£49,000 has been raised for our Organ Works!

Posted by on Monday, July 14, 2014 Under: Aylesford Organ

£49,000 has been raised for our Organ Works!

£49,000 has been raised for our Organ Works!

It has been quite a few weeks since the last update, and in time a lot has been happening:

  • We have received all permissions for the works (including the Faculty)
  • The contract for the works has been signed with F H Browne (organ builders)
  • We have had a preliminary technical meeting with F H Browne
  • We have completed the Phase 1 fundraising!

On the fundraising, first of all an absolutely massive THANK YOU to everyone who has done so much in so many different ways to help us achieve what seemed an impossible target at the outset. So far we have raised £49,000, which will enable works to start on 8th September this year, with a scheduled completion just before Christmas (assuming no issues arise during the works). F H Browne are providing the free loan of a small pipe organ whilst our organ is being built / rewired (some of it off site at the organ works); this will appear in church sometime during the next month or so.

F H Browne is a well-established firm (1871), with a steady stream of work and a large number of organs under their care for tuning / maintenance; their website (www.fhbrowneandsons.co.uk) provides an interesting insight into their history and current projects.

The Appeal
The £49,000 raised will pay for all the projected work on the organ apart from replacing the blower, but the PCC has decided not to continue active fundraising for this. Nevertheless, any donations towards an "Organ Kitty" to help pay for future work would always be welcome! The Brook Concert Orchestra return on Harvest Sunday, 5th October, at 3pm. They were excellent last year and as then they are giving the concert entirely in aid of the Organ.

Visit to Ash in Canterbury
Later this year, I will be organising a visit to Ash (near Canterbury), which (apart from transport costs) will be a free day out for anyone who wants to look round the organ works. If you are interested, please let me know so that I can get some idea of numbers!

Organ History

In 1988, just 3 years after arriving here, I researched and wrote a history of Aylesford organ. I am now updating this as there is a huge amount more to be told. I intend publishing this early in 2015, to coincide with the completion of the rebuild and the 150th anniversary of the organ. I would like to acknowledge all the work done on this appeal, and am therefore planning to produce an alphabetical list of names (only) of donors in the booklet. I know some people will not want this, so please do let me know as soon as possible (and certainly no later than the end of October) if you would prefer to be included in the "many other anonymous donors" line instead.

2015 activities
Finally, we are planning a series of recitals of organ music (some quite light) by visiting organists during 2015; these will include one or two well known Cathedral organists, so the organ will be well and truly 'put through it's paces'! More on this later this year / early 2015.
Again, thank you for getting us to this point - this is a fantastic legacy to future generations at Aylesford!

Michael keays

In : Aylesford Organ