Norfolk Organists' Association Events

For details of any of the future or past events below, please e-mail the Events Secretary.

Future Events

All events are free for NOA Members (unless stated otherwise). There is an admission charge of £5 per head for non-members.

Saturday 17th March 2018 - AGM, Buffet Lunch, and Recital

11.30am at Rosebery Road Methodist Church, Norwich.

£7 per head for lunch.

Past Events

Saturday 17th February 2018 - Desert Island Discs

Held at St Cuthbert's Church Hall, Wroxham Road, Sprowston, Norwich, NR7 8TZ.

Chris Duarte of St. George's Music Shop fame (amongst other accolades) very kindly agreed to be our castaway this time round. Ron Watson once again presided as Grand Inquisitor.

Saturday 13th January 2018 - Quiz & Chips

Held at Holy Trinity Church, Essex St, Norwich. Michael and Pamela Flatman reprised their roles as Quizmasters General in our traditional curtain raiser to a new year of events.

Wednesday 22nd November 2017 - Choral Evensong

Held at Norwich Cathedral. Once again there was opportunity for members to play the Cathedral organ after the service.

Saturday 14th October 2017 - "Reminiscences of Francis Jackson: His Life and Music"

Dr. Francis JacksonHeld at Princes Street URC, Norwich.

Ron Watson presented a lecture recital to celebrate the centenary of his friend, the legend that is Dr. Francis Jackson.

Tea & cakes were available afterwards for £2 per head.


Read a write up of the event by Henry Macey.


The photograph is of Francis with his telegram from Her Majesty, reproduced with permission of Mr. Edward Jackson.

Saturday 16th September 2017 - Organ DVD Show

This took place at the Electric Picture Palace, Blackmill Rd, Southwold, IP18 6AQ.

Electric Picture Palace

We paid a return visit to the exquisite recreation of an early cinema that is the Electric Picture Palace ( to watch two of the critically acclaimed organ DVDs by Fugue State Films namely "The Elusive English Organ" (charting the history of the English organ from Tudor times to the early 19th century) followed, after an interval, by the second part of a trilogy of films entitled "Widor: Master of the Organ Symphony". Part II pays particular attention to the organ symphonies 5, 6, 7, and 8.

The event cost £5 per head and concluded at 5pm.

Read a write up of the event by Henry Macey.

Photograph reproduced by kind permission of King’s Lynn Community Cinema Club.

Saturday 22nd July 2017 - President's Day

Held at Wroxham Parish Church. After coffee on arrival at the church, Richard Bower gave a talk about the organ (II/P 17) and a recital after which members were invited to play too. At 1pm there was an informal 'President's Lunch' at Salhouse Lodge (NR12 6HD).

Saturday 29th July 2017 - Young Organist's Recital

Held at Wymondham Abbey. Our young organist this year is Ollie Neale, a sixth former at Langley School and one of the current Organ Scholars at St. Peter Mancroft, Norwich.

Thursday 13th July 2017 - Organ Recital: Paul Hale

The last of three Restored, Renewed & Inspired organ recitals at Aylsham Parish Church, to celebrate the restoration of the 1911 Norman & Beard Organ by Henry Willis & Sons Ltd. Admission £5, at the door. Wine and refreshments were served afterwards.

Thursday 22nd June 2017 - Organ Recital: David Dunnett

The second of three Restored, Renewed & Inspired organ recitals at Aylsham Parish Church, to celebrate the restoration of the 1911 Norman & Beard Organ by Henry Willis & Sons Ltd. Admission £5, at the door. Wine and refreshments were served afterwards.

Saturday 17th June 2017 - Aylsham Organ Day

Held at Aylsham Parish Church. A day of events open to all in celebration of the restoration of the 1911 Norman & Beard organ (III/P 27).

Saturday 13th May 2017 - A Barn Full of Organs

Held at Church Farmhouse, Church Rd, Deopham, NR18 9DT. Another welcome opportunity to explore and play Geoff Sankey's remarkable collection of organs including an important new addition since our last visit.

