Restoration Details

Restoration Details

Andrew Hayden, project consultant, writes:

The Holdich organ in St Margaret's Upton, Norfolk is a distinguished survival from a period widely regarded as the 'Golden Age' of Victorian organ building, from roughly 1850 to 1880; a period when British organs were known the world over. 

It combines the unforced tone of English classical organs such as those by Father Smith, Abraham Jordan, Richard Bridge and the like, with a more modern approach including, for the time, the latest in 'helps' for the organist such as pre-set stop combinations, swell box and a full compass pedalboard. New sounds such as the Clarabella, Cornopean and the Dulciana, not to mention Holdich's 'Dia-Octon' coupling device which enlarged the scope of the organ, are also to be found here, all crafted to Holdich's exacting standards. Ringing manual choruses combine with beautifully voiced flute work and excellent reeds to create a thrilling sound underpinned by sturdy, durable construction with generous proportions to all parts.

This organ is a magnificent and important example of Holdich's work at his peak and, locally, has a justly deserved reputation. 

Richard Bower, widely known for his interest in and work on Holdich organs, has been entrusted with its restoration. This will return it to its state before 1962 when it was altered following work by Storr Bros and later amateur interventions in the 1970s. 

Restoration will also place it alongside other more widely known monuments to nineteenth century organ building such as St Anne's, Limehouse and St Mary's, Usk, and assure its future for decades if not centuries to come giving players and listeners the opportunity to experience all that was best about British organs of the time.

Specification of the Organ when restored

C  - f '''   54 notes          

Open Diapason 8 
Stopped Diapason Bass 8 
Clarabella 8 c (open from c ') 
Principal 4
Flute 4 (stopped)
Twelfth 2 2/3 
Fifteenth 2
Mixture II C - b 19.22; c ' – f '' 12.15; f# ''- f ''' 8.12.           
Trumpet 8 new rank to Holdich pattern to replace discarded original

C  - f '''   54 notes

All stops from c while lowest octave plays Stopped Bass (from Great). 
All flue stops carried up to f '''' to accommodate Dia-Octon coupler.  

Double Diapason 16        
Open Diapason 8           
Stopped Diapason 8            
Principal 4            
Mixture II C – f ''' 12.15.
Cornopean 8            
Hautboy 8

C  - e '    29 notes 

Pedal Pipes 16 Open Wood to replace a Bourdon inserted in the 1970s

Swell Diaocton             
Swell to Great
Great to Pedal
3 combination levers to Great Lever swell pedal
Electric blowing with hand-blowing intact
Tracker action to manuals and pedals (based on surviving evidence)
Mechanical stop action
Pedalboard to Holdich pattern
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