South Sydney Uniting Church
(formerly known as Waterloo Uniting Church)
56A Raglan Street, Waterloo
J.W. Walker & Sons 1877, 1m., 9 sp.st., mechanical
From SOJ August/September 1987:
The splendid 1877 J. W. Walker organ in this church is one of the finest and best-preserved small historic organs in Sydney. It has a particularly fine quasi-classical case of stained and varnished pine housing richly stencilled front pipes. Its tonal qualities are considerably enhanced by the excellent acoustics of the Waterloo church.
The instrument was originally built for the Palmer Street Presbyterian Church in East Sydney but with a restructuring of inner-city ministries, the church was closed for services and the organ restored and moved to the Methodist property at Waterloo in 1976.
The organ was constructed with one spare slide and this was filled by a Horn Diapason supplied by Walkers in 1882. For over a century it has survived without significant alteration, although the bellows was converted to single-rise operation at some stage. The instrument retains its original cone tuning.
The task of removing and restoring the organ in 1976 was entrusted to Pitchford and Garside who carried out the work according to the highest standards of organ preservation. Since the restoration the organ has required almost no tuning or maintenance and surely this is a indication of the basic soundness of the old Walker work and a good reflection on the integrity of the restoration work.
The specification is as follows:
Wald Flute Treble
Stop'd Diapason Bass
* unoriginal label; originally designated as Fifteenth 2
Mechanical action throughout
3 composition pedals
Hitch-down swell pedal
Photos: Alan Caradus (Oct 2012)