Leeds music venue The Cockpit closes

The Cockpit Leeds

Renowned Leeds music venue, The Cockpit, has closed.

The club shut up shop back in July to carry out “essential maintenance work”, but the owners have now revealed that the state of the premises means that they won’t be reopening.

A statement on The Cockpit’s official website reads: “After 20 great years as a pillar of the Leeds music scene, we have decided it is no longer viable to deliver the level of service you deserve, with the building in its current condition.”

“We’d like to thank every one of you who came to watch your favourite bands, found your life partners and gave The Cockpit its reputation as one of the best live music venues in the UK.”

All the concerts that had already been booked at the venue are being re-scheduled at other locations, with Cockpit tickets remaining valid.

The news comes in the wake of the closure of other Leeds venues such as Queen’s Hall and Rio’s. The Empress in Bradford also recently closed, and The Snooty Fox in Wakefield is fighting for it’s financial future.

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Twitter #Music service set to close

Tiwtter Music IconTwitter #Music, the music discovery service launched by Twitter in 2013, is set to close.

The service was specifically designed to allow users to keep a close eye on the artists, bands and musicians being discussed on the social network, with individual tracks also being recommended based on who users followed. Songs could then be streamed via the iTunes, Spotify and Rdio music streaming services.

The service and it’s associated app have failed to take off however, and Twitter has announced that the service will cease on April 18th, one year after it’s launch. The app has already been removed from the iOS App Store.

Speaking prior to Twitter #Music’s launch in 2013, Stephen Philips of Twitter was optimistic of the services chances, stating that half of all network’s users follow at least one musician. However, the founder of the app, Kevin Thau, left the company one week after it launched.

Twitter have stated that they will “…continue to experiment with new ways to bring you great content based on the music activity we see every day on Twitter.”

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Play.com to close retail arm

Online RetailPlay.com has announced that it will be closing its retail business in March of this year. The online entertainment retailer will instead focus on its marketplace offering and will no longer sell directly to customers.

The company, based in Jersey, has blamed the closure of the Low Value Consignment Relief tax loophole that allowed it to sell items of less than £15 to the UK VAT-free. The law was changed by the government in April 2012.

A total of 241 staff will be made redundant across the company’s Jersey, Cambridge and Bristol offices.

In a statement Play.com said: “”Moving forward we are intending to focus exclusively on our successful marketplace, which is our main business area, and to phase out the direct-retail part of our business.”

Play.com was taken over by Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten in September 2011. It paid £25m ($39.3m) for Play.com, which had 14million registered users at the time.