Mary McCartney says her mother’s presence is ‘scattered throughout the Abbey Road document’

Mary McCartney has said her late mother, Linda, inspired her documentary about Abbey Road Studios – and her presence was “scattered” there.

The 53-year-old photographer and filmmaker, daughter of Beatles star Sir Paul, made what is billed as the “first feature-length documentary” on the world-renowned studios.

If These Walls Could Sing features interviews with those at the center of its long history, from Sir Elton John to Chic’s Nile Rodgers and newcomer Celeste.

Linda died of breast cancer in 1998 aged 56 and Mary, who was often taken to the studios as a child, was inspired to work on the project by a photograph of her mother driving a pony through the nearby zebra crossing.

Speaking from the Gatehouse studio in Abbey Road, she told the PA News Agency: “My mum is such an inspiration and I love seeing her. She’s kind of scattered throughout the documentary. She loved the space here.

“Things that I hadn’t realized…something that’s not in the documentary but someone was saying…she would come and say sometimes, ‘Look, Paul and I are dating – could someone please babysit?’ And that shows how comfortable she was.

“When I started doing this project, people would pull me aside and say, ‘We remember your mom came here and she was so great with everyone,’ and affection for her. She is definitely a source of inspiration for the documentary.

Mary McCartney directed the feature documentary (Grace Guppy/PA)

Mary said she wanted to prove that the studios are more than just The Beatles.

The Fab Four recorded most of their music at the resort, which recently celebrated its 90th anniversary, but Pink Floyd, Fela Kuti, Kate Bush and Oasis also worked there.

“People think it’s The Beatles, but it’s also so much more, and that’s what I wanted to show,” she said.

Mary highlighted the wide range of genres recorded in the space, from classical to pop and soul.

She added, “It’s all encompassing and it’s a place where an artist can come and feel safe. You are just here to do your best.

“What I learned about recording studios is that you can come somewhere, you can close the doors, you can close the outside world and create. I think that’s why a lot of the music that comes out here is so successful.

On Monday evening, the UK premiere of If These Walls Could Sing took place in Abbey Road, with many space-related stars in attendance.

The film will stream on Disney+ in the UK from January 6.

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