© DDOA 2017
NORFOLK LANES and ORGANS
This year, our annual Veteran Cycle Club Camp took us to Reepham in Norfolk. Fortunately I had the foresight to consult Rodney (Rodney Tomkins ed.) regarding organs in the area; Rodney strongly recommended that I try to play the instrument in Little Walsingham of which more later.
We were blessed with lovely weather for the whole week, and enjoyed some excellent cycling. Our first ride took us to Aylsham, and after only a very short distance we came across the most impressive late Victorian church of St Michael the Archangel at Booton. It was quite a pleasure to find that most of the churches in Norfolk are open to the public all day and so a group of cyclists wandered into this splendid building. Magnificent wooden angels peered down from the sturdy wooden-
Nevertheless it was an attractive 2-
For those railway enthusiasts amongst us, I should mention that our ride then took us on to the Bure Valley Narrow Gauge Railway, where, with our path running alongside the track, some of the madder members decided it would be fun to try racing the train!
Amongst the highlights of our holiday was the organ at St Mary's, Little Walsingham, which we visited on the second day. Although a modern instrument -
Gt: 8, 8, 4, 4, 2 2/3, 2, 1 3/5, IV rks, Sw: 8, 8, 4, 2, 1 1/3, 1, 16, 8, Ped: 16, 16, 8, 8, 4, 2, II rks, 16, 8, 4.
Krebs, Walther and Bach all sounded splendid, the more so owing to the wonderful acoustics in the church. My only complaint was that I struggled to find a soft fluty stop for some passages, however I suspect that was my failing rather than the organ's. I was extremely fortunate to be able to spend the best part of 2 hours playing the organ, and would recommend this organ to anyone visiting the area.
After two organs in as many days, the children were suffering from a slight "organ-
For any bicycle enthusiasts amongst us, I should say that two of us were on pre-
I didn't expect to be playing anything on the third day, and the children dearly hoped we wouldn't find another organ, but I took some music just in case. This time we cycled on the disused railway from our camp at Whitwell Hall, which took us all the way to Norwich. We parked our bikes by St Andrews and Blackfriars Hall, where we visited a collectors' fair. The building used to be a monastery, but nowadays two of the halls are converted into concert halls. One had a grand piano on the stage, and (oh joy!) in the other, a large organ. I did not for a moment expect that I would be let loose on this instrument, so we merely passed through the hall and had a good look around the collectors' fair. Passing a reception desk on leaving, I casually asked whether it would be possible to play the organ, expecting the inevitable "No", however I couldn't believe my ears when the man said "I'll just get the key!"
And so the family were dragged back into the hall for me to have a go on this huge instrument. It was a Wm Hill, Norman & Beard large 3-
So, an organ a day so far, and a ride to Fakenham planned for day 4. The music was in the pannier, but I really didn't envisage getting it out again. Our ride took us past Great Ryburgh church -
So, off I went again, this time on a medium-
Day 5 (of 7) onwards was organ-