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Vinyl music shop owner records win in start-up business competition

Photo: 2022 Dyer’s Den winner Will Madden (right), owner of Smithfield records with Dyer’s Den organiser Jed Eatough of LSGK Accountants (Photo by Mark Brammar)

The Dyer’s Den competition for start-up entrepreneurs in Staffordshire Moorlands has been won by a vinyl record shop owner who started his business just a few months ago.Will Madden, 24, owner of Smithfield Records based in the Smithfield Centre in Leek, beat off stiff competition and impressed the judges to scoop a prize package valued at over £4000. Now in its fourth year, Dyer’s Den is the idea of Jed Eatough, director of Leek based LSGK Accountants Ltd and is supported by partners and sponsors Staffordshire Moorlands District Council, Staffordshire Moorlands Chamber of Commerce, Tinsdills Solicitors, The Capture Factory, Churnet Sound Radio, Cathy Bower Photography and Mark Brammar Associates.The first prize is made up of £750 in cash, mentoring, legal and financial help and advice, membership of the Chamber of Commerce, a website MOT, radio advertising and photography.Competition winner Will Madden said: “I have had a passion for vinyl since I was a teenager and started to sell records online during lockdown. I was planning to open a shop a couple of years ago, but Covid and lockdown came along, and my plans were put on ice. Everything finally came together earlier this year, and I opened the shop in August.  There is a growing market for vinyl records, and I have customers from teenagers to pensioners who call in to buy, browse or have a coffee and a chat.“I sell a range of new and used vinyl, CDs and cassettes at the shop and online and I have plans to run live music and DJ events soon. Winning the Dyer’s Den competition will provide me with the expert knowledge and practical tools to build my business. Dyer’s Den has put me in touch with people who have years of business experience, and I am really looking forward to tapping into their expertise.”Jed Eatough added: “Will stood out from the competition due to his enthusiasm and determination to make his business work. The judges all agreed that he had made a great start to his business and that he would benefit tremendously from the prize package to take him to the next level.”The runners up were Moorlands Lawn Care and Sam Hughes Counselling who receive £500 and £250 cash prizes respectively.


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