Piccadilly Records

Desmond Bullen
Image of Piccadilly Records on Manchester's Oldham Street
Ben Williams

People of a certain kind remember their first record shop. Encountered in the budding tangle of adolescence, to approach its counters, the object of one’s infatuation pressed into one’s hand, was to feel the same seesaw anxieties as to brave rejection at the school disco. That first purchase was a rite of passage, a kiss that revealed a world that agitated hormones itched to explore. Naturally, those giddy intensities cannot sustain, and, half-forgotten for the instant gratification of the internet or the cheap thrills of the supermarket, some first record shops have died, fondness insufficient to keep their romance alive.

Not so Piccadilly Records. Born with the post-punk big bang in 1978, generations of Mancunians, actual and aspiring, temporary and permanent, have found new ways to fall in love with the doors that it has opened. Originally located off Market Street, it was quick to seize the possibilities in the wake of the other “big bang”, the one of 1996 that rearranged Manchester’s face so violently (clue: the IRA had a hand in it), and relocated to the Northern Quarter where it has pulsated ever since.

Over the decades it has woven itself into the fabric of the city’s music community

So, how has Piccadilly Records kept its spark where so many others have failed? Like all good record shops, it is more than just a location from which actual artefacts can be acquired in an increasingly digital world. It’s no exaggeration to claim that, across the decades, it has woven itself into the fabric of the city’s music community; the records – in whatever format – are merely the most obvious manifestation, but it is also a place where tickets can be bought, flyers can be perused, fanzines can be distributed, discoveries can be made.

Lying a doorstep away from the venues in which bands themselves sound check, socialise, thrill, and sometimes disappoint is a distinct advantage: Night & Day Café, The Castle and Gullivers and many others are reassuringly close by. But laurels are not to be rested upon, and Piccadilly has always been an early adopter. Staff recommendations, an annual “best of” list, in-store reviews, records of the week, a shed-load of vinyl: these are all things that Piccadilly Records has long since traded on. It has embraced the hope of Record Store Day, and though that particular annual event flirts with historical re-enactment, Piccadilly itself seems resolutely forward looking. And its online shop manages to get across the bricks and mortar charm and personality of its real-life venue, winning fans from way past the Northern Quarter’s boundaries. So to say Piccadilly Record prevails, to call it an institution, may be accurate, but it’s also misleading. This is one record shop that is as vital to the music that’s still committed to physical form as the musicians who make it.

53 Oldham StreetManchesterM1 1JR View map
Telephone: 0161 839 8008 Visit Now


No wheelchair access

Admission Charges


Services and Facilities

records, CD's, gift vouchers available, clothing, magazines and books

Opening Hours

  • Monday10:00am - 6:00pm
  • Tuesday10:00am - 6:00pm
  • Wednesday10:00am - 6:00pm
  • Thursday10:00am - 6:00pm
  • Friday10:00am - 6:00pm
  • Saturday10:00am - 6:00pm
  • Sunday11:00am - 5:00pm

Always double check opening hours with the venue before making a special visit.

What's on near Piccadilly Records

Creatures of the Night Comedy Club

An insanely committed seven-nights-a-week, Creatures of the Night Comedy Club opens its doors (20.30-22.30 typically, though please check) for evening after evening of side-splitting comedy.

from £5.00
The Comedy Vault

Every Monday night upstairs at Fierce Bar, The Comedy Vault hosts an outrageously funny open-mic night. Come and try your hand or just to watch and laugh.

free entry
Killer Comedy Club

Killer Comedy Club showcases “the UK’s best upcoming and coming comedians” for a night of roof-raising laughs, with pop-up nights all across the North West.

from £12
Un-Convention Manchester 2024

Un-Convention is the ultimate independent music industry conference and showcase taking place at Band on the Wall in Manchester this November.

Blondshell at Band on the Wall

“An alt-rock star is born” said The Guardian upon the release of Blondshell’s debut album last year, which she’s bringing to Manchester this summer.

Where to go near Piccadilly Records

Vinyl Exchange

Vinyl Exchange is the largest seller and buyer of rare and second-hand records, CDs and DVDs in the North West.

Cass Art Manchester

Primely located on Oldham Street in the Northern Quarter, Cass Art Manchester offers a vast selection of high-quality art materials at affordable prices.

Image of Night and Day Cafe in Manchester
Music venue
Night & Day Cafe

Opened in 1991, Night & Day Cafe on Oldham Street plays host to an exhausting array of gigs throughout the year.

tours and activities
Bird and Blend Tea Co.

Bird and Blend is Tea Blending heaven, located in the heart of the Northern Quarter with new flavours being created all the time.

COW Vintage Manchester

COW Vintage, once on Piccadilly Place, now on Church Street in Manchester’s Northern Quarter is a beautifully decorated vintage clothes shop.


Barbarella is a barber shop and part of the long-standing Pop Boutique vintage shop.

Image of Pop Boutique's shop front on Oldham Street in Manchester
Pop Boutique Manchester

One of the oldest vintage shops in the Northern Quarter (opened here in 1994), Pop is set out across two floors and racks up a cafe, barber’s and basement furniture section, as well as its own label and good-as-new originals – all for very reasonable prices.

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