‘In the Latin Church the pipe organ is to be held in high esteem, for it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendour to the Church’s ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man’s mind to God and to higher things.’ Sacrosanctum Concilium 120

Rare amongst Cathedrals, St John’s has never had an Organ built specifically for the building. The old Pipe Organ by James Scott, a local Organ Builder was moved to the Cathedral at the end of the 19th Century to provide musical accompaniment to Masses in the Nave, before the building of the East End and Transepts. This organ failed in the 1980s, and a Bradford Computing Organ was installed.

After many years of use, however, the decision was made to upgrade the Bradford Computing Organ the work to rebuild the Organ was undertaken by Phoenix Organs. This organ has been redesigned to better support the development of music in the Cathedral, and to support the whole congregation adequately (something which was lacking with the Bradford organ). The Specification can be downloaded here.

In 2023, the Scott Organ was donated to The Pethericks, who are renovating a convent in France and were looking for an organ for the Chapel. They carefully dismantled and removed the pipe organ, transported it to the convent and are in the process of rebuilding and restoring the organ and hope to give the convent a new voice. In gratitude for the generosity of the Cathedral, and to support future fundraising efforts for our own organ, The Pethericks created a crowd funding page, donations can be made below.

We hope to raise money for the installation of an Organ best suited for the needs of the Cathedral over the next few years.