Our Organ


At the end of the nineteenth century ambitious plans were made for a four manual organ for St Stephen's, to be housed in the large organ chamber in the north chancel gallery. In the event only a fraction of the proposed instrument was installed - part of two manuals and the pedal division, composed of a total of 19 stops, was originally commissioned in 1905, although the console and much else was tantalisingly prepared for the full specification.

A prime example of Norman and Beard's excellent pipework, typical of that period, it was equipped with tubular-pneumatic action with a range of registration aids. This lasted 100 years until deterioration of the leather-work and pneumatics made reconstruction imperative. The position of the organ, together with a steady temperature and humidity, had meant that it had remained remarkably stable through most of the century.

The instrument was conscientiously reconstructed and enlarged by TW Fearn and Son in 2001 as a large three manual and pedal instrument, using modern electro-pneumatic action with a full range of playing aids and couplers. As information on the original design had been available, the church had sought and found all the necessary pipe work from the Norman and Beard organ that was being decommissioned at Haileybury College, dating from almost the identical year. The tonal effect within a relatively short acoustic is astounding; particularly the ability of the large reed content of the organ to blend seamlessly with the original flue work. The chorus reeds are especially effective. The organ also benefits from having a broad palette of tonal colours available within the fully-enclosed English Choir department, contributing substantially to the effectiveness of accompanied singing.

It is an exciting instrument to play as the console is situated on the
gallery directly opposite the organ. The voicing is bold, recognising the
need to project the full weight of tone from the north transept right
down the whole length of the Church.

The specification of the 2001 organ

Great Organ

Double Open Diapason 16 (H)
Open Diapason I 8
Open Diapason II 8
Hohl Flute 8
Principal 4
Harmonic Flute 4
Fifteenth 2
Mixture III (N)
Trumpet 8
Clarion 4 (H)
Swell to Great
Swell Octave to Great
Choir to Great
Choir Octave to Great
Choir Suboctave to Great

Swell Organ

Contra Gamba 16
Open Diapason 8
Rohr Flute 8
Echo Gamba 8
Voix Celeste 8
Gemshorn 4
Lieblich Flute 4
Mixture III
Oboe 8
Double Trumpet 16 (H)
Cornopean 8
Clarion 4 (H)
Superoctave Unison Off Suboctave

Choir Organ

Open Diapason 8 (H)
Viol d’Orchestre 8 (H)
Harmonic Flute 8 (H)
Dulciana 8
Concert Flute 4 (H)
Harmonic Piccolo 2 (H)
Clarinet 8 (H)
Orchestral Oboe 8 (H)
Tuba 8 (H)
Unison Off
Swell to Choir

Pedal Organ

Subbass (acoustic)
Open Diapason 16
Double Bass 16 (H)
Bourdon 16
Principal 8 (H)
Bass Flute 8
Fifteenth (from No. 36) 4 (H)
Trombone 16 (H)
Tromba (from No. 39) 8 (H)
Great to Pedal Swell to Pedal Swell Octave to Pedal Choir to Pedal Choir Octave to Pedal
6 Divisional Pistons to each department 6 General Pistons 4 Reversible Pistons - Gt to Ped Gt & Pedal Sw to Gt combinations coupled
Sw to Ch General Cancel 8 level capture system.

Originally built by Norman & Beard 1905.
Rebuilt and enlarged by T. W. Fearn & Son 2001
H = ranks sourced from the 1901 N&B instrument at Haileybury College N = new pipework

© St Stephen’s Church | Charity no. 1131952 | St. Stephens Church, Southwell Gardens, London, SW7 4RL
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