The Abbey Organs
Looking west down the Nave, the vista is closed by the main organ, framed in the magnificent Tower arch, built in the 1440s, and standing upon an elegant stone bridge which bears the date 1903. The bridge replaced the eighteenth century wooden gallery which formerly projected into the Nave. The organ was given by Miss Ann Farmer in 1793, a condition of the gift being that the Parish should appoint and pay an organist. The instrument cost £687.3.0 including cartage and beer for the carters. It was built by James Davis of Preston, although the case bears the name of Longman and Broderip who acted as agents. It has three manuals and a pedal board, and the survival of the major part of the original eighteenth century pipe-work makes it an instrument of considerable interest. Many smaller organs of the period survive, but the near-complete survival of a late eighteenth century organ of this size is unusual. Equally important is the mahogany casework, which shows the ‘gothicising’ of the usual classical form of organ case. The instrument underwent major restorations in the mid 1950s and 1970s, with the casework being completely cleaned in 2007.