Back in 1994 the organ was restored at a cost of £20,000. Various parts were renewed, repaired and cleaned. One of the parts (there are actually 58 of them in total) were not as these were in good condition—23 years ago.
I cannot remember when the organ was last restored before 1994, so these parts must be over 50 years old and get a fair bit of hammering every week. The parts are called “pulldown pneumatics”. There is one pulldown pneumatics per black and white key on the upper keyboard and they connect the keyboard to a valve under each pipe.
It is extremely difficult for me to get photographs of the internal mechanism of the organ due to it being inside the organ. However, these pictures shows what they are:
(One of them is being pointed to - there is one per key
These pulldown pneumatics valves are breaking up as the leather deteriorates with age (like us all!). If they are not rebuilt, they will fail and 1/3rd of the organ will be unplayable. The organ tuners estimate it is going to cost £5,000 to remove the 58 valves from the back of the organ, take them to the workshop, remove all the leather, rebuild them and then re-install and set them up. It is a very labour intensive job done by hand.
It would be nice to get them sorted as the organ is 100 years old in Easter 2020. It was built in 1920 (along with two plaques) in memory of those who fell in the Great War.
If you feel you can give a couple of pennies to the repair it would be really kind of you. You will be adding to the history of the organ.
It would also be nice if a 2nd hand electronic organ could be purchased for our sister church, which has suffered a lot of damage due to a leaking roof and basically destroyed the Historical Organ with water damage. It would cost over £300,000 to repair. Meanwhile, they are making do with a small home electronic organ. The church has already raised enough money to replace the roof, part of the electrics, and are currently raising money for work on the parts of the roof which has not been done, to finish of the electrics and install a new heating system.
Both organs are in the parish of Bury Roch Valley: http://www.buryrochvalley.org.uk/
One in St. Peter's Church (pictured), and one at St. Thomas' Church, both in Bury.
The St. Thomas' organ is not good. Here are the photographs:
If anyone wants to look and/or play them, feel free to contact me. St. Thomas' organ CANNOT be played due to the power being disconnected, but can be looked at. Samuel Sebastian Wesley has played a recital in March 1868 on the organ at St. Thomas'. More information can be found at:
https://tinyurl.com/ybujjgau (takes you to a Google page).
Thank you, Paul Greenwood