Established for over 30 years, we have seen the industry grow and technologies evolve, and we are committed to adapting to these changes.

Our purpose built facilities, expert insight, professionally active tutors and creative partnerships enable us to offer the most up to date and relevant training, and provide you with real career opportunities.

We are proud to have helped hundreds of our graduates achieve their dream job – don’t take our word for it, take a look at our success stories.

"3sixtymedia is the resource arm of the BBC and Granada based in Manchester. We produce television programmes such as Jeremy Kyle, Coronation Street and Mastermind. Staff at SSR are active in nurturing a growing relationship with 3sixtymedia and we are extremely happy to be a creative partner... it is increasingly important to allow students to gain an understanding of a wider industry they may have known little about."

Mike Hayes
Audio Operations Manager, 3sixty media


SSR was founded by current CEO John Breakell and began life as Spirit Studios in 1980. Located on Tariff Street, Manchester, Spirit was a small complex comprising of 4 small rehearsal rooms and a single 4-track recording studio.

The Smiths were the first band through Spirit’s doors, and other rising bands of the time followed, including The Stone Roses, Simply Red, Happy Mondays, 808 State and New Order. Bill Wyman paid a visit, as did the legendary Tony Wilson and many other famous faces. The Stone Roses recorded in Spirit Studios the demo tape that secured their first record deal.

In 1984, recognising an increasing demand for professionally trained sound engineers within the music industry, Spirit Studios became the School of Sound Recording, the first audio engineering and music production school in the UK, and one of the first in the world.

The School of Sound Recording quickly gained a healthy reputation within the music industry for producing well trained, professional graduates and the business thrived and continued to grow through the 80’s and into the 90’s, offering new courses and moving into a wider range of subject areas. (We even made it into popular literature: The Stone Roses and the Resurrection of British Pop by John Robb, and The Stone Roses, War and Peace by Simon Spence.)

In 2004, we outgrew the Tariff St site and relocated to our current premises in Ardwick, on the edge of the city centre, and shortly after the relocation began offering degree courses with our university partners. By this time, the company was known simply as ‘SSR’ to reflect the changing breadth of our courses and delivery.

In 2009, SSR was recognised with a Manchester Evening News ‘Business of The Year’ award, and embarked on the first steps to expanding the company into new countries and territories.

SSR Manchester now serves as SSR’s global HQ, with SSR London and SSR Jakarta both opening in 2011. Further SSR centres are also in development.
Industry partners

What our students say -

"The sound engineering and design course was exactly what I needed to prepare for and kick start my career in game audio. The diverse selection of modules and assignments greatly increased my understanding of audio techniques and applications across a wide spectrum of roles, from sound design and composition to audio restoration and mastering. I was able to use the knowledge I gained to become very flexible in my job, which is vital for working in games. Every day you encounter a different challenge and thanks to SSR I am able to deal with them efficiently and to a high standard. I’d like to thank SSR’s lecturers for sharing their audio production techniques as well as being great mentors who helped me every step of the way. Also a very special thanks to Norbert Weiher for teaching me how to mix and edit post production projects quickly to broadcast standard."

Ashley Read
Sound Engineering & Design BSc (Hons) / FdSc

Manchester's Spirit Studios Discography

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