19th November 2021

[Paul talking to the York & District Organists’ Association]

This is proving the busiest Autumn for several years.  Over the past week, three more trips: two to perform, one to observe. On Saturday November 13th I was in York, to deliver a talk on my recent organ project to the York and District Organists’ Association. It was much the same talk as I gave in Taunton a week ago, but greatly enhanced by being in a fine room in the new Music Department at Bootham’s School, which boasted an enormous screen.

The Gray & Davison organ of St John of Beverley, Whatton

The next day I was ‘opening’ a charming little 1877 Gray & Davison at Whatton – close to our Bingham home – along with the excellent Cranmer Singers and their conductor Deborah Davies. The tenor-C Swell was a handicap but the restoration had been done immaculately by Chris Hind and Lewis Paul.

The nave of Worksop Priory, looking East

On Wednesday this week I joined my friends in the Nottingham & District Society of Organists for part of their trip to Worksop. First stop was the impressive Norman Worksop Priory, with its early Peter Collins organ standing proudly in front of the east wall, in an extension to the Priory church created in the early 1970s. Though its action has had to be reworked over the years, its tone carries surprisingly well down the lengthy nave, despite the lofty wooden roof. Then we visited the workshops of Goetze & Gwynn to observe interesting restoration work in progress (including a fairground organ). I peeled off after that but the NDSO visited Worksop College in the afternoon, where I had been involved in the organ rebuild a number of years ago. Alas, this coming weekend’s two activities have had to be postponed as my back has decided to say ‘enough is enough’ for a while.