ORGAN OF THE MONTH 105: March 2011

Christ's Hospital School Dining Hall, Horsham
("Father" Willis, 1876)

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There can't be many schools in the country (or, indeed, in the world) that have four pipe-organs on site. But how many, I wonder, can boast of a working "Father" Willis in their Dining Hall?!  One of the venues visited during the 2010 IAO Congress was Christ's Hospital in Horsham, West Sussex, and as delegates were ushered in the school's Dining Hall for morning coffee we were greeted by the exceptional (unique?) sight of such an organ standing in the corner surrounded by dining tables and trays.

Director of Music Adrian Bawtree welcomed us by demonstrating this small, but unmolested, Willis - a joy to hear - before playing a recital on the five-manual Rushworth & Dreaper in the school chapel.

The "Father" Willis organ was originally installed in Christ's Hospital Girls School, which was then at Hertford. It was moved (by Hill Norman & Beard) to the Music School at Christ's Hospital, Horsham, in 1985, and then moved to its present location in the dining-hall during 2002 by Pat Christian.


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Last modified: March 27, 2011