Work has begun on re-installing the refurbished Lewis Organ at St Marie’s Cathedral. The organ dates back to 1875, was a gift to the Cathedral by 15th Duke of Norfolk and is the ONLY large Lewis organ in a public location, which remains tonally unaltered.
Repairing and replacing the organ will cost £200,000 in total, but, thanks to a Heritage Lottery Fund grant, the church only has to raise £38,000 towards the work. By June, £3,300 had been raised from parishioners and more fund raising initiatives are planned.
According to independent organ adviser, Paul Hale, the number of tonally unaltered original T C Lewis organs is tiny. It is believed that only three remain and only two of those date from 1875 – one at Studley Royal, and the other in St Marie’s.
St Marie’s is the larger and more impressive example with 1,500 individual pipes ranging from 16ft feet to half an inch in height.
Refurbishment has been carried out jointly by organ builders Nicholson & Co and A J Carter, with Nicholson’s being responsible for the specialist design and installation of the new mechanical action, the refurbishment of the soundboards and chests, and the repair and regulation of the pipework.
Donations to the organ restoration fund can be sent to Cathedral House, Norfolk Street, Sheffield, S1 2JB. Gift Aid envelopes are available in the Cathedral and, if you are a UK taxpayer, using the gift aid envelopes will increase the value of your donation by 25 per cent.