The organ of Christ Church was originally built by Henry Willis (“Father Willis”) in 1876 and installed in a Methodist chapel in Rawenstall, Lancashire. After becoming redundant there in 1935 it was used as a demonstration instrument in the Willis factory in Liverpool. It was purchased by the parish of Christ Church in 1945 and dedicated on September 25th that year. The Swell section proved too large for the organ chamber, so it was located in the first side section of the nave. However, this section was soon ruined by water damage and was removed. The console was originally located within the instrument.
A major reconditioning, rebuild and enlargement occurred over 1966-67. This was done by George Croft & Sons. An additional chamber was created above the vestry. The previous Choir section was remodeled into a Positive section and placed in the new chamber. This allowed the Swell section to be installed in the main chamber behind the Great and Pedal sections. A detached console was installed. The 3-manual instrument has 42 speaking stops.
Friends of the Organ of Christ Church
A group called Friends of the Organ of Christ Church has been formed for the preservation and use of the organ and to promote the appreciation of organ music in the community. Concerts are held on about three occasions each year, and feature New Zealand and international organists.
Subscriptions for membership are welcome: Single: $25.00 Double: $45.00
A subscription entitles members to a discount of $5.00 on each concert. Ask also about life membership.
If you are interested, please contact the parish office for a membership form.