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#1 Contra Posaune

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 10:09 PM

Over the years I have met and befriended a great many organists, of all 'shapes and sizes', but the one thing I have often discovered about them is a passion for all things steam-driven. Of course, we all know of clerical gentlemen (Bishop Treacy being the greatest of all) who take an interest in such things, but what about the rest of us? There must be many others; I certainly know that Adrian Self of Cartmel Priory shares my enthusiasm for steam. Perhaps it's the sheer majesty of power and noise, something common to the organ in the right context! And it's a living thing, as a good organ can be.

I can understand those who stand on platforms taking numbers (all deference to them if that's their scene) but those who know about Gresley's Conjugated Valvegear, or the thrill of seeing a big engine at night when she's at full chat and throwing sparks, they are the ones to whom I equate!

And model engineering is common as well. Alan Taylor of capture-actions fame is a member of our local club, so anyone else out there with these interests?

CP

#2 Colin Richell

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 10:36 PM

Over the years I have met and befriended a great many organists, of all 'shapes and sizes', but the one thing I have often discovered about them is a passion for all things steam-driven. Of course, we all know of clerical gentlemen (Bishop Treacy being the greatest of all) who take an interest in such things, but what about the rest of us? There must be many others; I certainly know that Adrian Self of Cartmel Priory shares my enthusiasm for steam. Perhaps it's the sheer majesty of power and noise, something common to the organ in the right context! And it's a living thing, as a good organ can be.

I can understand those who stand on platforms taking numbers (all deference to them if that's their scene) but those who know about Gresley's Conjugated Valvegear, or the thrill of seeing a big engine at night when she's at full chat and throwing sparks, they are the ones to whom I equate!

And model engineering is common as well. Alan Taylor of capture-actions fame is a member of our local club, so anyone else out there with these interests?

CP



#3 Colin Richell

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 10:48 PM

Yes IN 1978 I decided to form a Society to preserve the very first Standard locomotive ie Britannia Pacific 70000, which was not going to be preserved for future generations, because of minimal damage.
After 8 years of bloody hard work we bought the loco for £4,100 , and was recently sold by Pete Waterman for £700,000.
The loco has just been restored at enormous cost and is due out on the main line on the 7th April.
My history was published in Railway Magazine many years ago.
The Company was dissolved and I lost my Directorship and shareholding (£3,000)
There are only two Britannias preserved, and every week of the year you can travel behind a steam locomotive to almost anywhere in the country.
Companies such as Steam Dreams normally charge around £75 for standard class £179 for dining.
I normally do about no more than 6 trips a year because of commitments.
I am proud of myachievements, and still get a great feeling when I see a working locomotive.
Hope you get to do a trip and don't forget your camera !
Colin Richell

#4 MusingMuso

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 10:50 PM

Over the years I have met and befriended a great many organists, of all 'shapes and sizes', but the one thing I have often discovered about them is a passion for all things steam-driven. Of course, we all know of clerical gentlemen (Bishop Treacy being the greatest of all) who take an interest in such things, but what about the rest of us? There must be many others; I certainly know that Adrian Self of Cartmel Priory shares my enthusiasm for steam. Perhaps it's the sheer majesty of power and noise, something common to the organ in the right context! And it's a living thing, as a good organ can be.

I can understand those who stand on platforms taking numbers (all deference to them if that's their scene) but those who know about Gresley's Conjugated Valvegear, or the thrill of seeing a big engine at night when she's at full chat and throwing sparks, they are the ones to whom I equate!

And model engineering is common as well. Alan Taylor of capture-actions fame is a member of our local club, so anyone else out there with these interests?

CP



==========================


Living in a town with a preserved steam railway, and only ten miles away from another. it's a bit difficult to avoid steam trains, but actually I am genuinely interested and even knowledgable about things mechanical.

I intend, when I get around to it, to write something about growing up in an industrial town during the heyday of manufacturing industry, which was the greatest education and the greatest playground of all. I was a "Meccano kid," and countless hours would be spent making bridges, or hooking up a "Mamod" steam-engine to a pulley system and cable-car set-up which ran down the stairs at home. I bathed not with a duck, but with a fully operational submarine which fired spring-loaded torpedoes. (It was important to have it facing the correct way!)

Then my brother discovered cable-flown model aircraft, and then radio-controlled versions, while I discovered hovercrafts.

The steam interest came later I suppose, largely due to a neighbour who was an engine driver. I think I was all of fourteen when I was spirited onto the footplate of the last BR train to run up the Worth Valley Railway, and unbeknown to everyone aboard, I took the control for a mile or two, under strict supervision. (Imagine THAT today!!!!)

