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organ 205

July 2019

3 manuals
44 speaking stops


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St John the Baptist

Bromsgrove

Builders

Nicholson, 1858

Hawkins & Son, 1953

Trevor Tipple, 1983, 2006


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A recent joint meeting of the Birmingham and Worcestershire Organists' Associations took place at St John's Bromsgrove, when a masterclass on French Romantic organ music was given by Professor Steven Grahl, IAO President 2017-9.

The church houses a substantial 3-manual instrument suitable for this purpose, dating from the mid-19th century: an early example of the work of John Nicholson and this now famous Worcestershire firm.  Originally on the north side of the chancel, it was moved to its present position on the south side and enlarged in the 1950s when a horseshoe stopkey console was provided.
Nicholson's provided a new drawstop console in 1973.  Local builder Trevor Tipple relocated the Tuba rank, positioning it atop (unenclosed) rather than inside the Choir box.  Also, a set of "chancel" shutters was added to the Swell box, controlled by a separate pedal.

In 2005-6, Trevor Tipple rebuilt the instrument, after which further modifications to the high pressure reed provision was made by Gary Owen who currently maintains the instrument. This included a Compton Tuba on 16in wg (requiring a dedicated blower) and revoicing the bottom octave of the previous Tuba as a Pedal Bombarde.

You can hear Jonathan Scott playing the 2007 Nicholson organ in Bury (Gt Manchester) parish church as July 2019's Music of the Month.

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