Scoring Stages: CTS Studios

CTS Studios
London, England

Cine-Tele Sound Studios Ltd was formed originally in 1956 at Kensington Gardens Square in London's Bayswater district. Smaller than some scoring stages, the convenient location had top sound equipment run by Eric Tomlinson and John Richards. By the 1960s, the studio became a recording spot for composers John Barry, Henry Mancini, Ron Goodwin and Burt Bacharach.

By 1972, CTS moved to the Wembley location (De Lane Lea Music) adjacent to Wembley Stadium - known as The Music Centre. Due to the odd acoustics, the Wembley sound in the 1970s was distinguishable and by the mid-1980s the equipment received an upgrade while the location underwent acoustic renovation. With the redevelopment of Wembley Stadium set to begin in 2000, the studio complex closed and eventually was demolished in 2004.

After the acquisition of CTS Wembley in the late 80s, it became known as CTS Lansdowne. Following the 2000 closing, the CTS staff set up recording at the Watford Colosseum with inaugural scores by Alan Silvestri and Howard Shore (The Mummy Returns and the Lord of the Rings, respectively).  CTS Lansdowne closed its doors in May 2010.

Films scored at CTS Bayswater:
Dr. No (1962) - Monty Norman (including the first recording of the James Bond Theme)
From Russia with Love (1963) - John Barry
Charade (1963) - Henry Mancini
Zulu (1964) - John Barry
A Shot in the Dark (1964) - Henry Mancini
Goldfinger (1964) - John Barry
The Ipcress File (1965) - John Barry
Thunderball (1965) - John Barry
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966) - Stephen Sondheim, Ken Thorne
Casino Royale (1967) - Burt Bacharach
You Only Live Twice (1967) - John Barry

To Sir, With Love (1967) - Ron Grainer
Goodbye Mr Chips (1969) - Leslie Bricusse
On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969) - John Barry
Diamonds are Forever (1971) - John Barry
Frenzy (1972) [rejected] - Henry Mancini

Films scored at CTS Wembley:
The Man with the Golden Gun (1974) - John Barry
The Omen (1976) - Jerry Goldsmith
The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) - Marvin Hamlisch
Superman II (1980) - Ken Thorne
Time Bandits (1981) - Mike Moran
The Secret of NIMH (1982) - Jerry Goldsmith
Superman III (1983) - Ken Thorne
Krull (1983) - James Horner
Octopussy (1983) - John Barry
A Passage to India (1984) - Maurice Jarre
A View to a Kill (1985) - John Barry
Santa Claus the Movie (1985) - Henry Mancini
The Mission (1986) - Ennio Morricone
The Last Emperor (1987) - David Byrne, RyĆ»ichi Sakamoto, Cong Su
Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) - Alan Silvestri
Batman (1989) - Danny Elfman
Henry V (1989) - Patrick Doyle
Year of the Comet (1992) - John Barry
Judge Dredd (1995) - Alan Silvestri
The Phantom (1996) - David Newman
Shakespeare in Love (1998) - Stephen Warbeck
The Cider House Rules (1999) - Rachel Portman
The Legend of Bagger Vance (2000) - Rachel Portman (The last score recorded at Wembley)
Eric Tomlinson at the console, CTS Bayswater

John Barry conducting You Only Live Twice, 1967

John Barry and Nancy Sinatra - You Only Live Twice

John Williams, Petula Clark and Leslie Bricusse behind a row of boys - Goodbye Mr Chips, 1969

Henry Mancini and Hitchcock together on the soon-to-be rejected score, Frenzy, 1972

Wembley exterior, circa 1980s

Wembley interior and the lovely color palette

Richard Band conducting in Wembley

John Barry working on Year of the Comet, Wembley, 1992

Barry outside Wembley, 1992

Liner notes for Legend of Bagger Vance, 2000

Post a Comment


  1. Year of the Comet was released in 1992, not 1982!

  2. Good eye! The typo is now fixed and updated!

  3. My father Peter Wilson worked for CTS/Lansdowne and De-Lane Lea in Bayswater as a film sound camera operator (it was totally his life and he loved it) until it’s unfortunate closure in the early 1990’s which I attended, it was very sad. I spent much time there myself over the years and have many fond memories of it, especially sitting in Studio 1 listening to James Bonds ‘A View To A Kill’ which was amazing (incidentally there is a high hat in the song which made one verse sound like a view to a ‘kilt’ which they couldn’t eradicate but it’s hard to hear unless you’re looking for it!). My father Peter Wilson passed away in November 2016.

  4. ..Note; the chap in the pink shirt behind the desk is the late Dick Lewzey. Also, some of the old staff took over the building before it was demolished and it became Phoenix Sound for a few years after the closure

    1. Dick Lewzey is my brother and is very much alive !

    2. Hello Simon, I am very sorry to hear that your dad Pete has passed on. I worked at cts in the eighties as a receptionist and have great memories of your dad. He was such a lovely person, he was very kind to me and always in great humour.
      May he rest in peace.

  5. Hi, I was simply checking out this blog and I really admire the premise of the article on Music studios in London and this is really informative. . Thanks

  6. Also "A Fish Called Wanda" was scored at CTS Wembley in 1988.

    1. You're right. And they failed to include Paul McCartney and George Martin's music to The Family Way, recorded at Bayswater.

  7. Music to the film The Family Way (Paul McCartney and George Martin) was recorded at Bayswater. I'm amazed it's been overlooked.

  8. John Phillips from The Mamas and Papas recorded in a rush session the score for The Man Who Fell To Earth in 1976 at Wembley after Bowie never finished with his obligation to supply the soundtrack on time. The b-side of Low has long been believed to have been the music hat never made the cut.

  9. Does anyone know who took the picture inside the CTS studio, showing 3 keyboard in the foreground and and pianist playing the grand piano? The picture is titled Richad Band conducting in Wembley? I would love to obtain a copy of the picture as I think the pianist could be my father Leslie Pearson.

  10. Robert Folk recorded Lawnmower Man 2 in 95.

  11. Does anyone know if the music from Yentl was recorded at CTS Wembley ?
    I have found one source that says it was recorded by Keith at Olympic in Barnes but I was certain it was CTS

  12. Francis Monkman's superb score for The Long Good Friday was also recorded at CTS.

    1. The great Harold Fisher was on Drums for that one!

  13. anyone have any info about malcolm mclaren recording tracks for the great rock n roll swindle here?

  14. Does anyone know who might have engineered for the Beatles when they recorded there? Writing a book