Then I drove a traction-engine, which proved to a bit of a handful, to say the least.

Motorbikes didn't have such a hold on me, but my brother and I did get our hands on an ex-Isle of Man TT racer, ex-works AJS500, which we sold for the princely sum of £25. (It would now be worth ten of thousands.....not a wise business decision).

Cars, (and rally-cars especially) were to dominate my young adulthood, and when i wasn't competing, I could usually be found in the garage with the engine or gearbox in bits, getting everything ready for the next event.

Steam was therefore just a part of life, and in some ways, the one that I took for granted. The "Waverley" and "The Thames Clyde Express" thundered through town on a daily basis, and never seemed to slow down; the whole station trembling and shaking at quite a considerable magnitude. Not only that, a handful of the oldest mills still operated steam-engines, and I probably knew most of the engine-men who operated them.

Nostalgia is a wonderful thing, even if it isn't as good as it used to be, but if I could turn back the clock, I would just love to sit in one of the old style BR station cafes, eating a ham sandwich and sipping at tea while watching the trains pass by.

MM

#5 Contra Posaune

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 07:20 AM

==========================


Living in a town with a preserved steam railway, and only ten miles away from another. it's a bit difficult to avoid steam trains, but actually I am genuinely interest and even knoledgable about things mechanical.

I intend, when I get around to it, to write something about growing up in an industrial town during the heyday of manufacturing industry, which was the greatest education and the greatest playground of all. I was a "Meccano kid," and countless hours would be spent making bridges, hooking up a "Mamod" steam-engine to a pulley system and cable-car set-up which ran down the stairs at home. I bathed not with a duck, but with a fully operational submarine which fired spring-loaded torpedoes. (It was important to have it facing the correct way!)

Then my brother discovered cable-flown model aircraft, and then radio-controlled versions, while I discovered hovercrafts.

The steam interest came later I suppose, largely due to a neighbour who was an engine driver. I think I was all of fourteen when I was spirited onto the footplate of the last BR train to run up the Worth Valley Railway, and unbeknown to everyone aboard, I took the control for a mile or two, under strict supervision. (Imagine THAT today!!!!)

Then I drove a traction-engine, which proved to a bit of a handful, to say the least.

Motorbikes didn't have such a hold on me, but my brother and I did get our hands on an ex-Isle of Man TT racer, ex-works AJS500, which we sold for the princely sum of £25. (It would now be worth ten of thousands.....not a wise business decision).

Cars. (and rally-cars especially) were to dominate my young adulthood, and when i wasn't competing, I could usually be found in the garage with the engine or gearbox in bits, getting everything ready for the next event.

Steam was therefore just a part of life, and in some ways, the one that I took for granted. The "Waverley" and "The Thames Clyde Express" thundered through town on a daily basis, and never seemed to slow down; the whole station trembling and shaking at quite a considerable magnitude. Not only that, a handful of the oldest mills still operated steam-engines, and I probably knew most of the engine-men who operated them.

Nostalgia is a wonderful thing, and often innacurate, but if I could turn back the clock, I would just love to sit in one of the old style BR station cafes, eating a ham sandwich and sipping at tea while watching the trains pass by.

MM


Back in 2000 my wife treated me to a day on the East Lancs Railway, and I had a wonderful time! The highlight was driving 45407 with '8 on' from Bury to 'Rammy', all up-grade and whistle at the tunnels. That was when we didn't live ten miles away- now I'll go regularly for a run, plus seeing specials go through the area from time to time. The last one was Leander at night on the 'Buxton Spa'. A superb hobby that has been with me from infancy.

CP

#6 Martin Cooke

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 07:44 AM

Regarding organs and steam trains - John Dykes Bower was one such and I remember many conversations between him, 13 year old James Lancelot and Paul Edwards on the subject before morning choir practice.

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 08:50 AM

Yes, I'm a passed signalman (i.e. passed in the Rules and Regulations), and used to volunteer on the North York Moors Railway, where I was passed on the box at Goathland. (21 lever frame, working electric token block to Grosmont, and train staff and ticket to Levisham.) The line is far busier these days than it was towards the end of BR days.

Now moved to Wiltshire, so unable to volunteer for days up on the NYMR. We were passed in the Rules and Regs by an inspector from 'the Big Railway', i.e. Network Rail as it now is, meaning that we are eligible to apply to work on the national network. At least one of my colleagues (retired from his day job) did this, working as a relief signalman in the Yorkshire area.

My own transport interests are not confined to railway signalling, having also HGV1, PSV1 and a Private Pilots' Licence. Though nowadays finding the cash to indulge using the latter is somewhat rare.

