2014 - No Details, please contact Chris
Gibson if interested.
7th. A visit has been arranged to the Theatre Organ Heritage Centre of The
Lancastrian Theatre Organ Trust @ Alexandra Rd Peel Green, Eccles M30
The Trust’s objective is to save redundant theatre organs from
cinemas that have been demolished and find a new home for them. Amongst
those that have been saved are the Wurlitzer organs from the long gone
Paramount (Odeon) and Gaumont theatres in Manchester and the Davenport
The organ from the Odeon was installed in the Free Trade Hall and was
there until it was closed and turned into a hotel. It was installed in
the ballroom of Stockport Town Hall and can now be heard on Monday
evenings and Wednesday afternoons when it is played for dancing.
The visit will comprise a concert on the Wurlitzer organ in the
Heritage centre @12.00pm followed by a talk about the trust and its
work and in particular about the original designer Robert Hope-Jones.
Robert Hope-Jones was an inventor holding over 40 patents for the
electrical control of pipe organs. He started a company making organs
employing these patents.
In later years he emigrated to America where he joined the Wurlitzer
company and the rest is history.
For further information see the trust’s website:
If you wish to hear the organ in the Town Hall there is a concert
on Friday 21st September @ 7.30pm. Other concerts take place on
Monday Lunch times 12.30-1.30pm.
I will be away from 29/9/12 and be back by 19/10/21.
inaugural meeting of the
Engineering & Science group was held at The Anson Engine Museum in
Poynton. The museum is devoted to heat engines from the earliest
atmospheric engines to the present day. Following a talk by the
co-founder and present chairman of the charity, Geoff Challinor, the
tour started with the three dimensional diorama of Poynton in 1900.
This model has been 3 years in the making and still on going and
includes the oldest tree in Poynton. We could have spent all afternoon
with the model but continued with the conducted tour.
Starting of with The Rattling Monsters, some early atmospheric
engines, the first of which was Crossley No.1, built in 1877. These
were followed by gas engines of increasing power and smaller size and
diesel engines of which the first was a reproduction of Mirlees No.1
which was the first in Britain and third in the world. The original
No.1 is in the Science Museum.
The visit concluded with the starting and running of two gas engines.
25th October.Visit to AVRO Heritage Centre.
Eight of us assembled at the Heritage Centre at the Woodford factory
for a morning of the history of A.V. Roe and much of the British
Locally the factory is known as the home of the Lancaster and the
Vulcan bombers but this is only the tip of the iceberg. Over the
100years life of the company there have been over 70 designs dating
from the days of before powered flight to the 60s.
The first big seller was the Avro 504, a fighter and sold to airforces
all over the world and became the plane “that taught the world to
Between the wars the company became part of The Hawker Siddley Group
but the design responsibility stayed at Woodford with Roy Chadwick as
chief designer, a position held until his death in a crash in test
flight of an Avro Tudor in 1947. During this period, amongst the
aircraft produced were the Anson, Manchester, Lancaster, Lincoln,
Shackleton and Vulcan.
In addition to these there were a number of development projects which
never reached production as the money was not forth-coming from the
government. Included were a vertical takeoff aircraft in 1941, a
super-sonic bomber and a Vulcan conversion to an airliner called the
In the death of Roy Chadwick the country lost a designer of
international standing equal in stature to Barnes Wallace, with whom he
worked on the bouncing bomb.
A very interesting visit which will be well worth a return when the new
Heritage Centre is ready.