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The Organ


www.bradfordcathedralorganappeal.co.uk gives details of our £250,000 Organ Restoration Appeal, launched in February 2013 and aiming to fully restore and enhance the organ by 2019, the year when we celebrate the Cathedral's centenary of elevation from parish church to Cathedral.

November 2016 - UPDATE - The first phase of work, a total upgrade of the organ console, has now been carried out by Andrew Carter, our Organ Builder. Over £145000 has either been received or pledged in donations from many individuals and grant making trusts.

The organ was built for the former Parish Church by William Hill and Son of Islington, at a cost of £1600. Hill had recently built several large organs including those at Peterborough, Lichfield and Chester Cathedrals. It was a large three manual organ with 40 speaking stops, tightly packed into what is now the North Ambulatory. It was dedicated at Evensong on Wednesday 10 February 1904.

In the 1950s and 60s, the Cathedral East end was enlarged and the organ rebuilt by the successors of the original firm – now called Hill, Norman and Beard. It was raised some 20 feet above the Ambulatory, from where it speaks into the new and resonant Chancel. The instrument was enlarged and a new Nave Organ provided to produce adequate tonal projection down the Nave. A new four manual console was positioned in the loft opposite the main organ.

In 1977, the main organ was dismantled for cleaning by J W Walker and Son. An opportunity was taken to remedy some of the defects of the 1961 scheme that had become apparent over the intervening 16 years. The projection of tone from the main organ down the Nave was still unsatisfactory. The Great Organ was therefore moved to the front of the chamber and the Positif organ relocated in a new case of its own on a lower level. The Swell organ was provided with additional shutters on the South side of the box. These open vertically and aid in the projection of sound into the nave.

All the mixtures on the organ were redesigned to provide higher harmonics and most of the pipework was re-voiced to give a brighter tone.The Solo Trumpet was moved to the centre of the organ, just above the Positif case. The result of the improvements was that the Cathedral gained an instrument of great versatility, able to produce the right sounds for music of many different styles and periods. Above all the tone is tremendously exciting and full of character.

In 1987, during the Cathedral's extensive re-ordering, the Nave Organ was dismantled. The Purcell Trumpet (En-Chamade) was stored and eventually incorporated into the main case. The full organ sound is overwhelming and an Organ recital in the Cathedral is an event of considerable interest and importance.


(William Hill & Sons 1904, Hill Norman & Beard 1961, J. W. Walker & Sons 1977)


Open Diapason 8
Principal 8
Rohr Flute 8
Octave 4
Spitz Principal 4
Clear Flute 4
Fifteenth 2
Quartaine II
Mixture III
Tromba 8
Clarion 4
Trumpet Major 8
Octave Trumpet

Geigen Diapason 8
Hohl Flute 8
Spitz Flute 8
Spitz Flute Celeste (ten C)
Geigen Octave 4
Stopped Flute 4
Super Octave 2
Quint Mixture III
Sharp Mixture II
Contra Fagotto 16
Cornopean 8
Oboe 8
Clarion 4

Sub Bass 32
Open Wood 16
Open Metal 16
Violone 16
Bourdon 16
Quintaten 16 (from Positive)
Octave 8
Violoncello 8
Bass Flute 8
Fifteenth 4
Block Flute 2
Mixture III
Trombone 16
Trumpet 8 (from Solo)
Octave Trumpet 4 (from Solo)

Viola da Gamba 8
Gedeckt 8
Orchestral Viole 8
Holz Flute 4
Nazard 2 2/3
Italian Principal 2
Clarinet 8
Trumpet Major 8
Purcell Trumpet 8
Quintaten 16
Flute a Cheminee 8
Prinzipal 4
Koppelflote 4
Nazat 2 2/3
Octav 2
Tierce 1 3/5
Sifflote 1
Solo to Pedal
Swell to Pedal
Great to Pedal
Choir to Pedal
Nave to Pedal
Solo Octave
Solo Sub Octave
Solo Unison Off
Swell Octave
Swell Sub Octave
Swell to Great
Positive to Great
Solo to Great
Swell Octave to Great
Swell Sub Octave to Great
Solo to Choir
Swell to Solo
Great Reeds on Positive

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