Saturday, January 12, 2013

A sad tale

Before the days of the Internet, those of us who were keen photographers bought our equipment from high street shops. Most, if not all, offered great service and more important - useful advice. They were largely manned (not PC I know but who cares) by honest people who knew what they were talking about.

There were several shops that I would regularly visit to see what was on offer. These included; London Camera Exchange, Jacobs and Jessops. There were other smaller shops I would frequent but those three were the largest with the most extensive stock.

Like many though, once I had the resources of the Internet at my disposal, my visits to the high street shops would be followed up by a trawl of the online sites to find the best price. If the difference was marginal, I would return to the high street to make my purchases – better the camera in the hand than one in the post! Unfortunately though, the price difference was often too high for me to ignore and I would make my purchases online. That has increasingly become the case over the last few years.

Jacobs closed last year and now Jessops have gone into receivership meaning that their 187 stores will close, many at the end of today. I can’t help but sorry for all those employees who will now be out of work and for a firm that was started in 1935 by Frank Jessop. It is also a sad day for people like me who enjoyed browsing their shelves.

The situation here in Spain is somewhat different. Online trading is not as widespread as it is in the UK and people do still rely on the high street shops for most of their purchases. I have bought a number of items from Amazon in Spain and can’t help but notice that their sales are nowhere near the levels of the UK site. Maybe in time things will change and shops in Spain will start to close as they too find the competition harsh. 

Before that happens though, give Media Markt at La Zenia Boulevard a visit if you are interested in buying a new camera or other items of photographic equipment.

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