Bourne Abbey Church


Bourne Abbey Organ

In 1834 there was a two manual organ by John Gray that cost £370.  The organ gallery at the west end was removed in January 1869, when the north aisle was extended and an organ chamber included at the east end, opening out into the Chancel.  A new organ was built by Gray and Davison, incorporating some pipework from the old one.  This organ of two manuals and pedals cost £280 and was opened on 10th July 1870.  Additions to the specification included a 4ft Flute on the Great in 1883 (replacing a Great reed).  A Vox Humana and a Tremulant were added on the Swell and the Swell Fifteenth removed and replaced by a Salicional (8ft, TC) in 1905.  At the same time, a 16ft Bourdon, also playable on the Pedals, was added to the Great.  A balanced Swell pedal was fitted in 1954.


In 1976 the organ was rebuilt by Bishop & Sons of Ipswich with Laurence Elvin as consultant.  The Pedal department was enlarged to six stops. The Bourdon of 1905 (from the Great) was made available additionally at 8ft pitch and the former Swell Open Diapason (which included some 18th cent. pipework) was transferred to the Pedal as an 8ft Principal, also available at 4ft, and a new 16ft Posaune added. The action was converted to electro-pneumatic – except for the 16ft Grand Open Diapason that remained mechanical.  On the Great, two new ranks were added to Mixture and the open 4ft Flute was replaced with stopped pipes.  The Swell soundboard was replaced by one of full compass, the Salicional increased in scale and revoiced, and a 2ft Gemshorn and 3-rank Mixture added.  The 8ft Oboe was extended with two new bottom octaves and became a 16ft Bassoon, the Cornopean revoiced and the Vox Humana discarded. Nicholas Pitts undertook restoration of the organ in 2001.


Despite its history, the character of the instrument has not changed.  It has been said that it was and still is an English organ of the mid-Victorian period, and as such is an organ par excellence for use in Anglican worship.  National Organ Register No. D03976.


The current specification is



Compass C-g3 (56 notes)

Double Diapason                         16ft

Open Diapason                              8ft

Stop'd Diapason                             8ft

Dulciana                                          8ft

Octave                                             4ft

Stopped Flute                                 4ft

Super Octave                                  2ft

Mixture                                           IV

Sharp Mixture                                 II



Compass C-f2 (30 notes)

Grand Open Diapason               16ft

Bourdon                                       16ft

Principal                                         8ft

Fifteenth                                        4ft

Flute                                               4ft

Posaune                                        16ft


Compass C-g3 (56 notes)

Clarinet Flute                              8ft

Saicional                                       8ft

Vox Angelica                               8ft

Principal                                       4ft

Gemshorn                                    2ft

Mixture                                         III

Bassoon                                      16ft

Cornopean                                   8ft




Swell to Pedal

Swell to Great

Great to Pedal



6 Composition pedals