Niall Walton said that “yes times are changing and we must change with them”.

The business will now be based at its branch at Blanchardstown shopping centre, with the decision due in part to “ever rising costs of doing business in the city centre”.

The branches have been some of Dublin’s prime locations to purchase musical instruments and accessories since it first opened its doors on North Great Frederick Street in 1922. The George’s Street branch was opened in the early 1990s but was closed last week.

Speaking to the Irish Times, Walton said it was a “heartbreaking” decision to make.

The shop famously appeared in the 2007 film Once, where Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova sang Falling Slowly.

Waltons will continue to operate its school of music above the now-empty shop on George’s Street.

When announcing the closure, Walton said that the company needs to “evolve and adapt to the changing retail landscape”, and cited the availability of musical instruments online as being detrimental to business.

He said: “There are many changes in the retail landscape that have already come and more are on the way as the choices people have for the way they shop develop and the ways their needs are serviced changes.

In the age of algorithms and robots the consumer has many choices. Waltons has been servicing a huge variety of customers music needs since the foundation of the State in 1922.

The first shop was founded by his grandfather Martin Walton, a violinist who fought in the civil war and went on to establish the Dublin College of Music.

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Sean Murray

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