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About annewillis11

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  1. Thanks for this I see that Henry Willis was variable about his birth place in the census returns. In 1851 it is given as St Luke Middlesex (the same as his wife); in 1871 Middlesex; in 1881 Christ Church Middlesex (Hoxton or Spitalfields?) and in 1891 Spitalfields. in 1861 he was absent on the night of the census. According to Thistlethwaite his father sang in the choir at the Surrey Chapel, Blackfriars, so did the family live south of the river at some point? Or was the music at the Surrey Chapel worth a long walk?
  2. Thank you for this. 

    I see that Father Henry Willis was somewhat variable in census returns for his place of birth.  In 1851 it was the same as his wife's  'St Luke's Middlesex'; in 1871 plain Middlesex; in 1881 Christ Church Middlesex (Hoxton or Spitalfields? ) and in 1981 Spitalfields. [In 1861 he was declared 'absent'.]



  3. Wide variation in humidty made a substantial contribution to the problems with the HWIII organ at Holy Trinity Bradford on Avon. An organ in a church on a flood plain does not have ideal conditions; the relative humidty along the Avon valley can go up to 90%, never mind floods and leaky roofs Heating and vicious drafts tended to dry the organ out, and at one point the Vicar resorted to galvanised zinc flower trays inside the organ to rehumidfy it. Eventually a humidifier was installed. A new oil-fired heating system gave wide fluctuations inside the church and uninsulated heating pipes
  4. I was doing some census searches for someone else entirely and found the young Henry Willis I in Factory Row, Marylebone in 1841. The senior organ builder was William Richardson, aged 45, and the other organ builders included Willis, James Miller, both aged 20 and Thomas Matthews aged 25. According to Boeringer Richardson was ‘a London and Lancashire organ builder established 1845’, but I have found that Boeringer is not always accurate with his dates. Matthews and Miller are not mentioned in Boeringer but apparently there was a BIOS article in January 1979 about ‘Matthews (Thomas): o
  5. The former West Gallery organ at Holy Trinity Organ is mentioned in the Sperling notebooks as being built by GP England around 1800. Boeringer makes the comment that this is apparently the only source that preserves this information. In 1798 the organ was rebuilt by John Maddey of Bristol for £163. In 1807 it was repaired by Todd (who was he?) and Smith (presumably John Smith I of Bristol). A flute and a dulciana were added by John Holland of Bath in 1808 and 1810 respectively, and Holland maintained the organ until 1828. Further improvements included a new keyboard installed by Frick
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