Thursday 11th May 2017 - Organ Recital: Henry Macey

The first of three Restored, Renewed & Inspired organ recitals at Aylsham Parish Church, to celebrate the restoration of the 1911 Norman & Beard Organ by Henry Willis & Sons Ltd. Admission £5, at the door. Wine and refreshments were served afterwards.

Tuesday 11th April 2017 - Organ Visit

Starting at St. Botolph's Aldgate, Aldgate High St, London, EC3N 1AB.

The organ at St. Botolph's (III/P 21) was built by Renatus Harris in 1704 and superbly restored/reconstructed to near original condition by Goetze & Gwynn in 2006. As such it is arguably the oldest playable church organ in Britain.

After lunch we regathered at Christ Church Spitalfields (E1 6LY) to hear and play the wonderful Richard Bridge organ of 1735 (III/P 37). The largest organ in Britain when built this hugely important instrument was unplayable for almost 60 years until the recent, meticulous restoration/reconstruction by William Drake Ltd. The well known recitalist, Gerard Brooks has been appointed as the organ's curator and was on hand to give us a short demonstration recital before overseeing our own playing efforts.

These are the two most important surviving early 18th century organs in England. They are within 10 minutes walk of each other and Liverpool Street Station. We booked a two hour session at each instrument.

Saturday 18th March 2017 - AGM, Buffet Lunch, and Recital

Held at St. George's Colegate, Norwich. Following our Business Meeting we had a Buffet Lunch in the nearby Old Meeting House after which Anne Page (BMus, Hon ARAM, and Professor of Harmonium Studies at the Royal Academy of Music) gave an Organ/Harmonium recital back in St. George's.

Saturday 18th February 2017 - Desert Island Discs

Held at The Lecture Room, Rosebery Road Methodist Church, Rosebery Road, Norwich.

Dr. Michael Nicholas, FRCO and former Master of Music at Norwich Cathedral gamely agreed to be our castaway. Ron Watson was once again the Grand Inquisitor.

Saturday 14th January 2017 - Quiz & Chips

Michael and Pamela Flatman were our new quizmasters for our traditional and popular opening event of the new year, held at Holy Trinity Church, Essex Street, Norwich.

Wednesday 23rd November 2016 - Choral Evensong and Organ Visit

Held at Norwich Cathedral. There was an opportunity for NOA Members to play the organ after Evensong (courtesy of David Dunnett).

Monday 24th October - Friday 28th October 2016 - Return to to Groningen

The wondrously gifted Sietze de Vries was once again our Organist/Guide for our third trip to Groningen, with excursions into Ost Friesland (Germany) to hear and play some of the remarkable historic organs there.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 24th September 2016 - Organ Visits

We started at St. Mary le Tower, Ipswich, Suffolk. The organ here is considered to be one of the finest in the county. Originally built by Henry Willis & Sons in 1964 it was enlarged in by Bishop & Son in 1984 and 1997 (III/P 48).

After lunch we regathered at St. John the Baptist, Felixstowe to hear and play the organ built by Boggis in 1992 and enlarged by Bishop & Sons in 2014 (III/P 40).

Saturday 20th August 2016 - Young Organist's Recital

Held at St. Margaret's Church. Lowestoft. Jonathan Palman, organist at Redenhall Parish Church was our 'Young Recitalist' this year. Followed by tea & cakes.

Saturday 16th July 2016 - Coach Outing to Hampton Court Palace

Our day included an afternoon visit to the Chapel and organ with Carl Jackson, the Palace Organist.

Saturday 18th June 2016 - President's Dinner

Held at the Park Farm Hotel, Hethersett. Dr. Alan Thurlow, former Master of Music at Chichester Cathedral, was our guest speaker.

Saturday 14th May 2016 - Organ Factory Visit

Richard Bower very kindly invited us to come and explore his organ building works at the Bower & Co Factory, Weston Longville. There was a barbecue after the site tour.

Saturday 16th April 2016 - Organ Visits

We began our day at Redenhall Parish Church where we played the fine and historically important 1843 west gallery organ by G.M. Holdich (II/P 24). After lunch we regathered in the Chapel of All Hallows Convent, Ditchingham. After a short talk about the Convent by Dr. Nick Groves we were free to play the organ there by Hill, Norman & Beard (1955) and Richard Bower (2004).

