Monday, November 07, 2005

THE CITY OF DISAPPEARING CULTURE

In yesterday's pop papers, we touched on how the vibrant music culture of Liverpool was being literally pushed out by property development off the back of the City of Culture win which, of course, was built on that selfsame culture.

It turns out things are worse than we thought, as one of major beacons of Merseyside creativity, the Parr Street Studios, are being threatened with closure. The studios - where, amongst other albums, Coldplay's Parachutes, X and Y, and A Rush of Blood To The Head were recorded - are facing the axe because the landlords want to turn the buildings into expensive flats.

Who are the landlords? Hit and Run. Who they? Phil Collins, Mike Rutherford and Tony Banks. Yes, Genesis are threatening to throw the only decent studio in central Liverpool out of business, along with the management, design and other companies that have found a home in the complex.

Among the other businesses based at the Parr Street site is Porcupine Music, a management company which looks after legendary Liverpool band Echo and the Bunnymen, among others.

Company director Peter Byrne said: "It would be disastrous coming up to Capital to Culture if there were no studios of this standard in the city.

"This is a genuine piece of Liverpool history here. People are really angry but how can we tell the people who own the building what to do with it."


Well, for a start, the council could make it clear to Collins and his chums that there's no way they will ever be allowed to build flats on the site. Perhaps the council could do something to take control of the building? After all, they're happy enough to slap compulsary purchase orders onto buildings when its making their friend the Duke of Westminster happy - perhaps its time they did something for the people who actually live and work in the city?

[Thanks to John D for the link]


3 comments:

jona said...

I couldn't help a smirk at this line: "major beacons of Merseyside creativity, ... where, amongst other albums, Coldplay's Parachutes, X and Y, and A Rush of Blood To The Head were recorded".

This is sad news though, but probably something that's been on the cards for a while - a couple of years ago the bar and kitchen area were 'separated' from the studio and opened to the public, meaning artists didn't even have anywhere to eat in peace, and late-night sessions aren't possible due to complaints from guests in the hotel on the top floor.

ian said...

If it stops another coldplay album, then this can only be a good thing.

Anonymous said...

Don’t believe everything you read in the papers, that journalist needs to read the application to see that adding flats is only one part of the application.

I am still taking bookings for 2005/6

I think you’ll find that bands that want privacy while eating their dinner can use the boardroom, or even the dining area on the hotel floor if someone wanted to be really private

Studios 1 and 2 are available to work 24 hour a day, the only curfew is on studio 3 as it’s right under the accommodation and has a shut off time of 2am which has been the case for the 12 years that that room has been operating

Hope this has cleared a few thing up

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