Friday 15 January 2016

Quintain gobbles up another chunk of Wembley as Fountain Studios sold off

Fountain Studios, Wembley Park Road

Local landmark Fountain Studios has been sold to Quintain for £16m. The studios have been used for Britain's Got Talent and the X Factor and excited queues of fans, some on step ladders to see over the fence, are a familiar sight in Wembley.

In the year to the end of September,  Fountain made a loss of £300k on sales of £5.3m, around 4% of the parent company, Avesco's, turnover.

It is likely that the Studios will eventually close with the loss of local jobs, although it is reported that a leaseback agreement has been agreed for a unspecified period. Presumably that will enable the Studios to fulfill any contracts already signed.  Local businesses, including restaurants and pubs, will also lose out with the loss of custom from the production audiences.

Quintain is likely to build housing on the site with some retail on the lines of the ALTO development further down the road.  Given the location and Quintain's aims to maximise profits these are highly unlkely to be social housing.

Quintain itself was taken over the Texan Lone Star Real Estate last year for £745m.


Philip Grant said...

Sad news, and another part of Wembley's varied history soon to disappear. People have been making films at this site since the 1920's, and TV programmes here since the birth of Independent Television in the mid-1950's.

And what will we have instead? Probably yet another high-rise block of private flats. Yes, people need homes to live in - but what about quality of life?


Philip Grant said...


I have heard from one of the staff at Fountain Studios that they are being made redundant at Christmas 2016. Presumably the timing for this is to allow for the next series of The X Factor to be screened live from there, as in previous years.

As the X Factor finalists are asked to perform and record a song that Simon Cowell hopes will become the Christmas No. 1 single, perhaps the 2016 number should be "I'm being sacked this Christmas"!