View photo gallery.

Saturday 19th March 2016 - AGM, Buffet Lunch, and Recital

Held at Cromer Parish Church. John Stephens, NOA member and Organist at Great Yarmouth Minster gave the recital.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 27th February 2016 - Raise Your Game

Based at St Peter Mancroft Church, Norwich and Norwich Cathedral. An inspirational hands-on, day-course for organists of all ages and all standards.

See the Royal College of Organists website for more details.

Saturday 20th February 2016 - Desert Island Discs

Priors Hall, Norwich Cathedral Close. We are very grateful indeed that The Very Revd Dr Jane Hedges, Dean of Norwich agreed to be our next castaway and allowed us the use of the beautiful Priors Hall for the event.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 16th January 2016 - Quiz & Chips

Held at Holy Trinity Church, Essex St, Norwich. Ron and Isabel Watson gamely agreed to be our quizmasters once again for our traditional curtain raiser to a new year of events.

Tuesday 24th November 2015 - Choral Evensong and Organ Visit

Held at Norwich Cathedral. After evensong here there was an opportunity for NOA members to visit the organ loft and play the Cathedral organ.

Saturday 17th October 2015 - An Illustrated History of Norman & Beard

Held at Aylsham Parish Church. As the 1911 Norman & Beard organ at Aylsham moves towards its restoration we were privileged to have John Norman present this illustrated talk on the history of the great, formerly Norwich-based organ building company established by his forbears.

Followed by tea and cake.

Saturday 19th September 2015 - Organ Visit to Wymondham Abbey

This gave us an opportunity to play the fine, historic James Davis organ in this glorious church.

Thursday 27th August 2015 - Young Organists' Recital

Held at North Walsham Parish Church, featuring young performers Sam Aldersley-Williams and Harry Sullivan.

Monday 27th July to Saturday 1st August 2015 - IAO Congress

After too long an absence the IAO's annual Congress returned to Norwich. Full programme and booking details can be found online at:

Saturday 6th June 2015 - Organ Visit to Soham Parish Church and Ely Cathedral

We met at Soham Parish Church, Cambridgeshire, where we heard and played the organ at Soham recently rebuilt by Richard Bower. Then we attended Choral Evensong at Ely Cathedral. There was an opportunity for NOA members to play the Cathedral organ after the service.

Saturday 9th May 2015 - The East of England Organ Day: A Parisian Extravaganza!

Held at the Royal Hospital School Chapel, Holbrook, Suffolk. Alongside recitals by Tom Bell (organ) and Gemma Beeson (piano), the celebrated 'Organiste Titulaire' of Notre Dame in Paris, Olivier Latry conducted a masterclass in improvisation and concluded the day's proceedings with a recital on the chapel's mighty organ featuring works by Boëly, Franck, Guilmant, and Vierne's Symphony no.2.

Saturday 25th April 2015 - The Preludes & Fugues of J.S. Bach

Held at St. Thomas's Church, Earlham Road, Norwich. Following his previous presentations on the Clavierübung Part III and the 'Eighteen' Chorales, Harry Macey turned his attention to Bach's preludes and fugues in this lecture/recital.

Saturday 21st March 2015 - AGM, Buffet Lunch, and Recital

Held at the Old Meeting House, Colegate, Norwich. Our business meeting was followed by a buffet lunch after which Philip Luke (Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church) gave a recital on the intriguing and historic OMH organ (II/P 12) now skilfully brought back to life by the devoted efforts of our own John Plunkett.

Saturday 10th January 2015 - Quiz and Chips

Held at Holy Trinity Church, Essex Street, Norwich. Ron and Isabel Watson very kindly agreed to be our quiz-masters once again for our traditional curtain-raiser to the New Year.

Saturday 7th February 2015 - Desert Island Discs

Held at the Song School, Norwich Cathedral Cloisters. Having avoided his planned shipwreck in February 2014 due to unforeseen professional commitments Ashley Grote, Master of the Music at the Cathedral graciously agreed once again to be our castaway on the mythical island.

Wednesday 19th November 2014 - Choral Evensong and Organ Visit

Due to circumstances beyond our control this event sadly had to be cancelled.

