Christ Church Anglican Church

Central Avenue, St Lucia

Hill, Norman & Beard, Melbourne, 1969 (o/n Q780)
2 manuals, 6 ranks extended & mixture, electric action
Rebuilt, enlarged & removed from west end to east end of church 1994
W.J. Simon Pierce, Brisbane
2 manuals, 25 speaking stops (10 ranks extended & mixture), electric action




Christ Church Anglican Church, St Lucia
[Photograph by Howard Baker (1990s)]

 

Historical and Technical Documentation by Geoffrey Cox
© OHTA 2012 (last updated January 2012)

The foundation stone of the present Christ Church was laid on 4 March 1962 by Reginald, Archbishop of Brisbane, and the building was opened and dedicated by The Right Reverend Ian Shevill, Bishop of North Queensland, on 29 September 1962.1

This building has never provided a very favourable acoustic environment for music, but the parish has fostered a strong musical tradition since the late 1960s.2 The organ was built in 1969 by Hill, Norman & Beard, of Melbourne (Order No Q780),3 who were also engaged around this time to rebuild the organs at Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Fortitude Valley and St John's Anglican Cathedral, Brisbane.

The original specification at St Lucia comprised just 6 ranks of pipes extended over two manuals and pedals, as well as an independent mixture stop, the whole employing direct electric action. The pipework was originally located in two small cases, without any façade pipes, on the west wall over the main entrance to the church. The detached console was located at the east end, adjacent to choir stalls arranged in collegiate style in front of the sanctuary.4

The organ was rebuilt and enlarged in 1993-94 by W.J. Simon Pierce of Brisbane, who at the same time moved it to the east end of the church and provided new casework of Queensland Maple. Apart from the improved acoustic location, and general re-voicing, the main aim was to reduce the reliance on borrowing. While the stop list of the organ was little altered, much of the borrowing between stops an octave apart was removed. This was achieved by providing four additional ranks of pipes, three of which (ranks B, D and F in the specification below) came from the organ that had been removed from the Anglican Church of the Ascension in Morningside a couple of years earlier.5






The re-located and rebuilt organ at
Christ Church Anglican Church, St Lucia
[Photographs by Howard Baker (1994 or later)]

There has been some confusion concerning the origin of the added pipework at St Lucia: The Morningside instrument was one of three organs built around 1930 by C.W. Leggo at Hurlston Park, NSW, using pipework from the 1888 Centennial International Exhibition organ built by George Fincham, which was installed in 1905 at the Lyceum Hall in Sydney.6 This pipework, therefore, does not date from the 1880 Fincham organ at the Exhibition Building in Carlton, as has been suggested.7 Furthermore, the Hohl Flute 4ft at Morningside had been added at Hurlston Park to replace an earlier Oboe stop,8 and its origins are unclear.

The three ranks from Hurlston / Morningside are therefore as follows:

Rank B: Stopped Diapason 8ft (divided at Hurlston Park) - Fincham 1888
Rank D: Principal 4ft, extended to Open Diapason 8ft - Fincham 1888
Rank F: Hohl Flute 4ft - replaced an 1888 Fincham Oboe at Hurlston Park, c.1930 or later

In the specification below, ranks A, C, E, G and H, along with the Great Principal 4ft (originally extended to 2ft) and Great Mixture III, all date from the Hill Norman & Beard organ of 1969.

GREAT
Open Diapason
Stopped Diapason
Principal
Nason Flute
Nazard
Super Octave
Mixture

SWELL
Rohr Gedact
Viola
Gemshorn
Lieblich Flute
Nazard
Doublette
Larigot
Octavin
Trumpet

PEDAL
Subbass
Octave
Flute
Viola
Super Octave
Octave Flute
Nachthorn
Trumpet
Octave Trumpet

COUPLERS
Swell to Pedal
Great to Pedal
Swell to Great
Swell Sub Octave
Swell Octave
Swell Sub to Great
Swell Octave to Great

8
8
4
4
2-2/3
2
III


8
8
4
4
2-2/3
2
1-1/3
1
8


16
8
8
8
4
4
2
8
4










A
B

C
C
A



H
E

F
H
E
H
E
G


B
D
B
E
D
C
F
G
G











[ex Morningside; Fincham 1888; formerly rank C]



[formerly borrowed from Principal 4ft]




[rescaled 1994]
[new 1994; formerly borrowed from Viola 8ft]
[ex Morningside, c.1930 or later]







[tenor register ex Morningside; bottom 12 pipes, 1969]
[ex Morningside; Fincham 1888; formerly rank A]
[ex Morningside; Fincham 1888; formerly rank C]

[ex Morningside; Fincham 1888; formerly rank A]
[ex Morningside, c.1930 or later; formerly rank C]












Swell tremulant
Direct electric action
Detached stop-key console
Radiating concave pedalboard
Balanced swell pedal
Compass: 61/32
4 thumb pistons to Great Organ
4 thumb pistons to Swell Organ
Swell to Great reversible thumb piston
Swell to Pedal reversible thumb piston
Great to Pedal reversible thumb piston
Great to Pedal reversible toe piston.9



Console of the 1969 Hill, Norman & Beard organ
slightly modified in 1994
[Photograph by Howard Baker (1994 or later)]

The rebuilt instrument at St Lucia was dedicated on 8 May 1994 by the Rt Revd Phillip Newell, Bishop of Tasmania, who had been instrumental in having it installed in 1969, when he was Rector of the parish.


______________________________________________________________________

1 Plaques at the church entrance, cited 2009.

2 Ian McKinley, 'An Organ Transplant: A Brief History of the Organ at Christ Church, St Lucia,' The Organ Voice, vol. 21, no. 4 (Winter 1994), pp. 9-16.

3 OHTA News, vol. 14, no. 2 (April 1990), p. 26.

4 Specification noted by G. Cox, 1971.

5 McKinley, pp. 12-15.

6 Enid Matthews, Colonial Organs and Organbuilders (Carlton: Melbourne University Press, 1969), pp. 189, 215.

7 McKinley, pp. 12, 14.

8 Specification noted by G. Cox at Morningside, 1973; Personal communication to G. Cox from Fr R.H. Miles, Morningside, 1973.

9 Specification noted by G. Cox, 2009; Additional details from McKinley, p. 16.