Welcome to BIOS


       St Lawrence Whitchurch
            Edgware, Middlesex

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The British Institute of Organ Studies (BIOS) encourages and promotes the study of the pipe organ, including the history and design of the instrument and its music. It owns the National Pipe Organ Register and is the listing body for historic organs. BIOS is effectively the amenity society for the British organ.  It lobbies Government, Historic England and other national bodies on behalf of the instrument. BIOS is a registered charity No. 283936. 

A brief introduction to the organ, with information on some significant instruments plus sound files of the instruments in Tewkesbury Abbey and Liverpool Cathedral, can be found on the explorechurches website. CLICK HERE

A Video Guide to the Organ was recorded at Holbrook School by Tom Bell and Richard Brasier. CLICK HERE to visit. A more extensive guide was recorded at Gloucester Catherdral by Jonathan Hope. CLICK HERE to visit

Playing the pedal keyboard -  Go tell it on the Mountain  -   CLICK HERE

Twelfth-century pipes discovered in the Holy Land   To find out more CLICK HERE

A revised edition of the BIOS advice note Sound Advice - The Care of your Organ has been issued.   CLICK HERE to download.

BIOS News & Services


Next Event       

Celestial Harmonists 

- Music and the Herschels

10.30 for 11.00 Friday 30 September 2022  

Museum of the Building of Bath  (former Countess of Huntingdon's Chapel, Bath)   


  • The National Pipe Organ Register has a new appearance.  It is hoped that members will find it easier to read and use

The National Pipe Organ Register (NPOR) aims to list details of every organ in the country.  For more information about the NPOR CLICK HERE. For direct access to the NPOR CLICK HERE. BIOS welcomes updates and corrections which should be sent to npor@bios.org.uk The National Pipe Organ Register is free of charge to users but costs money to provide. Please make a Donation -  CLICK HERE  for an online donation or send a cheque, payable to The British Institute of Organ Studies, to Adrian Mumford, 63 Atbara Road, Teddington TW11 9PA.


  • The Making of an English Organ Builder: John Nicholson of Worcester  Richard Nicholson (1788-1861) sent his oldest son John (1815-95) to Worcester, where he founded a business whose output represents some of the finest and, at times, the most adventurous of Victorian organ-building. By James Berrow. Hardback 464 pages.   Website price £29.20 incl UK p&p.  To place an order CLICK HERE


  • Organ Works explores the organ, its history, its musical structure, its appearance and its mechanism. This hardback book by John Norman features over 200 photographs and line drawings. Website price inc UK p&p £49.50. To place an order CLICK HERE
  • BIOS Journal 44  is now available. Edited by David Baker. BIOS members receive free copies. Non-members can purchase from the website - CLICK HERE                                                                                         
  • The Andrew Freeman book In Search of Organs. Hardback 308 pages 234 full-page organ case photographs. Edited by Katharine Pardee. Shop price £40.    BIOS website price £35. CLICK HERE to buy. Individual photographs can be accessed from this website (CLICK HERE) or from the National Pipe Organ Register.
  • Organ Books Four titles pubished by 'At the Sign of the Pipe' are now available for online purchase via this website. They are: A Reluctant Convert - The Life and Times of George Maidweill Holdich, by Rodney Matthews; Six Centuries of Organ Building in Devon, by Nigel Browne; The Organ: A Most Elegant and Beautiful Instrument by Martin Renshaw, and Toccata and Fugue in D minor BVW 565  - a work by J.S.Bach ? by Rolf Dietrich Claus. For further information CLICK HERE

  • The Leffler Manuscript   REDUCED PRICE  A unique collection of stop-lists compiled around 1800 and attributed to Henry Leffler. The last few copies of the hardback facsimile edition are reduced to £25 plus postageCLICK HERE      


  • Public organ available for anyone to play. Following the sucess of the pianos in St Pancras Intenational, a one-manual and pedal organ has been installed at London Bridge Station. The Henry Jones instrument (c.1890) has come from the now-closed Whetstone, London, URC church, where it had previously replaced an electronic imitation. Its installation at London Bridge was organised by BIOS member Martin Renshaw.


  • The Historic Organ Sound Archive now includes some new video recordings accessible via YouTube. To see an introduction to the Historic Sound Archive CLICK HERE  To access the catalogue  CLICK HERE                                                      
  • The Historic Organs at Risk Registesingles out important organs under threat. For more information  CLICK HERE.

  • Historic Organ Listing

BIOS is responsible for the listing of historic organs. To see the listing criteria CLICK HERE.  To access details of listed organsCLICK HERE    To see details of the latest Grade 1 listings CLICK HERE. For all the latest listings CLICK HERE.  Can you offer a suitable initial assessment of a new candidate for listing ?  For more details CLICK HERE   Nominations should be submitted to the co-ordinator at  hocs@bios.org.uk


  • The British Organ Archive (BOA) includes original order books and drawings, contemporary journals and publications and the Andrew Freeman photographic record. It is located at the University of Birmingham. For more information  CLICK HERE  Enquiries should be sent to the Cadbury Research Library staff at special-collections@bham.ac.uk


  • The BIOS Webstore  For copies of BIOS Journal (including issues right back to No1), copies of 'In Search of Organs', the Leffler facsimile and the Historic Organ Sound Archive CD,  - CLICK HERE


  • The full alphabetic index to BIOS Journal issues 16-25 is now available online  CLICK HERE   The alphabetic location  index to BIOS Journal issues 26-30 is now available online  CLICK HERE


  • Organ Music on-line is available 24/7.

Try it at www.orgelradio.eu  Thursday is Bach day !


Video clips of four of the organs on the Restoration Successes page are now available. CLICK HERE

Clips of two of the organs listed Grade 1 are now available. CLICK HERE


  • Training for organbuilders The Institute of Britsih Organbuilding (IBO) has announced the new three-year professional apprenticeship course to be run at the Building Crafts College, Stratford, London. Significant government funding has been provided to minimise costs to organbuilders.


  • Grants for Organ Restoration  BIOS is unable to give grants from its own limited resources but a Guide to Grants can be downloaded  CLICK HERE


  • 'Organ Transplants'  Details of secondhand organs for sale can be found on the IBO website  CLICK HERE to visit