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Sunday 30th August
Organ consulting has carried on over the past few months, though without being able to visit churches or organ-builders. Now that both are accessible again it's very good to be out more. One exciting recent visit was to Nicholsons to view progress with the new organ for Radley College. Here's a photograph of the Pedal 32ft Subbass and 16ft Open Wood pipes in their workshop, along with a stack of poplar for the building frame.
Sunday 9th August
Back on the bench yesterday - the first time in public since March 14th! I enjoyed giving a thirty-minute recital on the Binns / Willis in the magnificent All Saints' Church, Loughborough, before Compline. A good attendance - indeed their pre-booked quota of spaced-out seats was fully booked. All went well - though I had to remove the Covid-19 mask to play, as I kept steaming up!
Friday 10th July
My Meccano excavator - a lock-down task - is now complete! Its vintage 20-volt Meccano motor plus the gears, drums, cables and pulleys enable the jib and bucket to be raised and lowered independently and at varying speeds. The controls are behind the yellow sliding door on the cab side. There are a mixture of colours because my old red and green Meccano had to be topped up with some modern yellow and metal-coloured pieces, but it all adds to the charm. I had to alter the Meccano instructions somewhat, changing the position of the motor to counterbalance the weight of the jib; it all now balances perfectly. It's been great fun and occasionally challenging: can't bear to think of taking it apart, so I'll find somewhere for it to stand for a few months. Might play with it, too!
Tuesday 2nd June
It's hard to come up with a third Meccano image without giving the game away as to which model I'm constructing. If you think you now know - and you must be specific about model and number - do let me know and a prize will be yours! As well as occasional days working on the model I've been writing articles for Choir & Organ, Organists' Review and Organ Building, copying old New College organ recital tapes on to CDs for the friends who played them (back in the 1970s), scanning colour slides from past decades, re-learning the Elgar Organ Sonata and many of the Bach 'Eighteen', and going for long walks. A pleasant and productive way to fill one's time!
Tuesday 19th May
Well, here's the second image from the building of my large Meccano model: what is it to be? I've actually made more progress than this, so will soon post a third image. If you can name the exact model then you win the competition and a new CD of me playing the wonderful organ at Southwell Minster will be your prize.
Friday 8th May
It's been something of a blessing to have had time over the past six weeks to tidy and file everything that needs tidying and filing, to get in two really solid organ practice sessions a day, and to enjoy plenty of reading. However, there was still time for something else: then it came to me - Meccano!
Guess the Meccano model competition
My Meccano has been in various lofts for 55 years, so out it came, topped up via Ebay, and I've embarked on making the tricky model which last defeated me at the age of 12. I'm determined it will not do so now I'm 68! I'll post photos of sections of it as they are made, and think it would be fun to have a little competition: the first reader who correctly identifies the precise model (name and number) I'm making will be send a copy of my Southwell Minster organ CD 'Southwell Splendour' which has a choice of music to suit everybody.
So, over to you, and here is an image of the first section I completed. What's the model going to be??