Here at Chimes we pride ourselves on being able to provide a dedicated, knowledgable service to all of our customers. We know that whether you are a teacher, novice, parent, choir leader, or a tourist looking for a souvenir, we can help you find what you need in our shops. Even if we don’t have what you need in stock, we regularly order music in from all around the world and can often fulfil customer orders within 3 days. It doesn’t stop at sheet music for us – please see below for additional services offered through our stores.
We provide a highly regarded rental service for children. Although each of our shops holds different instruments in stock, you can come into any of our locations and have your child fitted for standard orchestral instruments such as violin, viola, cello, flute, clarinet, trumpet and more!
It’s always worth phoning ahead to double check we have what you need in order to avoid disappointment on the day. Please note that our Barbican and Kensington shops hold the majority of our rental instruments, but we can still arrange to have instruments sent over to our Academy branch if that is most convenient. Academy Chimes regularly provides rental instruments for Primary Academy and First Strings Experience students from the Royal Academy of Music – this is usually pre-arranged through the Royal Academy itself at the beginning of the academic year.
We rent out both new and ex-rental instruments – rest assured that our ex-rental instruments have always been checked over by a professional, so that we can guarantee they are in good working order. As with all our rental instruments, if you have any problems we can easily exchange them for you.
While you’re here we can advise on any accessories or books that you might need (lots of parents arrive with lists from their teachers!), and we’re pleased to now offer 10% discount on all purchases by our rental customers.
Please see here for further details and a price list. We can order in any of the instruments listed, so if we don’t have it in stock we should be able to source it within 7-10 days. If you have any questions, please contact one of our shops directly:
In addition to this we also offer a classical instrument repair service. We are able to perform basic repairs in-store, including replacing strings on violins, violas, cellos and guitars. Please note that we can only do restrings when a member of staff is available – if it is particularly busy in the shop, you may be asked to return later or the next day to collect your instrument. If you need this work doing urgently, please contact the shop ahead of time in order to make sure we have someone available.
For more serious breakages, or more complicated issues, we have professional repairers to whom we send instruments each week. We have a string luthier who can repair cracks, replace bridges, alter the action, and more – he will need to have your instrument for at least a week and we send out to him on a Monday. We also have a woodwind and brass specialist who we visit multiple times a week. Although he can turn around urgent repairs within a few days, it is hard to guarantee a time-frame as it depends on the complexity of the job. He can also provide a full instrument service if your woodwind or brass instrument is in need of some serious TLC.
Last but not least, we also deliver bows to be rehaired. We visit this repairer on a Wednesday, and be advised that your bow could be gone for 1 -2 weeks, depending on the work necessary.
Please see here for further details. As the repairers work off-site, we are often unable to provide a quotation at the time of taking your instrument in for repair. We are of course happy to provide a quotation before the repairs are made though, once the repairer has checked the instrument to assess what is necessary.