Saturday 25th October 2014 - The Development of the Organ and its Music

Held at St. Thomas's Church, Earlham Road, Norwich. Richard Townend, long time organist at the Wren church of St. Margaret Lothbury in the City of London, gave us this talk on a fascinating and wide-ranging topic. Refreshments were available afterwards.

Saturday 4th October 2014 - Organ visit to Westleton, Snape, and Framlingham, Suffolk

NOA member Andrew Campbell is the organist at St. Peter's Church, Westleton. He let us inspect the new west gallery organ there (III/P 26), currently being completed by Peter Bumstead in the English Classical style incorporating mid-19th century pipework by James Corps of Norwich from the organ at Little St. Mary's Church, Cambridge.

After lunch (pub!) we proceeded to Snape church to inspect the organ Peter built there in 1999/2000 (II/P 17) and which inspired Andrew's choice of Peter for the work at Westleton. We then drove to the glorious church of St. Michael, Framingham where Sandra Cartwright met us and gave us access to the celebrated organ there (II/P 20). Built originally by Thomas Thamar in 1674 for Pembroke College, Cambridge the beautiful case still contains a good deal of pipework from the 17th and 18th centuries. This is a historic instrument of national importance.

Saturday 9th August 2014 - Young Organists' Platform Concert

Held at St. Peter Mancroft Church, Norwich. Our Young Organists' Recital this year featured four young organ students, Harry Sullivan, George Jefford, Sam Aldersey-Williams, and Luke Lindsey, pupils of Julian Haggett and Lawrence Tao. Tea & cakes were served afterwards.

Sunday 27th July 2014 - Friday 1st August 2014 - Organ Tour to Groningen

Following our highly successful visit in April 2012, Sietze de Vries was once again booked as our Organists/Guide for our return tour to hear and play historic organs (including four built by Arp Schnitger) in Groningen, Oostwold, Godlinze, Eenum, Krewerd, Appingedam, and Leeuwarden.

Saturday 28th June 2014 - A Barn Full of Organs

Held at Church Farmhouse, Deopham. Some NOA Members may recall a most pleasant visit to the home of fellow member, Geoff Sankey some years ago. A recent addition to his organ collection housed in his adjoining barn is a German pipe organ now reconstructed within a historic English organ case. Geoff very kindly agreed to welcome us once more to his abode and enjoy his collection. The visit included a visit to Deopham church next door which houses a rather delightful little Nicholson organ of c.1870 (I/P 9).

Saturday 17th May 2014 - The French Classical Organ and its Repertoire

Held at St. Peter Mancroft Church, Norwich. Following his recent attendance at a summer school centred on the unaltered François Henri Clicquot organ of 1783 at Souvigny, France, Julian Haggett (organist at St. Peter Mancroft) shared his passion for this music in a presentation/demonstration/masterclass utilising the 1984 Peter Collins organ at St. Peter's. This is one of the very few organs in East Anglia that can do proper justice to this distinctive and rewarding repertoire.

Saturday 26th April 2014 - Organ Visit to the Royal Hospital, School, Holbrook (near Ipswich)

William Saunders, the current President of the Suffolk Organists' Association is the Director of Music at the Royal Hospital School and he very kindly invited us to hear and play the mammoth 1933 Hill, Norman & Beard organ (IV/P 64) in the enormously resonant chapel there.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 15th March 2014 - AGM, Buffet Lunch & Recital

At St. Nicholas, Dereham. Proceedings began with our business meeting in the Church Hall followed by a buffet lunch. Our meeting concluded in the church itself where Tim Patient regaled us with a recital on the organ there (III/P 30). Originally rebuilt in 1874 by Hill & Son and restored in 1964 by Hill, Norman & Beard the current instrument was extensively rebuilt by Richard Bower in 1995 with a new Chaire organ containing pipework by Father Smith.

Saturday 1st February 2014 - Desert Island Discs

Held at Brooke Church Rooms. Ashley Grote, our planned castaway, was sadly unavailable to take part in this event but thankfully our immediate past President, Harry Macey very kindly agreed to share with us his choice of discs for the mythical island in Ashley's place.

