The Organ

The first organ at Christ Church was built by Alfred Fuller and opened on 24 November 1889. It was initially sited on the right wall of the chancel where space was extremely constricted and it was moved to the right transept in 1898. The façade pipes (including the wooden pedal pipes at the end of the case) were elaborately stencilled.

It was rebuilt in 1934 by Hill, Norman & Beard (Australia) Pty Ltd (order number V25) who converted the original mechanical action to tubular-pneumatic with an attached stopkey console. At this time the façade pipes were covered in gold paint. It was removed in 1972 and the parts dispersed.

Alfred Fuller organ taken between 1889 and 1898 (JRM)

Open Diapason 8
Lieblich Gedeckt 8
Claribel 8
Dulciana 8
Harmonic Flute 4
    Swell Sub Octave to Great
    Swell to Great
    Swell Octave to Great

Violin Diapason 8
Salicional 8
Celeste 8
Principal 4
Piccolo 2
    Sub Octave
    Unison Off

Bourdon 16
    Great to Pedal
    Swell to Pedal
Compass: 56/30

Its replacement was designed to provide adequate support to the liturgy and the congregation, and to provide a clarity and variety of tone appropriate to the performance of the classical organ repertoire. Built by the Sydney organbuilder, Roger H. Pogson, it has a solid cedar case of classical design, incorporating burnished tin pipework, and fully mechanical key & stop action. Widely used for recitals and teaching, this instrument has exerted a wide influence upon the music of Melbourne. It was the first two-manual modern mechanical action organ, designed along classical principles, to be installed in a Melbourne church. [2]

The specification of the organ was drawn up by the organist at the time, Edward King with the advice of Sergio de Pieri. The organ was built largely through the generosity of Mrs. Isobel Finchett, in memory of her late husband Albert Leslie Finchett, and by gifts, large and small from the congregation and the public. The Cymbel pipes are the gift of John Larter, in memory of his late wife Eileen Larter. The reed stops were the gift of the organist, Edward King. The consultant to the Committee was Sergio de Pieri. The project commenced in April 1967, and came to fruition in April 1972.

The 1971 Pogson organ in the north transept. Photo credit: unknown

The specification of the current organ is as follows:

Gedackt 8
Principal 4
Sifflute 2
Mixture III
Dulzian 8
    II-I (by catch pedal)

Gemshorn 8
Rohrflute 4
Principal 2
Quint 1⅓
Cymbel III
Sesquialtera II

Sub-bass 16
Principal 8
Choral-bass 4
Fagott 16
    I – Ped (by catch pedal)
    II-Ped (by catch pedal)

Action: Mechanical
Pressures: Great 60 mm, Positive 50 mm.
Builder: Roger H. Pogson Pty. Ltd., Sydney. Date of Opus: 1971.

[1] Victorian churches : their origins, their story & their architecture, edited by Miles Lewis. East Melbourne: National Trust of Australia (Victoria), 1991, p61