Previously, the Belfast Zavvi stores were safe, but now the axe has fallen. Following on from the closure of 22 shops on the 8th January, the BBC is reporting that a further 18 Zavvi stores are to close, wiping out most of the Northern Ireland Zavvi presence. Not only will Belfast's flagship store on Royal Avenue (part of the Castlecourt shopping centre) close, the Zavvi stores in Newtownabbey (in the Abbeycentre), Newry (in the Buttercrane Shopping Centre), and Londonderry / Derry (in the Foyleside Shopping Centre) are also set to shut up shop.
These closures and the subsequent redundancies will mean that there will only be one Zavvi store in the whole of Northern Ireland - ironically the newest store, in Belfast's Victoria Square development. Sad times, not just for the workers, but also for music buyers in Londonderry, Newry, and the Belfast area.
On Saturday, I was in the Belfast Zavvi stores, but with the big bargain-hunters, the stores were total chaos, and half-empty shelves looking as glum as the staff. Maybe Richard Branson got out in time. Either way, bye bye to Zavvi - we never had the time to get to know you.