Feb 05

Harrods Close Piano Department

In a very sad bit of news, Harrods have closed the lid on their last grand piano as they announce the closure of their piano department. While they were never the only place to buy a piano, it’s a sign of the decline in need for these beautiful instruments. Harrods sold pianos for over a hundred years, but the fact that cheaper and lighter and more transportable digital models are now at crazily low prices, added to the fact that a piano owner can not escape; pianos need care and take up lots of space, has meant that stocking them was no longer a sensible financial consideration, and so, they are pulling down the curtain on 118 years of piano selling history.


Piano at Hotel Beatriz

According to The Times, the pianist Alberto Semprini was associated with the stores piano department in his day, and it’s understood Cliff Richards was also a customer.



Luckily for anybody searching for a piano in London, Steinway are a stones throw away and are still produced to the very high standards set by their Hamburg factory. Yamaha pianos are also sold in most of the major music shops with the confusingly named Chappell Of Bond Street (actually it’s on Wardour Street!) being a premium show room for their range of excellent instruments and they often host free lunchtime concerts if you are in the area. In fact the UK is still very well catered for if you want a real living version of my favourite instrument, but do you really need to buy new when so many pianos are simply abandoned or dumped.

I know it’s a big responsibility to bother with the proper upkeep of a real piano. The tuning, regulating, temperature control etcetera, but none of them deserve the treatment doled out on them on programs like Top Gear. I confess I have to turn away when another Morris Marina is flattened by one. I’m sure I share the more popular view that they should be using more caravans for this job.

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