Jump to content
Mander Organ Builders Forum

Howden Minster (in East Yorkshire)


Recommended Posts

I was in Howden on Sunday, And was sat looking from a few yards away, at the beauty of the ruins there, and just thought, I had not visited the building for many years. And I know very little about the organ there, apart that a friend of mine, now sadly gone, was DOM there for a few years,. Can anyone enlighten me on the current situation of the organ, does it still function etc.

Thanks in anticipation

Peter

Link to post
Share on other sites

It was a three manual Rushworth of 1930, divided north and south in respectable cases. If it was anything like their similar instrument in St. James, Antrim Road, Belfast, it would have been a very fine job. John Jackson of Leeds rebuilt it in 1984 with some modification - Great Mixture, Choir Block Flute, etc. NPOR has details and I have no reason to believe that the instrument is not in good shape.

 

I was in Howden last September, but unfortunately got there too late to visit the Minster. The place is of interest to me because my family tree shows that Drinkells, who seem to have been of Viking origin from Jarvik (York), drifted eastward over the years (we are good at ambling) and settled in Howden for a time before winding up in Grimsby. Today, anyone with this name, or various variations thereof, will be from the Grimsby area or with recent antecedents from there - in my case, my grandfather.

 

I always feel sad looking at ruins and imagining what once was, and that view of the great central tower at Howden seen through the empty window of the ruined quire, is one of the most poignant scenes I know. I should like to play there some day.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks David.

I went in one christmas, to hear the organ, its sounded fine then, my friend, Ralph Franklin (formerley of St.Peters and Christ Church, in Harrogate) was playing. I have looked at NPOR, quite interesting, and a FB friend who I think has a hand in organrecitals com, has said he has not heard of it???? wonder why, if the instumment is a half decent one

Link to post
Share on other sites

My father lives in Howden and I was also in Howden Minster last week!

 

David is, as usual, entirely right about the Minster organ and, I also, have no reason to believe it is in anything but good shape! The Minster is another matter, however. I don't think I have ever visited anywhere that appeared so unkept and uncared for - a great shame!

 

They organise Organ Recitals every so often but, I understand, they are not well attended.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I was going to say................

 

They seem to have a succession of Organists at Howden, none of whom seem to have stayed very long. I know Andrew Leech, who was Peter Fletcher's assistant at Beverley (and possibly, also assistant, for a time, to Alan Spedding) was there.

 

But there is a plaque in the Minster to a previous organist who went under the glorious name of Farnhill Clayton - I was going to photograph it, but didn't! I think he was there for most of the early 20th Century.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hessle is an interesting place!!

 

Raymond Taylor was Organist at Hessle PC in my day - I think he had been there since around 1950! The organ was a 3 manual Foster & Andrews - rebuilt, badly, by Hall & Broadfield - it had Tuba Minor extensions all over the place! The instrument I had my first organ lesson on was in the Methodist Chapel in South Lane in Hessle. The Chapel is long since gone but the organ found it's way to Bradford, to St Joseph's, where, I'm told, it sounds magnificent. It was a 2 manual Hopkins of York.

 

Peter Allison - we must share some history if you lived 2 miles from Hessle PC - it would be interesting to remember instruments in that part of the world with someone else who might remember them!

 

As for Howden - I had forgotten but I gave a performance (in my previous life!!) in Howden Minster of the Elgar 'cello concerto - I think it might have been 1970/1971 - but not later than 1973. I don't remember much about the performance - apart from the church being cold!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

SL, I used to live and work in Cottingham, but was born and raised in Durham( hence the photo on my profile). Ralph Franklin who was mentioned in the article in this thread, was a good family friend, and when I started my business i Goole (over the river Ouse), I used to go to Howden a lot. My interest has just been "nudged" this past weekend as (for personal reasons) I will be a frequent visitor again

Link to post
Share on other sites

David - for once you are wrong!!!

 

I was in Howden (East Yorks!) at some point last year. The day after they had what has become known as the Howden Tornado - with torrential rain and winds!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...