A GUITAR shop in York city-centre is expanding into larger premises in a move that will also lead to a new restaurant being created.
MOR Music will move later this month into a building in Franklin's Yard, behind its current shop in 31 Fossgate.
The move will also see the creation of new new rehearsal studious; guitar, bass, drum and vocal tuition; professional guitar and amp repairs and an expanded events management and promotions arm.
The current shop is set to be turned into a restaurant by Ambiente Tapas, subject to a licensing hearing on Thursday. The company already has a restaurant in Goodramgate and is opening a second branch, with seating for 120 diners and a bar for 30.
Phil & Lynne O’Dea, owners of MOR Music, told The Press: “We’ve finally found the perfect premises for our future plans for MOR Music & we’re particularly excited about the addition of our brand new rehearsal studios.
"We have a brilliant team which includes some great local musicians in our sales team, along with some of the best music tutors in York & we’re delighted to be fulfilling our dreams of becoming the one-stop-shop for musicians.”
The expansion is the second in less than four years for MOR Music. The firm was founded in 1985 and moved into its current premises from a smaller shop at the top of Fossgate in 2011.
Its new premises will include two new themed boutique showrooms for acoustic and electric guitars, along with specialist sound-proofed tuition rooms.
Tutors will include Rob Wilson Guitar Tuition, Liam Hardy at York Drum Lessons, and vocal tutor Lucy McLean from LJC Studios.
The company organised music events including the York 800 MOR Music Festival for more than 5,000 people in Parliament Street and also the upcoming Music On Rails Festival at the National Railway Museum on September 6.
On the back of those, a specialist events management, bookings and promotions company will be based at the new complex and will provide a range of acts and bands for parties, weddings and corporate events.
Fittings for the new showrooms and studios have been recycled or bought locally. Local cafes Fossgate Social and Spring Espresso provided hessian coffee bean sacks for use as ceiling coverings in the acoustic guitar showroom and Phil and Lynne said local tradesmen were being used to keep as much money as possible in the local economy.
Local design company Rose Bullet Studios is also involved in the project and a stage and seating have been built from reclaimed scaffold boards in the acoustic showroom, which will host live acoustic gigs and album launches.
The electric guitar showroom will include original photography by York-based Rock n Roll photographer Ami Barwell, including life size black and white prints of Johnny Marr, Lenny Kravitz and Steve Vai.
Demonstration days and a Rickenbacker guitar weekend for collectors from around the UK are also planned.