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Whitechurch C. of I. Rathfarnam (Chancel Organ)

RegionCo. Dublin - County
Uploaded byMatthew Breen
W. Brown & Son, Dublin (18??)
Unknown (1966)

This was the first organ to be installed in Whitechurch and dates from the mid 19th Century. It was restored in 1966 but by 1993 (on the arrival of the new organist Stephen Adams) it was decided that the organ just didn't have what it took to lead the sizable congregation. This was due to the organ's situation in a badly designed, but very typical 19th Century chamber.
As it hasn't been seen maintenance in more than forty-five years and hasn't been played for twenty, the organ (having played it myself, briefly) is in a bit of a state!

Furthermore, when compared with the delightful Conacher in the gallery, the instrument sounds dull and heavy in tone. This is due to a number of factors: Lack of maintenance, the muffling effect of the chamber, poor voicing and (perhaps) an overly-high lead content in the pipes.

However, the two organs are a great asset to the church although I'm not sure if they could be played together at the current time, due to tuning issues (the result, at its best, would probably be that of an "Entire Organ Celeste" in stereo!). One can only feel quite dismayed that a fairly substantial parish organ like this is going to waste!

The action is mechanical throughout and most of the ranks are enclosed in a general swell (with an old-fashioned weighted pedal) leaving me unclear as to which manual is the choir (I presume it's the lower). Thus, the division names are editorial, only getting an idea by looking at the couplers.

Open Diapason8
Rohr Flute8
Lieblich Flute4
Viola di Gamba8
Lieblich Gedact8
Flute Harmonique4
Swell to Choir
Swell to Pedal
Choir to Pedal