R.I.P. Simon Yorke Designs (1984-2013)

It is with great sadness and regret that I must announce the end of Simon Yorke Designs as a recordplayer manufacturing company.

I dedicated thirty years of my life (and my son, Spencer, ten years of his) to the task of designing and constructing exemplary recordplayers – in terms of aesthetic pleasure, precision engineering and sound quality.

Over the past thirty years we hand-produced approximately 500 machines for music lovers, broadcasters and National Sound Archives. To the best of my knowledge, the vast majority of these machines still function  perfectly and provide musical pleasure to many, many people.

Those machines working in National Sound Archives continue to contribute to the democratization of our musical heritage by making this history available to millions of interested parties via internet portals. I am especially pround of this, our own small contribution to human society.

However, the woeful decision, in 2008, to save the banks at the expense of the rest of the economy, finally laid waste to our business in 2013.

When currency is no longer utilised for productive means, but for financial speculation by a parasitic financial class, it ceases to circulate in the general economy and instead proceeds directly to the pockets of the 1% who mostly just stash it in offshore tax havens.

So the middle class, the primary consumers of high end audio equipment, are starved of income and eviscerated by excessive levels of taxation imposed by now cash-starved governments. This toxic death spiral forces small businesses in particular to shut up shop and liquidate their productive machinery. Unemployment rises, incomes dwindle, tax revenues fall and the economy is reduced to a ‘needs only’ idle state.

This is precisely what happened to Simon Yorke Designs: we were starved to death by a collapse of demand and exorbitant taxation. We are therefore no longer able to produce or service anything at all. Sadly, it is clear to me that all our governments have been hijacked by financial and corporate interests and, consequently, I now see no likelihood of this economic depression ending other than by monetary collapse or war.

My own response to this thievery and conniving bureaucratic flatulence is to return to previous fields of creativity: painting and writing. For without ‘Art’ I believe we are a lost species, squashed under the bus of history.

Simon Yorke.