Former home of Beatles album cover designer for sale in Islington


The former home of a leading British Pop artist who designed album covers for the Beatles has come up for sale for £4 million.

Gordon House was living in the Victorian villa in Islington when he worked with his friend Peter Blake on the cover art for Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

He also controversially added ‘The Beatles’ in embossed lettering on the front cover of the White Album, to the chagrin of designer Richard Hamilton, who had intended for the sleeve to be entirely blank aside from a serial number.

Peter Blake said: “There are very few artists who are equally comfortable and talented at being both a painter and graphic designer and Gordon House was one such.

Olly Hewitt
Olly Hewitt

“We often worked together as designers, notably when I did the front cover of the LP by the Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and Gordon was responsible for the typography on the back of the record.

“He went on to work on the White Album for the Beatles with Richard Hamilton, then on further Beatles recordings and, later, most of Paul McCartney’s records.”

A thank you note to House from Paul and Linda McCartney was sold at Christie’s for £660 along with House’s copy of the White Album.

The property’s current owner, tech entrepreneur Alexis Richardson, also said the bathroom inspired Norwegian Wood after House’s wife lined it with Nordic wood panels.

Olly Hewitt
Olly Hewitt

House’s daughter, Joanna Marks, remembers musicians coming to visit when she was growing up. She said she was aware “that it was a very big deal and we shouldn’t tell our friends at school in case they came hunting for autographs.”

The eight-bedroom end-of-terrace house, on the market with Savills, is on the same street as the former Wessex Sound Studios, owned by Beatles producer Sir George Martin, where everyone from the Rolling Stones and David Bowie to Madonna and Prince recorded.

Douglas Adams, author of the Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy also lived in a flat on the street.


Richardson, who currently lives in with his wife and daughter, says the creative history was a part of the property’s appeal when he bought it.

“The house was full of famous people when House lived there. It definitely attracted us to buy it, it made the area feel very cool. We keep a copy of the White Album in the kitchen, we were given it by someone who was so excited when he stayed here he said we had to have a copy.

“We looked at hundreds of houses in north London and in the end we loved this one, it’s so different to all the terraced houses we saw. It’s an end-of-terrace, south facing and we just love the space and light.”

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