Saturday 11th January 2014 - Quiz & Chips

Held at Holy Trinity Church, Essex St, Norwich. Ron and Isabel Watson were the quizmasters for our traditional and much loved curtain-raiser to a new year of events.

Wednesday 27th November 2013 - Evensong (with Full Choir) at Norwich Cathedral

Evensong was followed by the opportunity to visit the organ loft with David Dunnett to play the Cathedral organ.

This was a 'live' broadcast by the BBC.

Saturday 19th October 2013 - Organ Visit to St. Edmund's Church, Downham Market

The Vicar of St. Edmund's kindly invited us to explore and play the 2 manual, 22 stop organ extensively rebuilt by E.J.Johnson of Cambridge in 1977.

Saturday 21st September 2013 - An afternoon with Ron Watson

Held at Brooke Church. With the aid of recordings and a 'live' performance or two, Ron entertained and enlightened us with a talk about some of his compositions.

Saturday 17th August 2013 - Young Organist's Recital

St. Thomas's Church, Earlham Rd, Norwich. Our young recitalist this year was Hannah Parry-Ridout. Hannah played for us a few years back but returned to entertain us following her studies at the St. Giles Junior Organ School, the Royal College of Music, and Royal Holloway College. Tea and homemade cakes were served afterwards.

Saturday 20th July 2013 - President's Day Outing to London

NOA members visited London. First stop was St. George's Hanover Square, where Mr. Simon Williams, the church's Organist and Director of Music, introduced us to the recently installed North German Baroque style organ by the American firm of Richards, Fowkes and Co (III/P 46). After lunch we visited the nearby Grosvenor Chapel (South Audley St) to hear and play the 1991 William Drake organ built in the English Classical style (II/P 24).

View photo gallery.

Saturday 22nd June 2013 - Overstrand and Cromer

Members visited and played the organs at St. Martin's, Overstrand and Cromer Parish Church.

Saturday 11th May 2013 - An Afternoon with Dr. June Nixon

At St. Thomas Church Hall, Earlham Road, Norwich. Dr. Nixon, the Organist and Director of Music at St. Paul's Cathedral, Melbourne, Australia since 1973 and an eminent musician and composer, spent an afternoon entertaining us during her latest visit to England.

Saturday 13th April 2013 - Organ Visit Cancelled

Unfortunately, due to recurring problems with the organ at St Stephen's Church in Norwich that have developed in recent weeks, it was not possible for us to go ahead with this visit.

Saturday 23rd March 2013 - AGM, Buffet Lunch, and Organ Recital

At St. Nicholas, North Walsham. Continuing with our now familiar format we started proceedings with our business meeting (in the Church Hall). A buffet lunch followed and our meeting concluded with a recital by Richard Bower on the organ he himself has restored in recent years.

Saturday 16th February 2013 - Desert Island Discs

At the Church Room, Brooke Church. Following two abortive attempts to consign Rev. Canon Jeremy Haselock (Precentor of Norwich Cathedral) to Ron Watson's desert island, Jeremy's choice of discs was finally revealed!

Saturday 12th January 2013 - Quiz & Chips

This took place at Holy Trinity Church, Essex Street, Norwich. Harry Macey was our Quizmaster once again as we enjoyed our traditional curtain-raiser to a new year of events.

Saturday 17th November 2012 - Desert Island Discs with Rev. Canon Jeremy Haselock

Sadly this event did not take place due to unforeseen circumstances.

Tuesday 23rd October 2012 - Choral Evensong at Norwich Cathedral

NOA Members were invited to attend evensong as a group. The Cathedral choir were singing prior to their half term break. Members met for tea/coffee in the Refectory beforehand.

Saturday 29th September 2012 - Church Room, Brooke

Louis Vierne; A Celebration of his Life and Works: 2012 marks the 75th anniversary of Vierne's untimely death in the organ loft at Notre Dame, Paris. Martin Cottam presented a talk on the life and work of this important musician. He played a rich selection of recordings to illustrate Vierne's highly individual compositional voice, giving as much weight to the unjustly neglected works for instruments other than the organ as to those for the organ itself.

