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Graham Dukes

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About Graham Dukes

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  • Birthday 02/11/1930

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    Oslo, Norway
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    Profession:Medical Doctor and Attorney<br />Law and Ethics of the Pharmaceutical Industry<br />History of newspapers<br />Classic organs<br />Hasselblad photography<br />Rolls-Royce Cars
  1. MM/Colin, Thanks for your quick reply. Even ten pages of Compton history is further than anyone else has ever got! Just briefly: a. I didn't know that Henry Royce had made items for Robert Hope-Jones, and that doesn't seem to be mentioned in any of the Royce biographies. Henry tried lots of things in his days as a an electrical manufacturer, ranging from overhead cranes to domestic doorbells, so I'm not surprised that he tried organ components as well. b.I will have a go at the Pilling family history later this week and see how far I get. c. You are certainly right that Compton did
  2. I was active on this topic two years ago, but during 2012 I was so fully occupied with other things that I was unable to contribute. I am delighted that MusingMuso is now at work on a draft text of the Compton history, and that so much has been pieced together in recent months thanks to this forum. I am no more than an amateur organist but I have written and edited a lot of books in other fields, and I remain willing to provide any help I can to move this project ahead. You might like to contact Mr David Clegg, who only quite recently retired from the general manager's position at Makin O
  3. Thanks for your quick and encouraging response MM. I also had a positive letter from Ian Bell, whom I contacted directly, and who is one of the few people to have written a short biography of John Compton (for BIOS). He is as fully occupied as we all are, but wants to keep in touch with the venture. Let's wait a few more days and see if more people turn up. I agree that electronic publishing might be the best approach, and one might also think of working with BIOS who could be interested in making this the subject of one of their meetings, with various speakers dealing with the different a
  4. Having re-read much that has been written here and elsewhere about John Compton (including Ian Bell's writings) I wonder: there seems to be broad agreement that a book is needed but do we have to give up on the idea because we are all too busy? I mentioned earlier that I am an experienced editor and writer (mostly in the medicolegal field) as well as being an organist with a lot of interest in the Compton story and contacts with the JC factory in its sad latter days, BUT I simply lack the technical knowledge to tackle this topic alone. Is it not possible that a group of us could work togeth
  5. Dear MM: I should add to my message of last night that my belief that the original parent company of Compton-Makin was a Bibby division was simply derived from your own findings on the Bibby association. All that I know was that the direct parent of Compton-Makin when it was set up in 1970 was J & J Makin Ltd of Rochdale. Whether Makin was in turn a daughter of Bibby plc I really don't know. Graham Dukes
  6. Yes, Contrabombarde, I was the Graham Dukes who was Research Manager of Organon in The Netherlands in the sixties. We had several good organists in the Research Division, and a joke went around that this was the reason why the firm was called Organon. Much later Organon disappeared into the clutches of Scherinbg-Plough, which in turn was absorbed by Merck. I left Organon forty years ago to join the Netherlands Ministry of Health, and later the World Health Organization and the University. I'm afraid this discussion has moved off track, but perhaps John Mander will forgive us. Graham
  7. Dear MM, I was delighted to read your letter to the Forum. The explanation as to how Compton-Makin Organs came into the Bibby group is quite simple. One of the Directors in their paper manufacturing division was a keen amateur organist, John Makin Pilling, who knew the Compton people well. When the final collapse came he put a lot of his own money into acquiring and thus saving the Compton rotating condenser system, recruited some Compton people, and resumed production in a section of the paper factory. He realized the limitations of the system, and developed a fine instrument for
  8. Some time has gone by since most of the contributions came into the Forum on the subject of John Compton and his contribution to the development of the organ. There was a lot of interest in the proposal to pull together the material for a good technical and musical biography, that among other things could call on the expertise or writings of people like Ian Bell, Roger Taylor, Laurence Elvin or Ivor Buckingham. It would be a great pity if this proposal were to be forgotten - there is still time enough to collect and collate it all, and soon it may be too late. One aspect that has hardly bee
  9. I went round all the well-known brands of electronic instruments nine years ago and found Makin superior to the rest. It has in recent years been built by Johannus in Holland (who now own Makin) but it is a thoroughly English organ, using samples from, Hill, Harrison and others. I bought mine in 1999 and it has been absolutely dependable. This model, a 3-manual Sovereign, has an alternative voicing option with French/German specification, and can similarly be switched to middle tone tuning or Werckmeister at the touch of a thumb piston. The "Sovereign" model has now been superseded but the c
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