BBC News reports that the brick studio where gay British composer Benjamin Britten wrote such operas as Death in Venice and Billy Budd has been designated a preserved historical site. The Grade II listing by the U.K. Department for Culture, Media, and Sport will protect the studio, located in Horham, Suffolk, against inappropriate alteration or development. Culture secretary Tessa Jowell said the decision to list the studio was based on its historic, rather than architectural, significance. "Benjamin Britten is without a doubt the greatest English classical composer of the last century," she said. "Britten's music studio, with its view across the beloved Suffolk countryside, is no architectural gem, but its importance as a piece of our cultural heritage cannot be denied."