I understand there are others on this board with similar interests - one wonders what it is which draws organists to these things.

#8 MusingMuso

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 09:22 AM

Yes, I'm a passed signalman (i.e. passed in the Rules and Regulations), and used to volunteer on the North York Moors Railway, where I was passed on the box at Goathland. (21 lever frame, working electric token block to Grosmont, and train staff and ticket to Levisham.) The line is far busier these days than it was towards the end of BR days.


==================


It's amazing how varied interests overlap. The Vale of Levisham, Goathland Moor, Cropton, Wykeham, Dalby, Rosedale ....I still have a box full of marked Ordinand Survey maps, on which the word "hairpin" seems to be repeated quite a few times.

Those were the days, when people didn't gripe and moan and complain; the police quite happy to turn a blind eye for the most part.

I expect they'll ban people rolling cheeses down steep hills next.

MM

PS: David Lowe, the theatre organist, was a full-time signalman when he wasn't taking parties of people on canal-boat trips.

#9 Davidb

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 09:30 AM

Another guilty party here, and I wasn't even alive when steam was last hauling passenger services on the mainline!

I'm a guard on the North Norfolk Railway (Sheringham) and also keep a website of railway photographs taken by myself, which occasionally end up in various publications, www.dave-ballard.co.uk

As much as I would like to volunteer on the footplate, my back seems to have other ideas sadly

#10 Contrabombarde

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 09:47 AM

Allegedly the organ in Bedford school chapel had a model steam engine that used to run along the top of the music desk, connected by pulley to the reservoir to indicate the amount of puff left in the organ!

#11 MusingMuso

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 10:04 AM

Allegedly the organ in Bedford school chapel had a model steam engine that used to run along the top of the music desk, connected by pulley to the reservoir to indicate the amount of puff left in the organ!



=======================

At my school, the head maths teacher-cum-school organist had replaced the usual lead weight with a lead soldier hanging from a noose.

I'm not sure what nationality the soldier was supposed to be, but it caused endless amusement at the time.

"Press the red guilty switch, dear boy. Our work is done."

MM

#12 Tony Newnham

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 10:15 AM

Over the years I have met and befriended a great many organists, of all 'shapes and sizes', but the one thing I have often discovered about them is a passion for all things steam-driven. Of course, we all know of clerical gentlemen (Bishop Treacy being the greatest of all) who take an interest in such things, but what about the rest of us? There must be many others; I certainly know that Adrian Self of Cartmel Priory shares my enthusiasm for steam. Perhaps it's the sheer majesty of power and noise, something common to the organ in the right context! And it's a living thing, as a good organ can be.

I can understand those who stand on platforms taking numbers (all deference to them if that's their scene) but those who know about Gresley's Conjugated Valvegear, or the thrill of seeing a big engine at night when she's at full chat and throwing sparks, they are the ones to whom I equate!

And model engineering is common as well. Alan Taylor of capture-actions fame is a member of our local club, so anyone else out there with these interests?

CP


Hi

Yes - and I remember main line steam (even though I used to live in the heart of "Southern electric" territory there was still plenty of steam around until 1966 or so). Also interested in other things mechanical - classic transport - and was a member of a Model Engineering Society for a while in Hastings. Currently I'm a member of Bradford Railway Circle (well - they do meet in my church!)

Every Blessing

Tony

#13 Redeye

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 07:25 PM

In addition to my interest in the King of Instruments, Iím a life member of the Steam railway which runs up the valley of MMís fiefdom. There are few greater pleasures than to chug up and down the line in the real ale bar coach on a Sunday afternoon.
Which reminds me that a good number of organists Iíve known are (in addition to an interest in preserved transport), also partial to cask conditioned real ale, (one of the best of which is brewed in MMís fiefdom at Ingrow!)
I remember accompanying the former organist of St Barts Armley, Anthony Norcliffe and a number of his seasonal guest recitalists, including Arthur Wills to a local pub for a ďnumberĒ of post recital refreshments.

Organs, Steam, Beer Ö. Perhaps were all descended from fairground stock?

Redeye

#14 nachthorn

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 07:29 PM

My own transport interests are not confined to railway signalling, having also HGV1, PSV1 and a Private Pilots' Licence. Though nowadays finding the cash to indulge using the latter is somewhat rare.

I understand there are others on this board with similar interests - one wonders what it is which draws organists to these things.

Without wanting to seem too eager to dust off my own anorak, I'll happily admit to a childhood of plane-spotting, largely instigated by my school organ teacher. The most notable organist/aviation buff, I think, is David Briggs. He once showed me a superb picture of a Boeing 747 flight deck with a Cavaille-Coll console superimposed, which looked about right (although I forget the source of the picture now). I get the impression that the organ-steam connection is a little stronger than organ-aviation though.

