Nine HMV stores have shut their doors as the music retailer begins its programme of closures. The HMV Group announced at the beginning of the year it would shut 40 HMV stores and 20 Waterstone's shops within 12 months in a bid to cut costs, and it has begun to close some music outlets already.
The first HMV stores to shut have been smaller, secondary units in cities and towns that have more than one outlet. On Sunday HMV branches in Birmingham, Brighton, Croydon, Ealing, Glasgow, Liverpool, Nottingham, Oldham and Plymouth closed with one more expected by the end of this week.
The remaining Waterstone's and HMV closures are expected within 12 months.
A HMV spokesperson said: "We've begun the process of reviewing our store portfolio, with the main focus right now being locations where we have more than one store trading in close proximity to each other, which means we are broadly catering to the same public.
"The stores we've just closed are pretty much secondary sites, leaving much larger superstores in place to ensure that we maintain our specialist offer in these locations. We're currently in consultation with affected work colleagues, who we're doing our best to redeploy to nearby stores where we can."
The decision was made in light of poor trading figures for HMV over Christmas. Waterstones like-for-like sales were down 0.4% in the five weeks to 1st January but HMV UK and Ireland figures were down by 13.6% in that time.