Pipework, Console and Fittings


      St Mary, Finedon, Northants
Interior pipe by 'Father' Bernard Smith
                   circa 1705

    St Martin, Bremhill, Wiltshire
             William Allen 1810
     (Restored by Peter Bumstead)

Damaged pipes should be carefully repaired, always by an expert pipemaker. Replacements for missing pipes should be made of similar materials and to similar details of construction as the original. The original means of tuning should be preserved where this survives. If it does not survive, it may be restored provided that this requires no further alteration to the pipes. Tuning slides should not be fitted if this involves the cutting of any pipe. Efforts should be made to discover the original pitch and temperament of the organ and to restore this when possible. A change to the pitch of an organ to suit a passing fashion is to be avoided. Voicing should be limited to the re-regulation of repaired pipes and the voicing of any replacement pipes in the style of the originals. Wholesale replacement of reed tongues should be avoided.

Console and fittings
Keyboards, pedalboards, stop knobs and other controls and accessories should be maintained in, or restored to, their original state. Original key coverings, felts and bushings should be retained wherever possible and if they must be replaced, every effort should be made to use similar materials and techniques of construction. Ivory-surfaced keyboards can usually be repaired with second-hand ivory. Replacement of ivory key surfaces by plastics imitations is unacceptable. The replacement of original pedalboards by pedalboards of different design leads to serious difficulties as it is usually impossible to place them in the standard relationship to the manual keys without major changes both to mechanism and to visible cabinetwork.

Mains-voltage wiring should not be fixed to the organ case. In particular, unsightly switches or light fittings should not be attached to the cabinetwork of the organ console but be located sensitively elsewhere. The console should be treated like any other piece of good furniture.


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