Fountain Studios

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Fountain Studios
The Fountain Studios.JPG
Fountain Studios
Fountain Studios is located in Greater London
Fountain Studios
Location within United Kingdom Greater London
General information
Type Television studios
Address 128 Wembley Park Drive,
Wembley,
HA9 8HP
Country England
Coordinates 51°33′40″N 0°16′54″W / 51.5612°N 0.2818°W / 51.5612; -0.2818Coordinates: 51°33′40″N 0°16′54″W / 51.5612°N 0.2818°W / 51.5612; -0.2818
Website
Official Website

Fountain Studios is an independently owned television studio located in Wembley, north-west London, close to Wembley Park underground station.

A number of companies owned the site before it was purchased by Fountain in 1993. Originally a film studio complex, it was formerly the base for the ITV contractors Rediffusion (1955–68) and London Weekend Television (1968-72).

As of 2014, the studios are best known for being the venue for the live stages of ITV shows The X Factor and Britain's Got Talent. Other programmes made at Fountain include The Cube and The British Comedy Awards. Fountain Studios has also hosted Pop Idol, Test the Nation and The Kumars at No. 42.

History[edit]

The site was first owned by British Incorporated Pictures[1] in 1927, but various projects were short-lived and the American Fox Film Company[2] leased the studio for the production of their 'quota quickies' at the facility, prior to acquiring the studio outright in 1936. A change in the law in 1938 led 20th Century Fox to use other studios, but they retained ownership and Fox leased their Wembley studios to the military (during the war) and intermittently to independents.[3]

It was the main production centre for the London weekday ITV contractor Rediffusion from 1955 to the end of the company's franchise in 1968. The studios were home to some of the most popular programmes on the ITV network during the 1960s, including No Hiding Place, The Rat Catchers, Blackmail, At Last, The 1948 Show and The Frost Report.

Whilst under the ownership of London Weekend Television they used to record shows such as On the Buses, Please Sir and Upstairs Downstairs.

Through the 1970s to the 1990s the studios were owned by many companies including Lee International Film and Limehouse Television, until the studios fell into disrepair. When Fountain (which had previously been based in New Malden) purchased the site in 1993 studios 1 to 4 from the original complex were demolished to make way for a retail park and all that remained was Studio 5.

Studio 5 (known as Studio A & Studio B), is 14,000 sq ft including the firelanes. This makes it the largest fully equipped television studio in Britain – 500 sq ft larger than HQ1 at MediaCityUK in Salford and 2,000 sq ft larger than Studio 1 at BBC Television Centre. Internationally, larger studios exist in Germany and in the United States, although many of these fall into the category of soundstages and are not fully equipped television studios.

An unusual feature of the facility is a soundproof double door which can be lowered in 30 minutes to reconfigure the space into two separate studios, each with their own independent control facilities.

Notable programmes[edit]

Fountain Studios is home to many popular entertainment programmes. List of shows, studio used and network broadcast on below: