Business of the week: Alan’s Records in East Finchley, whose youngest customer is eight

Alan Dobrin at his shop Alan's Records, East Finchley, which is still going strong after 24 years. P

Alan Dobrin at his shop Alan's Records, East Finchley, which is still going strong after 24 years. Picture: POLLY HANCOCK - Credit: Archant

Alan’s Records in East Finchley opened its doors in 1994 and now features in a guide to the top 80 record emporia around the globe.

Alan's Records in East Finchley. Picture: Emily Webber

Alan's Records in East Finchley. Picture: Emily Webber - Credit: Archant

Alan Dobrin, 55, opened his shop in the Great North Road 24 years ago. After a friend asked him to sell some vinyl at a car boot sale, he decided to go full time and turn his passion for records into a source of income.

He credits legendary Radio 1 presenter John Peel with switching him on to music.

The shop is now home to about 15,000 records, covering everything from reggae to rock. Needless (needles?) to say, his prized possession – a copy of The Beatles’ White Album worth nearly £10,000 – isn’t for sale.

Despite his impressive inventory and quarter of a century’s experience, Alan’s modest about his expertise.

Alan's Records in East Finchley. Picture: Emily Webber

Alan's Records in East Finchley. Picture: Emily Webber - Credit: Archant


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“My customers teach me everything about music,” he laughed. “I’m not even very good on the music round in pub quizzes!”

His youngest customer is eight years old.

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