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HISTORY & TECHNICAL DETAILS OF THE GRAND ORGAN IN THE VICTORIA HALL

Come and hear it live at a Saturday Organ Prom!

click on pictures to enlarge

It was built by the Conacher Organ Company in 1884 for the Saltaire exhibition, and re-erected in the Victoria Hall for the opening in 1888.

Master Potter George Meakin paid for it and presented it to the Hanley Borough Council . It had 37 stops, 4 keyboards and pedals.

Organ 1
Organ 2

In 1922 it was rebuilt and enlarged by another famous organ builder of the time, Henry Willis, when it was enlarged to 62 stops.

Its tonal range was expanded to include several colourful solo stops and additional powerful reed stops, including a family of Trombas at 16' 8 & 4' pitch on the Great Organ, a huge 16' Pedal Ophicleide, and a second Tuba stop on the Solo organ at 18" wind pressure.

Organ 3

In 1988 the organ was completely restored for the Victoria Hall' s centenary by Hill, Norman & Beard, and following the 1997 refurbishment of the hall, the organ is now in the care of the firm of David Wells Organ Builders, Liverpool for tuning and maintenance. It now has 72 stops, 4 manuals and pedals.

Technical specification of the Victoria Hall Organ

10 Solo Organ- 16, 8, 8, 4, 4, 2, 16 , 8 , 8, 8

17 Swell Organ - 16, 8, 8, 8, 8, 8, 4, 4, 2 & 2/3, 2, III, V, 8, 8, 16, 8, 4

14 Great Organ - 16, 8, 8, 8, 8, 4, 4, 2 & 2/3, 2, III, IV, 16, 8, 4

15 Choir Organ - 16, 8 ,8, 8, 8, 4, 4, 2 & 2/3, 2, 1 & 3/5, 1, III, 16, 8, 8

16 Pedal Organ - 32,16,16,16,16,16, 8, 8, 8,4, II,16, 32,16, 16, 8

Wind pressures range from 3" to 18" and are generated by 2 fan blowers. There are 5 humidifiers.
A full detailed specification of all the stops is available for £1.50 - go to 'Contacts'

Organ 4

The Victoria Hall's Grand Organ is now ranked as one of the best concert hall organs in the world, its array of beautiful tone colours and wide dynamic range from very quiet sounds to the majestic "full organ" is linked to the equally famous acoustic of the hall, highly acclaimed by many of the top orchestral conductors, instrumentalists, soloists and choirs. Why not come and hear it for yourself at one of the Saturday Organ Proms?