Saturday 11th August 2012, St Nicholas, North Walsham

Young Organist's Recital: Our recitalist this year was Ben Miller, a PhD Biochemistry student at the John Innes Centre who is currently one of the organ scholars at St. Peter Mancroft in Norwich. Organ (III/P 40) by Hill Norman & Beard with recent additions by Richard Bower.

Saturday 21st July 2012, President's Dinner

We returned to Park Farm at Hethersett for our President's Dinner where our Guest of Honour and after-dinner speaker was Carl Jackson, Organist of Her Majesty's Chapel Royal, Hampton Court, talking about the work of the Chapels Royal.

Saturday 23rd June 2012, Organ Tour to King's Lynn

We gathered in the church of St. Nicholas to explore and play the highly regarded organ of 1900 by Henry Willis & Sons (II/P 21). After lunch we visited the Minster church of St. Margaret's, where the resident organist, Adrian Richards, introduced us to the organ there (III/P 44) and members were able to play this celebrated instrument which contains a number of ranks by Snetzler.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 12th May 2012 - St Margaret's Church, Lowestoft

Organ Visit: David Bunkell, NOA Membership Secretary and Organist at St. Margaret's welcomed us to explore and play the 41 stop (III/P) Hill, Norman & Beard organ of 1937 inside this imposing medieval church.

Tuesday 10th - Friday 13th April 2012 - Organ Tour to Groningen, Holland

We travelled from Norwich to Groningen by car via the Harwich - Hook of Holland ferry to and from the various venues in Groningen province. The wonderfully gifted Sietze de Vries was our organist guide to the six historic instruments we visited which included three organs by Arp Schnitger.

Saturday 31st March 2012 - AGM, Buffet Lunch, and Recital at Aylsham Church

Our AGM followed the format that has become familiar in recent years. The business part of proceedings was followed by a buffet lunch, then our two youngest Committee members, David Ballard and Matthew Bond, performed a half hour recital each, including a short organ duet.

Saturday 25th February 2012 - Desert Island Discs

Held at the Church Rooms in Brooke. Martin Cottam, our Events Secretary, kindly agreed to be our castaway following the last minute withdrawal of the Rev. Canon Jeremy Haselock due to Cathedral commitments. Ron Watson, as ever, acted as Grand Inquisitor.

Saturday 14th January 2012 - Quiz and Chips

Our traditional and ever popular opener for a new year took place at the Holy Trinity Church, Essex Street, Norwich, with a new Quizmaster at the helm. Our President, Harry Macey very kindly supplied a goodly selection of brain-teasers and a suitable local establishment provided the all important fish & chips.

Saturday 26th November 2011 - Outing to Central London

NOA member Philip Luke has been organist at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church (235 Shaftesbury Avenue) for 25 years. In that time he has overseen the complete rebuilding of the organ there and the establishment of a highly successful regular recital series.

Philip invited us to join him for the 4pm recital given by our local favourite, David Dunnett after which there was a light buffet. Following the buffet, NOA members had the opportunity to play the organ for themselves for an hour or two. The large 3 manual west gallery instrument is comprised mainly of ranks from two redundant JJ Binns organs, the work being undertaken by BC Shepherd & Sons who have added the 32ft Sackbut and 16ft Trombone in the pedal along with some new pipes in the re-scaled mixture stops.

Earlier in the day at 2pm there was an opportunity to hear and play the brand new organ by Späth Orgelbau (13 II/P) in the nearby Swiss Church (79 Endell St, Convent Garden). Resident organist, Peter Yardley-Jones was on hand to welcome us and demonstrate the instrument.

Saturday 15th October 2011 - Attleborough Church

In place of our postponed trip to Groningen we visited and played the organ in the church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Attleborough. The organ was rebuilt in 1962 by Arnold, Williamson & Hyatt and is a fine example of their work. Restored in recent years it is a sizeable instrument spread across 3 manuals and pedals.

Saturday 17th September 2011 - Liszt, Composer and Transcriber

Brent Palmer celebrated the work of the great Hungarian, the bi-centenary of whose birth falls in 2011, at the Church Rooms in Brooke.

