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"A Fine Small (3-manual) Organ"

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A letter to the Editor, from Barry Phelps. Published in "The Organ" No. 154: October 1959, page 107.

Sir,-- Some of your readers might be interested to know that the tiny three-manual organ voiced and designed by the Rev. Noel Bonavia-Hunt as a practice and examination organ for the Victoria College of Music now stands in the beautiful little Norman church of St. Nicholas, Worth Maltravers, Nr. Swanage, Dorset.

Built by Foskett in the early 1920s, it has been renovated and re-erected in St. Nicholas's by Messrs. Gray & Davidson. It is a delightful instrument and has all the quality associated with the voicer's name.

The stop-list is:

8' Open Diapason (early English model)
8' Stopped Diapason (Schulze lieblich gedackt model)
4' Principal

8' Viola da gamba (fitted with conical bells)
4' Flauto Traverso

8' Dulciana (stopped bass)

16' Sub bass

Tubular-pneumatic action; pressure 3 inches; usual manual and pedal couplers.

The lowest octave of the principal has double languid zinc pipes made by Mr. Vincent Willis. The viola da gamba has a quality all its own. So, indeed, has the flauto traverso. Apart from our pleasure in having such an instrument in our church, it is just possible that we have rescued it from oblivion.

In his article on small romantic three-manual British organs, Julian Rhodes further writes: "A bold Great chorus, a colourful Swell, and an accompanimental Choir. The latter manual justifies its existence by facilitating dialogues of contrasted solo colours: Great Stopped Diapason and Swell Gamba; Great Principal and Swell Flauto Traverso, all accompanied by the Choir Dulciana."

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