Real World Studios

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Coordinates: 51°25′08″N 2°15′09″W / 51.4189°N 2.2525°W / 51.4189; -2.2525

Real World Studios

Real World Studios is a residential recording studio founded by Peter Gabriel and situated in the village of Box, Wiltshire, England, near to the city of Bath. It is closely associated with the Real World Records record label and WOMAD music festival.


In 1986, when Peter Gabriel finished the album So, he decided it was time to move from Ashcombe House to a permanent recording facility. Most important for Gabriel was to be close to water. He, David Stallbaumer and Mike Large looked at several sites, mostly old mills, in the Bath area. The Real World site had the size and space they wanted, had a river, was in a beautiful part of the world, and was accessible from London with Bath less than 8 miles (13 km) away.[1]

The 200-year-old Box Mill (also known as Pinchin's Mill) is a water mill on the By Brook. In 1864 it was part of the Box Brewery owned by the Pinchin family who in that year closed their Northgate Brewery at Pulteney Bridge in Bath. In 1867 it was described as a corn mill and malthouse. The mill was bought from Spafax in 1987 by Gabriel. It was converted and an additional building ('The Big Room') was added. The architects were Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios. The new complex provides both studio and accommodation space.[2][3]

Asked who left "the biggest mess" at the studio, Gabriel answered: "Black Grape. They had a lot of parties and a lot of Manchester would come down… and then, mysteriously, half the cars in the village would end up back in Manchester."[4]


The studio's 2,000 sq ft Big Room, houses a mixing console, with additional outboard equipment surrounding the room. The Big Room is designed to be one large collaborative recording space, without dividing walls and also houses two isolation booths. Adjoining the Big Room and within the old mill building is the Wood Room. This room features a more lively acoustic and a booth, mezzanine floor and movable acoustic screens. The rooms can be booked together for a larger recording space, or independently for smaller or lower budget projects.[5]

The Big Room was later equipped to accommodate re-recording mixing for film and television projects. With a foley stage and ADR room, Real World Studios has been host to film and TV projects including Quantum of Solace, The Golden Compass, Green Zone and The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency. The complex also houses a large rehearsal room, a foley studio, surround-sound 7.1 mixing studio with dubbing facilities, kitchen/dining room (with an on-site chef) and accommodation including a production cottage.


Notable clients of Real World Studios include Stereophonics, Seal, James, Reef, Therapy?, Alicia Keys, Amy Winehouse, Placebo, Van Morrison, Beyoncé, Natalie Duncan, Björk, Black Grape, Coldplay, Mumford & Sons, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Paolo Nutini, Robert Plant, The Vamps, Paloma Faith, Rag'n'Bone Man, Tom Jones, New Order, Kasabian, Kylie Minogue, Laura Marling, Pixies, Sade, Sia, Blue October, Harry Styles and Marillion.[6]


  1. ^ "Peter Gabriel's Real World Studios clean up with iZotope's RX". 2015-05-21. Retrieved 2015-10-11.
  2. ^ "Work | View". Retrieved 2 September 2020.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-04-11. Retrieved 2017-04-10.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ Blake, Mark (December 2011). "Cash for questions: Peter Gabriel". Q. p. 46.
  5. ^ "Home". Retrieved 2017-03-17.
  6. ^ "Clients". Real World Studios. Retrieved 2017-12-22.

External links[edit]