Home Articles Downloads Forum Products Services Seminar Contact
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Rate Thread
Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4
Maplin #72863
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Online content OP
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Online Content OP
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden

I'm starting to feel my age. I can remember the small Maplin shop at Burnt Oak, Edgware.

Back in those days you could pick up some useful (and "competitively priced") bits and pieces in there. But that would have been (in my case) 26 years ago.

Unfortunately, I never visited the original shop in Southend-on-Sea (where the name, from the Maplin Sands mudflats, came from); but I remember their magazine adverts.

The last time I went into a Maplin store would have been nine years ago in Doncaster. They had a flashy (big) place there ... full of over-priced stuff that I didn't want; but hardly anything of the things I actually needed (what we might call "service consumables").

Thinking about it, I may have called in at their place in Stevenage since then (but still a few years ago); nice for a browse around, but not much else.

Following the demise of Maplin, hopefully a new "back to basics" business will emerge. Or better still, a string of small local independents.

Meanwhile, any bets being placed on "who's next"? How about Halfords? frown

Re: Maplin [Re: Geoff Hannis] #72864
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 48
England
D
Dustcap Offline
Technologist
Dustcap  Offline
Technologist
D

Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 48
England
RIP London road Maplin in Westcliff, Southend. Yes the original first store and the size of garage. When i was studying electronics all those years ago, we would often "need to visit Maplins" for a component, it had nothing to do with the variety take aways located nearby or the very good army surplus shop just further up the road.
But it was better than Tandy.
However it did go a bit strange when they tried to compete with the likes of the gadget shop and began selling everything and anything, normally powered by solar energy?
Buy your Polymorph now!!!
There were some very helpful staff in the many stores but the majority could not help when requesting components, they would invariably go on the website in store, then the internal site and come back with nothing. Best plan was to find the oldest person (normally bearded) and ask them.
RIP high street.


30 years since the Chernobyl disaster and yet we still have no super heroes or zombies.
Re: Maplin [Re: Geoff Hannis] #72865
Joined: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,344
Wales
Huw Online content

Hero
Huw  Online Content

Hero

Joined: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,344
Wales
I used to use Maplin's mail order service back in the '80's for my earliest hobby electronics projects. I seem to remember their prices being quite fair and they sold virtually everything you needed. I must have spent a small fortune at the time - such was my geekiness (enthusiasm?)
I remember ordering some components around 4pm one day and they were delivered before I went to work the next day. (Normal postage.)

Quite sad to hear of their imminent demise. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-43223175

Re: Maplin [Re: Huw] #72866
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Online content OP
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Online Content OP
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden

I wonder how and where they are going to sell off their remaining stock (presumably at "fire sale" prices)? think

Originally Posted by Dustcap

RIP high street.


Maybe it deserves to die; you can travel around England and sometimes forget where you are. Just the same names, and often the same poor service, wherever you go.

Let it be reborn with local shops run by small local businessmen. smile

Where I am at the moment, apart from the usual charity shops, takeaway joints and the odd convenience* store, I would say that only about 10% of shops are vacant. However, I have noticed quite a high turnover of enthusiastic start-ups (many, it has to be said, disappear after only six months). Not actually "thriving", but not really "dying" either (not yet, anyway). Rents (and possibly Business Rates) are the killer, apparently.

On the other hand, there is a large Tesco supermarket within walking distance (but M&S is one of those listed for closure - not that I've ever been in there).

But the Good News is that there is a "traditional" (junk shop, Aladdin's cave, car-boot sale under a single roof) electronics shop about five hundred yards away from me at the moment. The bloke has been hanging in there thirty years, and deals in second-hand, "surplus", gear like old PC's. Ideal for me. I have even shifted some of my own surplus stuff in there!

On the other hand, at the Retail Park on the edge of town (home of McD, Aldi and similar), there is a large Currys PC World (or whatever they call it these days). Last time I wandered in there for a browse I was intercepted by a young "Here to Help" person who, as I quickly established, knew next to nothing, and (worse still in my opinion) seemed completely disinterested anyway. Another place that won't be missed, then. whistle

* Most of which are supplied by the Big Names (Tesco, Morrisons et al, apparently)

Re: Maplin [Re: Huw] #72867
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Online content OP
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Online Content OP
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden

I see that the CEO is blaming Brexit. frown

That's not among the reasons that I would have listed. But there again, he didn't ask me. whistle

Meanwhile, this is the future, apparently. As usual, the Comments section is the most informative.

(not that you'll ever see me in a place like that, of course)

Re: Maplin [Re: Geoff Hannis] #72868
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 48
England
D
Dustcap Offline
Technologist
Dustcap  Offline
Technologist
D

Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 48
England
I always like asking the ever so eager staff in Currys about radiation leakage alarms on microwaves. Gets them every time.


30 years since the Chernobyl disaster and yet we still have no super heroes or zombies.
Re: Maplin [Re: Dustcap] #72869
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Online content OP
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Online Content OP
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden

I was genuinely interested in (as in, "ready to buy") a new UPS for one of my computer rigs.

Not one of the (half-dozen or so) Eager Beavers in Currys PC World knew what I was talking about.

OK, they were all "young", maybe on Minimum Wage (more than me, then) or - for all I know - "zero hour contracts" ...

[Linked Image]

... when I was their age (and even now), I would take pride in "knowing my brief"; and if I didn't know something, I would darn well find out!

And therefore be able to "Meet And Greet" (and who knows, even impress) old sods like myself with new-found knowledge when (or if) I next appeared! smile

@Huw: I doubt that Mrs. Evans would have been too impressed with that last sentence! tut

Re: Maplin [Re: Dustcap] #72870
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Online content OP
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Online Content OP
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden

Originally Posted by Dustcap

RIP London road Maplin in Westcliff, Southend. Yes the original first store and the size of garage.


If I remember rightly, the early Maplin adverts (in electronics hobbyist magazines) made a play about Maplin being "the site of the Third London Airport" ... yet here we are, still waiting. frown

Southend was also the home of Solidisk Technology; I visited those "genius guys" back in 1986 (Sweyne Avenue, IIRC) - and still around, not far away, apparently.

Not so sure about Watford Electronics in, er, Watford, though. frown

Re: Maplin [Re: Geoff Hannis] #72871
Joined: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,344
Wales
Huw Online content

Hero
Huw  Online Content

Hero

Joined: Jun 2000
Posts: 2,344
Wales
Originally Posted by Geoff Hannis

Not one of the (half-dozen or so) Eager Beavers in Currys PC World knew what I was talking about.

It's always been like that in PC World.
However, the guys in Maplins were generally (in my experience) quite knowledgeable.

Re: Maplin [Re: Huw] #72872
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden
Geoff Hannis Online content OP
Super Hero
Geoff Hannis  Online Content OP
Super Hero

Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 13,737
the path less trodden

When I was "on the road", I used to call in at quite a few Maplin stores, here and there - mainly to top up on "service consumables".

To be honest, I found the staff to be "variable"; but there again, I don't much like being pestered when out shopping.

At Doncaster (referred to earlier), there was an "older guy" who always used to welcome me, and I enjoyed talking with him. But, as for the younger ones, I don't remember getting much joy from them. Maybe it's just an age (generational) thing. smile

And I guess I missed the (endless) glasses of sweet chai I used to get in the souks.

Originally Posted by Huw

I used to use Maplin's mail order service back in the '80's for my earliest hobby electronics projects.


Maybe they should have stuck to mail order (and now, of course, on line), and selling components, kits, tools, test gear, and books. No need for large stores scattered around the country; they could have stayed in Southend! smile

Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4

Moderated by  DaveC in Oz, KM, RoJo 

Who's Online Now
6 registered members (Huw, Neil Porter, Geoff Hannis, raysoler, Spidey, Rallium), 182 guests, and 34 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
raysoler, myas27, chamakmaira, Jonko, Santa Gurin
9407 Registered Users
Events
Philips - National Conference
SCCT Study Day
Welch Allyn - Completing The Picture
Forum Statistics
Forums25
Topics10,380
Posts70,408
Members9,407
Most Online1,391
Mar 26th, 2018
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.1