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Your Webmaster recently made a second trip to Derbyshire, this time to hear a talented young organist, recently Organ Scholar at Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, Martyn Noble (see photo, right).
The lunch-time recital was well supported by an audience of over 120, who were rewarded with a very varied programme (from Bach via Nigel Ogden to Vierne) lasting nearly two hours! Given the absence of any modern playing aids on this modest-sized and unmolested Nicholson & Lord, this was a considerable tour de force.
This instrument was built during a vintage period (the turn of the 19th to 20th centuries) in the work of N & L, which was established in 1816 at Rochdale, but moved to Walsall in 1862. It remains very largely in its original state, with only a lever-operated combination mechanism, ivory stop-heads (see photo, above right) and tracker action.
The only significant change during the 2001 rebuild was to convert the pedal stop action from mechanical to pnuematic. The organ is now in the care of Alan Goulding of Pipe Organ Services Ltd, Grantham.