The idyllic English property where Oasis recorded their Definitely Maybe album is on sale for offers over $2.9 million. The historic creekside recording studio in Cornwall also provided inspiration for Kenneth Grahame’s classic novel The Wind in the Willows.
Opened in 1974 as one of the UK’s first residential recording facilities, the Sawmills Studi0, which played a role in the 1990s British pop scene, is where Oasis recorded their 1994 debut album Definitely Maybe. Other clients include The Stone Roses and Britpop bands such as Supergrass, The Bluetones, and Ocean Colour Scene.
Since it opened almost 50 years ago, The Sawmills Studio, which has been described as “legendary” by the media, has attracted artists such as Robert Plant and bands such as Muse, who recorded several albums there including Showbiz and Origin of Symmetry. Now this piece of musical history is on sale for offers over $2.9 million.
The world-famous recording facility has a romantic and tucked-away location in south Cornwall, set on its own private creek off the River Fowey between Fowey and Golent. It sits 32 acres of private woodland and is only accessible by boat–via an opening in the embankment between the creek and the River Fowey–and the Saints Way footpath, which runs through its land. The town of Fowey is just over a mile away by boat.
According to selling agent Richard Speedy of Strutt & Parker, owner Dennis Smith, a music business mentor who co-founded the studio, is selling the property as he is reaching retirement age. “The interest in the property is a 50-50 split between people who are intrigued by its musical history and recording studio facilities and high-net-worth individuals who are interested in its discreet location,” says Speedy.
The Sawmills Studio lies in a 7-bedroom 17th-century house converted from a timber mill known as The Old Sawmills in grounds that feature a two-bedroom lodge, lawned gardens that run down to the creek, which is known as Bodmin Pill, two private pontoons, established woodland, and two outbuildings. It also comes with mooring rights on the Fowey Estuary, which is difficult to obtain, according to the sales details.
The main house has both period and modern features, all of its bedrooms apart from one has creek views, and it features a conservatory opening on a terrace–both of which look over its lawn gardens, woodland, and the creek. The stream and waterfall on the creek, meanwhile, offers the calming sound of running water.
In the early 20th century, author Kenneth Grahame regularly visited nearby Fowey and it is widely accepted that the River Fowey was the inspiration for his book The Wind in the Willows. The Old Sawmills is the likely source of inspiration for the setting of Ratty and Mole’s first picnic outing in the first chapter where they picnic off a main river by a mill. According to the sales details by Strutt & Parker, the agency selling the home, “there is only one creek with a water mill in that locality, Bodmin Pill, and the description fits perfectly and has changed very little, apart from the water wheel and the colour of the paintwork.”
The site of the property, which dates back to the Domesday Book, was used by the medieval merchants of Bodmin who chose this location as a preferred landing point from the sea to avoid paying landing fees upriver at Lostwithiel, the ancient capital of Cornwall, according to the sales details. The remains of a medieval-era quay are visible at the head of the Bodmin Pill creek.
During World War I, the woodland that surrounds the buildings was coppiced for timber that was used to make trenches on the Western Front. In 1943, The Old Sawmill was requisitioned by the US Army for preparations in the run-up to the D-Day landings and its billeted soldiers created a hydroelectric scheme to provide heating and lighting at the property, according to its sales details.
The home is on sale with Strutt & Parker for offers over $2.9 million