Bishop of Oxford dedicates new pipe organ in St Peter’s Wolvercote
9 December 2016 – Wolvercote, Oxford
“I’m delighted to be making my first visit to St Peter’s for the dedication of the fine new organ. The new organ is a sign of the commitment of the community of St Peter’s and Wolvercote to their parish church into the future. The whole Church is a sign of God’s grace and blessing in this community”.
Dedicating the organ will mark the end of St Peter’s ten-year Development Project to renew its buildings and facilities for church and community use. The organ was designed and handcrafted by Robin Jennings of Dorset – based Jennings Organs who called the project his “Magnus opus”.
Mr Jennings estimates that fewer than ten new pipe organs are now commissioned in the UK every year. The Wolvercote instrument is even rarer. Built to last more than 100 years, it is fully mechanical, shunning the use of electronics which would drastically reduce its lifespan.
Over £200,000 was raised in about 30 months to fund the project. Revd Charles Draper, Vicar of St Peter’s comments:
“We are delighted with the new organ, a beautiful piece of craftsmanship which makes a wonderful sound. It is a great credit both to the organ builder and to all those in the church and community who have worked so hard to bring this about. We look forward to it serving the church and the community for many years to come – as well as being an educational resource for future generations of new organists.”
Local organists have already praised the quality of the instrument. Simon Neal, Wolvercote resident, harpsichord technician and Assistant Organist at St Michael’s Summertown has this to say:
“This is an important new addition to the Oxford organ scene and I hope it will attract players to visit from both within Oxford and from afar.”
The Inaugural Recital of Oxford’s newest organ will be given by David Bednall, leading choral composer, Organist of the University of Bristol and Sub Organist at Bristol Cathedral, on Saturday 25 February 2017 at 7.30pm.