Sad note as MVC is called into administration

Cloud hangs over Bedford's last dedicated chart music retailer

Bedford could lose its last dedicated chart music retailer after MVC went into administration four days before Christmas.

Just hours earlier the firm had agreed to sell 40 of its 73 stores to rival retailer Music Zone, but that deal is now under review. It is not known whether the Bedford store would have been one of those to change hands.

A spokesman for administrators Kroll blamed music sales in supermarkets and over the internet for squeezing out high street retailers.

Kroll partner Andrew Pepper said: "MVC is a well-established brand name as well as a high street business, which has been unable to respond to changes to the dynamics of the marketplace.

"We are hopeful that we will be able to find a buyer for the business. The stores remain open and well-stocked, and we hope our customers will support us."

This website found the Bedford store anything but "well-stocked" two days before Christmas, but staff there are still being paid, and Kroll claims there are no plans for redundancies at present.

MVC was formerly owned by Woolworth, but was sold for a reported 5.5million in a management buy-out four months ago.

MVC is the last remaining chart music store in Bedford, after both Our Price and the independent Andy's Records went out of business in recent years. WS Records, Big Shot Records and Classic Music are all specialist stores.

Pete Burridge, who DJs at Esquires in Greyfriars, said: "If MVC goes, then music lovers will only have little sections in WHSmith and Woolworth which sell chart music in the town centre.

"I personally don't like ordering music off the internet, I like to see it before I buy.

"But I have heard on the grapevine that both HMV and Virgin are looking to move to Bedford, so hopefully this won't be the end for Bedford's music."