Tuesday 16th August 2011 - Young Organist's Recital

The recital took place at St. Margaret's Church, King's Lynn.

Our young recitalist this year was Matthew Searles, who was born in 1991 and lives in Peterborough. A former chorister at the cathedral there, he now has lessons with Andrew Reid, the organist at Peterborough Cathedral. He is also the Organ Scholar at Doncaster Minster where he accompanies the choral services on the celebrated 5 manual Schulze organ there. In September, having sat his exams for the ARCO Diploma during the summer, he takes up the prestigious Organ Scholarship at Royal Holloway, University of London.

The 45 stop organ at St. Margaret's is famous for containing a significant amount of Snetzler pipework within the fine, carved and gilded casework by the same builder.

Saturday 23rd July 2011 - President's Day

Held at St. Thomas' Church, Earlham Road, Norwich. Our new President, Harry Macey organised a rich and fascinating programme exploring aspects of J.S. Bach's creative genius.

After coffee and intros we viewed a DVD entitled 'J.S.Bach: Allein Gott in der Höhe sei Ehr', then Dr. Nicholas Groves MA, BMus, PhD, FRHistS, gave a talk on Lutheranism in the context of Bach's life and work. Following lunch in the Church Hall, Harry gave a lecture/recital on the 'Eighteen Preludes' BWV 651-668.

Saturday 18th June 2011 - Outing to Breckland

We visited and played three small but very interesting and important organs, all of which have been recorded for the HOSA project - All Saints, Hilborough (Bevington, 1857, IIP, 14 stops), St. George's, Gooderstone (J.C.Bishop, 1835, IP, 7 stops) and St. Leonard's, Mundford.

Mundford Church was transformed in the early 20th century by the work of Sir Ninian Comper which included the erection of a spectacular rood screen. He also designed the beautiful organ case which sits atop the screen. The instrument itself is very unusual. Built by Harrison and Harrison in 1912 it has 3 manuals and pedals but only 12 speaking stops.

Saturday 21st May 2011, St. George's Colegate, Norwich - 'L'Orgue Expressif'

Anne Page is Professor of Harmonium Studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London. She used her own 19th century Alexandre Harmonium during her presentation about this unjustly neglected instrument for which the likes of Franck, Widor, Guilmant, Vierne, and Langlais wrote much fine music. The 19th French Harmonium is a very different creature from the more familiar 'American' organ that resided in so many English Victorian and Edwardian parlours. The event concluded with the opportunity to take part in a masterclass.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 16th April 2011, St. George's RC Church, Sprowston Rd, Norwich

A Rodgers Digital Organ Revealed. In recent years an impressive 3-manual and pedal digital organ made by the American company, Rodgers has been installed at St. George's RC church. Possessing a predominantly French stop-list it speaks into a splendidly spacious acoustic.

Resident 'titulaire', Paul Allen, was on hand to talk about the project and demonstrate this highly interesting instrument before members had the chance to play it for themselves.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 26th March 2011, URC Princes St, Norwich at 11.30am - AGM, Buffet, and Recital

Saturday 19th February 2011, Brooke Church Rooms at 2.30pm - The Heart of the Matter

Following his highly entertaining and illuminating talk on compositional 'sins' last February, Ron Watson returned to bring enlightenment on the subject of rhythm in music.

Saturday 15th January 2011 - Quiz and Chips

The annual Quiz and Chips evening took place at Holy Trinity Church, Norwich. Martin Cottam posed the brain-teasers one last time before handing the role of quizmaster to another in 2012.

Saturday 13th November 2010 - "Desert Island Discs"

Held at St. Andrew's Church, Eaton, Norwich.

We were enormously privileged to have Dr. Francis Jackson as our 'castaway' this year. Now in his nineties, Dr. Jackson is a hugely respected figure in the world of music. Formerly the Master of Music at York Minster he has received considerable acclaim over many decades as a performer, teacher, and composer. Prompted by Ron Watson's questions Dr. Jackson related stories about his long life and achievements and shared his choice of music to sustain him during his sojourn on the mythical island.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 9th October 2010 - "A Treasure Chest Unlocked?"

