The Organ of All Hallows, Berkyngechirche by the Tower.


All Hallows

The first organ was built by Anthony Duddyngton in 1519 and completed in 1520 at a cost of £50. The original indenture between Duddyngton and the Churchwardens is still preserved in the parish records. Of 'double Ce-fa-ut' compass and comprising 'xxvij playne keys', it was removed during the period of the Commonwealth Parliament (mid-17th century).

After the Commonwealth, the Vestry contracted with Renatus Harris for the construction of a new organ at a cost of £300; fifty years later this instrument was repaired by Gerard Smith (nephew of the famous Father Smith) who added a choir organ and handsome case.

In 1813 it was again repaired, by G. P. England at a cost of £230. Alterations were made in 1881 after considerable damage by fire, and in 1909 a new organ, retaining some of the original pipes, was constructed by Harrison's of Durham who made further additions in 1938. It was on this organ that Dr. Albert Schweitzer made his world-famous Bach recordings. The organ was totally destroyed during an air raid in December 1940.

The present three-manual organ, of 44 speaking stops, was built by Harrison and Harrison Ltd in 1957 at an approximate cost of £20,000 and contains a silver pipe inscribed to the late Queen Mary.

The Royal Arms on the front of the organ loft in the west gallery, are the original Stuart Arms of the Restoration (1660) of King Charles II to the throne of England.

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The Organ of the Catholic Apostolic Church of Christ the King, Gordon Square, WC1

The organ was built by Gray and Davison in 1870 and replaced the original small two-manual organ which used to occupy part of the space where the choir seats now are. It was modernised and enlarged by Walker in 1939.

The instrument stands on an oak gallery in the north transept. The detached stop-key console has three manuals and pedals and is situated on the floor of the opposite (south) transept. There are 58 speaking stops together with the usual couplers and accessories. In addition to the swell, the choir organ is also enclosed. The action is electro-pneumatic.

The religious community for whom the church was built were known as '"Irvingites" after Edward Irving (1792-1834), the Scottish divine, who gave impetus to a movement originating in Scotland. The liturgy contains elements from the Anglican, Roman and Greek churches. For some years the building was used as the chaplaincy church for the University of London.

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