For this church:
Clumber Park St Mary
The organ is mounted in a carved casework painted in gothic style green and gold and black with stencilled decor as ordered by Bodley in 1889 and fitted high in the panelled tribune above on the north-eastern side of the choir in the loft made of linen-fold re-grained and gilded panelling. The three manual instrument was built by Gray and Davidson of 870 Euston Road, London and Colquitt Street, Liverpool, at a cost of some £3,000, to a specification drawn up by Dr. Roberts, chapel organist at the Duke’s Magdalen College, Oxford. The casing is of oak with bone and ivory stops and ivory keys. An inscription in black Gothic script over the keyboard reads
This was powered by a hand pumped bellows, which was later upgraded to a water-pump powered system.
The organist, Leslie Rupert Pike, from 1917, was responsible for music and all the minor repairs to the organ at the Chapel.
Whilst Pike had endeavoured to raise adequate funds, much more cash was required. Some sympathy to the plight was gathered and John Trayner, who lived at the Parsonage, set up a Chapel Committee as the National Trust’s agent for Clumber Park. Through his chairmanship, and the efforts of the Committee, more cash was directed to their common efforts, and, using expertise from the National Trust, the organ was again repaired and cleaned ready for the re-opening service held on May 25th 1952.
The instrument was extensively restored in 1979 by Messrs. Harrison and Harrison, and the painted panel front restored to its former glory by S.E. Dykes Bower. It will be observed however, when comparing with Brewer’s perspective drawing there is some difference to the end panel detail.
The pressurised air is provided, since the 1979 restoration, by an electrical Watkins and Watkins Ltd. blower unit developing 2.75 to 4 inches of mercury air-pressure.
At the opening in 1889, the duke’s organist, Mr George F. Ashley, shared the organ accompaniment with Dr. Roberts, who had spent some months in rehearsing the local choir for this first service. Unfortunately, when the house party was due to proceed to the Chapel a storm broke and the whole proceedings had to be delayed. Thus, Dr. Roberts was called on to supply considerably more music than he had planned for, to cover the interlude.