The event took place at the Old Meeting House, Colegate, Norwich.

For many years the organ inside the Old Meeting House has presented something of an enigma. The casework certainly dates from the 17th century, but who built it and for where? When did it find its way into this venue and just what manner of pipework lurks within? Is treasure to be found there?

For some time John Plunkett, as a labour of love and employing the lightest and most sensitive of touches, has been returning the organ to playable condition, carefully recording and documenting his findings each step of the way. He shared with us what he has so far unearthed and members had the opportunity to play the instrument and judge for themselves whether treasure has indeed been unearthed in what John was happy to subtitle 'a Restoration Comedy'.

View photo gallery.

Saturday 18th September 2010 - Lecture/recital on J.S.Bach's Clavierübung Part 3

The event took place at St. Thomas' Church, Earlham Road, Norwich and was led by Harry Macey, President Elect of the association, who presented a lecture recital on this monumental collection "consisting of various preludes on the Catechism and other hymns for the organ... [dedicated to] music lovers and particularly for connoisseurs of such work for the recreation of the spirit".

Saturday 7th August 2010 - Young Organist's Recital

The recital took place at The Octagon Chapel, Colegate, Norwich.

This year's recitalist was William Warns who has just completed his first year as Organ Scholar at Fitzwilliam College Cambridge and is no stranger to the organ loft at the Octagon.

Saturday 17th July 2010 - President's Dinner

The dinner took place at The Ellingham Suite, Park Farm Hotel, Hethersett. View photo gallery.

Saturday 19th June 2010

We visited The Electric Picture Palace in Southwold.

Here we watched 'Martinikerk Rondeau', a fascinating and beautiful documentary by Fugue State Films. The film investigates the spectacular organ heritage of the Dutch city of Groningen and its surrounding province, arguably home to the greatest concentration of historic organs in the world.

Light relief came in the form of an interval complete with suitably entertaining accompaniment provided by our President on the cinema's own organ as we relaxed and nibbled on our ice creams.

Saturday 17th April 2010

We visited organs in the parish churches at Blofield, South Walsham and Acle. View photo gallery.

Saturday 27th March 2010

Our Annual General Meeting was held at St. Thomas' Church, Earlham Road, Norwich, followed a by buffet lunch and organ recital.

Saturday 20th February 2010

Renowned local composer, and editor of the Norfolk Organists’ Association’s quarterly publication "The Journal", Ron Watson led an event entitled Tritones and other musical sins.

Saturday 16th January 2010

The annual Quiz and Chips evening took place at Holy Trinity Church, Norwich.

November 2009

David Watson led an afternoon about Purcell’s life and music.

October 2009

The day started with a visit to St. Agnes’ Church, Cawston where the organ has recently been restored by Richard Bower.

After lunch we gathered at All Saints, Bawdeswell where we were able to hear and play the new electronic instrument by Johannus. This instrument has been built into the former pipe organ and was ably demonstrated by James Lilwall, organist at the Church and a former President of the association.

The day finished with refreshments at James’ house.

September 2009

Tim Patient led a lecture/recital exploring J.S.Bach’s Orgelbüchlein.

August 2009

The annual Young Organist Recital was given by student member of David Ballard. The event was well attended and David is certainly a very talented player.

July 2009

The President’s Day. View photo gallery.

This started at Blythburgh Church where members were able to play the organ recently built by Rodney Briscoe of Boggis and Co. Some members had seen this instrument in the workshop while it was being built.

After lunch, the day moved to the Electric Picture Palace in Southwold, where excerpts of DVDs were shown. There was an interval, during which the President appeared through the stage floor, playing the keyboard in true cinema organ style.

The final venue of the day was at St. Edmund’s Church, Southwold, where members were able to play the Arnold, Williamson and Hyatt instrument of 1966.

May 2009

The day started at Cley Church where there was a chance to play the two-manual and pedal instrument rebuilt by Bower and Company in 2002.

Following lunch we re-convened at Wiveton Church to play the one-manual and pedal instrument built by Holdich for the Great Exhibition of 1851.

The final venue was Blakeney Church, where the two-manual and pedal instrument re-built by Hill, Norman and Beard was available for people to play.