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Allen's Radio Service and record shop, Boston, circa 1978. Long-gone traditional electrical shop selling and servicing Hacker, Roberts, Grundig and so on. They also had a small record department overseen by an extraordinarily hard-of-hearing old dear, presumably Mrs Allen, who made special orders quite an ordeal for customers. I bought many punk 45s from here, but the one I remember most is having to spell out the name Springsteen a number of times before she got it on paper. She was eventually replaced by a younger woman, who subsequently opened her own kiosk shop named The Music Box. Despite her very straight appearance, she carried a good stock of fairly left-field post-punk as played by John Peel in the very early '80s, as well as boxes of Northern Soul. A significant source of obscure music in this detached rural area. Comment: Steve Panter

The younger woman was called Pauline. She was very savvy as far as music requirements went. I worked pretty much next door to Allen's and went in daily. Ken Cox used to supply the Northern bootlegs and originals. One day, while looking through the new selection, I came across a copy of Frank Beverly "If that's what you wanted" on Sassy white demo. It was marked up at £5 but Pauline let me have it at cost, the princely sum of £3. Had many a bargain from that shop. Comment: Steve Hanbury.



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Allens 718a Alum Rock Road, Kingstanding,West heath,Sheldon,Castle Bromwich,Erdington,Sutton CoalField

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