#15 Contrabombarde

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 07:56 PM

Without wanting to seem too eager to dust off my own anorak, I'll happily admit to a childhood of plane-spotting, largely instigated by my school organ teacher. The most notable organist/aviation buff, I think, is David Briggs. He once showed me a superb picture of a Boeing 747 flight deck with a Cavaille-Coll console superimposed, which looked about right (although I forget the source of the picture now). I get the impression that the organ-steam connection is a little stronger than organ-aviation though.

Oh yes, I guess you mean this:
Posted Image

And I'm sure I saw a cartoon of an organist, arms and legs going in all directions in a frenetic French toccata oblivious to the speedcops in hot pursuit, visible in his rear-view mirror!

I've never driven a train but can claim to have flown a plane (well, OK, copiloted a Cessna 208) in Africa.

#16 Colin Richell

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 08:10 PM

==========================


Living in a town with a preserved steam railway, and only ten miles away from another. it's a bit difficult to avoid steam trains, but actually I am genuinely interested and even knowledgable about things mechanical.

I intend, when I get around to it, to write something about growing up in an industrial town during the heyday of manufacturing industry, which was the greatest education and the greatest playground of all. I was a "Meccano kid," and countless hours would be spent making bridges, or hooking up a "Mamod" steam-engine to a pulley system and cable-car set-up which ran down the stairs at home. I bathed not with a duck, but with a fully operational submarine which fired spring-loaded torpedoes. (It was important to have it facing the correct way!)

Then my brother discovered cable-flown model aircraft, and then radio-controlled versions, while I discovered hovercrafts.

The steam interest came later I suppose, largely due to a neighbour who was an engine driver. I think I was all of fourteen when I was spirited onto the footplate of the last BR train to run up the Worth Valley Railway, and unbeknown to everyone aboard, I took the control for a mile or two, under strict supervision. (Imagine THAT today!!!!)

Then I drove a traction-engine, which proved to a bit of a handful, to say the least.

Motorbikes didn't have such a hold on me, but my brother and I did get our hands on an ex-Isle of Man TT racer, ex-works AJS500, which we sold for the princely sum of £25. (It would now be worth ten of thousands.....not a wise business decision).

Cars, (and rally-cars especially) were to dominate my young adulthood, and when i wasn't competing, I could usually be found in the garage with the engine or gearbox in bits, getting everything ready for the next event.

Steam was therefore just a part of life, and in some ways, the one that I took for granted. The "Waverley" and "The Thames Clyde Express" thundered through town on a daily basis, and never seemed to slow down; the whole station trembling and shaking at quite a considerable magnitude. Not only that, a handful of the oldest mills still operated steam-engines, and I probably knew most of the engine-men who operated them.

Nostalgia is a wonderful thing, even if it isn't as good as it used to be, but if I could turn back the clock, I would just love to sit in one of the old style BR station cafes, eating a ham sandwich and sipping at tea while watching the trains pass by.

MM



#17 nachthorn

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 08:10 PM

Oh yes, I guess you mean this:

Very similar, but I'm sure the one I saw had a genuine Cavaille-Coll console superimposed. In an effort to quickly search for this, I found that I mentioned this exact same thing on another topic here three years ago. Mental note: must get out more...

#18 Colin Richell

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 08:11 PM

Are you really serious about the BR sandwich ?
Colin Richell.

#19 Guest_drd_*

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 08:36 PM

==================


It's amazing how varied interests overlap. The Vale of Levisham, Goathland Moor, Cropton, Wykeham, Dalby, Rosedale ....I still have a box full of marked Ordinand Survey maps, on which the word "hairpin" seems to be repeated quite a few times.

Those were the days, when people didn't gripe and moan and complain; the police quite happy to turn a blind eye for the most part.

I expect they'll ban people rolling cheeses down steep hills next.

MM

PS: David Lowe, the theatre organist, was a full-time signalman when he wasn't taking parties of people on canal-boat trips.


Perhaps it is merely a pipe-dream, but it would be good to have an Ordinand Survey. Or perhaps a Campaign for Real Incumbents - to paraphrase a favourite reference tome of ours.

#20 SL

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 09:13 PM

And I'm sure I saw a cartoon of an organist, arms and legs going in all directions in a frenetic French toccata oblivious to the speedcops in hot pursuit, visible in his rear-view mirror!



Isn't that the famous Hoffnung cartoon?

SL (late of Kings College, Cambridge)





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