Treasured Dublin institution and landmark Walton’s Music Shop is to close because of high city centre rents and competition from on-line shopping.
In 2007, the George’s Street shop appeared in the movie Once when Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová performed the Oscar-winning song Falling Slowly.
“We must have had thousands of people coming in to photograph the piano they played on. In the stage productions they’d mention Walton’s and the Oscars ceremony recreated the interior of the shop for their performance. It was very good publicity but ultimately it wasn’t enough,” said the grandson of Martin Walton, the shop’s original founder Niall Walton.
In 1922, Martin Walton, the grandfather of the current shop owner, Niall Walton, opened the music shop on North Great Frederick Street.
An accomplished violinist and Feis Ceoil winner, he had taken part in the Easter Rising as a teenager, was arrested during the War of Independence and was imprisoned in Ballykinlar internment camp in Co Down. After fighting in the Civil War, he established the Dublin College of Music.
When he opened in 1922 O’Connell Street was in ruins after the civil war. Seven years later came the Wall Street Crash, and in the 1930s De Valera waged a protectionist economic war against Britain, followed by the Second World War.