Georgian Thomas Parker Organ
Many historic classical organs have been lost, so we are extremely fortunate to have a reconstructed Thomas Parker organ from 1766.
The wind blown pipe organ, dated to 1766, was reconstructed from original pipework, soundboard and manual discovered in an 1873 Walkers pipe organ destroyed by fire in 1989.
The late 18th century Parker organ was restored and rebuilt in 2007 with a grant from
The National Lottery and The Friends of Leatherhead Parish.
organs past and present
In 1830 a small barrel organ was purchased for £140 by subscription and installed in a gallery in the tower. This was replaced in 1843 by a slightly larger organ. The organ came from Watford Parish Church and was installed by Walkers, a firm of organ builders. It was originally attributed to Snetzler, an 18th century German organ builder, however the organ hid another story.
In 1873, during the restoration of the Church, the so-called ‘Walker’ organ was enlarged and moved to a new organ loft above the Clergy Vestry in the North Transept. From 1885 to 1934 various repairs and maintenance was undertaken, but more restoration was needed in 1956. By 1983 the cost of maintaining the organ was too high, so an Allen digital organ was installed.
Out of the Ashes
An electrical fire in 1989 destroyed the digital organ, and the intense heat brought some of the ‘Walker’ organ pipes crashing down from the loft above. During the post-fire inspection to ascertain what could be saved, the truth about the pipe organ was uncovered.
The Walker organ incorporated some parts of the earlier Georgian organ from about 1766, which were attributed to famous organ builder, Thomas Parker.
With the help of The Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church and a grant from the National Lottery the Georgian organ was rebuilt by Goetze and Gwynn in 2007 and installed in the north transept. It remained there until it was moved to its new location in the Chancel as part of the 2020 Making History project.
Get In Touch
01372 362 544
(Staffed Wed-Fri 9am to noon)
The Parish Office, Parish Church Hall, Church Road, Leatherhead,
Surrey, KT22 8BD