BBC puts iconic Maida Vale Studios up for sale

Alt-J at Maida Vale

The BBC has put its iconic Maida Vale Studios up for sale.

The building has been a BBC staple for 86 years, hosting sessions from The BeatlesMorrisseyNirvana and more. It was also the site for Bing Crosby’s last recording session and was home to John Peel’s BBC Radio 1 Peel Sessions. The Fall released full albums of material recorded there.

The studios, which are held in a Grade II listed building, were first converted to studios for radio broadcast in 1934. It was also home to the BBC Symphony Orchestra until 1946. The venue is currently on sale for £10.5million.

In 2018, the BBC said it was planning to move the recording studios to Stratford in 2025, as part of a redevelopment of the Olympic Park. 

“I understand how much our musical heritage at Maida Vale means to us, to artists and to audiences,” the former BBC director general, Tony Hall, said in a note to staff at the time. “We haven’t taken this decision lightly. But we’re determined to ensure that live music remains at the heart of the BBC and moving to this new development gives us the opportunity to do just that.”

A spokesperson for Historic England told the Evening Standard: “In May 2020 the BBC Maida Vale Studios site was listed at Grade II by the Department for Digital Culture Media and Sport, in line with our advice.

“The Maida sale site has a history of conversion and reuse. Built in 1909-1910 as the Maida Vale American Skating Palace and converted by the BBC from 1934, the studios are some of the very earliest for radio broadcast to be established in Britain.

“It is an early and important BBC building, integral to its radio broadcasting since the 1930s, and has an important place in British musical history, having produced some of the world’s most celebrated performers.”

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