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Question Re Organs In Banbury And Bedford


Guest Andrew Butler
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Guest Andrew Butler

I pride myself on a good memory, but it has failed me in 2 specific cases.

 

I recall playing a 3-man organ in the 1960's in an Anglican church in Bedford, with a detached console at the East and pipework in a West gallery. I can't find anything on NPOR that matches this........

 

I also recall looking into St Mary's, banbury, in the early '70's and could swear the organ was in the west gallery; NPOR does not support this........

 

Any ideas anyone......?

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I pride myself on a good memory, but it has failed me in 2 specific cases.

 

I recall playing a 3-man organ in the 1960's in an Anglican church in Bedford, with a detached console at the East and pipework in a West gallery. I can't find anything on NPOR that matches this........

 

I also recall looking into St Mary's, banbury, in the early '70's and could swear the organ was in the west gallery; NPOR does not support this........

 

Any ideas anyone......?

 

St Mary Banbury I know, and it hasn't been in a gallery since 1874. It is a remarkably good instrument despite looking like a hotch-potch on paper. It has a Hollins "blind" console. Since NPOR updates it has had two rebuilds - a disastrous electrification by a local bulider whose identity I know not, which more or less fell apart within a few years - and a subsequent re-electrification by the same person, and repairs to some flood damage. It's an extraordinary building and a very good noise.

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I pride myself on a good memory, but it has failed me in 2 specific cases.

 

I recall playing a 3-man organ in the 1960's in an Anglican church in Bedford, with a detached console at the East and pipework in a West gallery. I can't find anything on NPOR that matches this........

 

I also recall looking into St Mary's, banbury, in the early '70's and could swear the organ was in the west gallery; NPOR does not support this........

 

Any ideas anyone......?

 

 

Can't help you with Banbury, but the Bedford Church might be a methodist church called something like Pilgrim meeting house?? On NPOR it says East End loft, but I did a lecture for the RSCM there around 7 or 8 years ago and feel convinced the pipes are at the west end - no doubt someone else will put us out of our misery! What about St Paul's Bedford? Console on South side in a gallery (just like a cathedral!) and organ opposite on the North side. Something like 75 speaking stops with little borrowing, yet in the nave it sounds like 7 stops! Dreadful organ...

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Guest Andrew Butler
Can't help you with Banbury, but the Bedford Church might be a methodist church called something like Pilgrim meeting house?? On NPOR it says East End loft, but I did a lecture for the RSCM there around 7 or 8 years ago and feel convinced the pipes are at the west end - no doubt someone else will put us out of our misery! What about St Paul's Bedford? Console on South side in a gallery (just like a cathedral!) and organ opposite on the North side. Something like 75 speaking stops with little borrowing, yet in the nave it sounds like 7 stops! Dreadful organ...

 

Thanks for these ideas. The Anglican church is a hazy memory, I was probably 9 or 10 at the time! and I am certain it was not St Paul's. If you mean Bunyan Meeting House in Mill Street, I know it well as I had family connections there. In fact, we were staying with relatives who were not amused that I wanted to go to Evensong at the Anglican church (which one?!?!?) rather than go with them to Bunyan!

 

I don't have the URL, but if you find the Bunyan Meeting website, there is a photo of the interior showing the pipes at the "east" end. The console is at floor level on the left at the front. I have played it, and the chief thing I recall is a rather paltry piston provision.

 

Banbury was a hazy memory from a very brief visit. I see from the church website that the west-facing case is as I recall it. I must have got the positioning (very) wrong in my mind.

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