Thanks to the generosity of many benefactors, the successful completion of fundraising for the Willcocks Memorial Appeal (in honour of Old Cliftonian Sir David Willcocks, 1919-2015) means that exciting work is now underway on the construction of the 12 32-foot Double Ophicleide extension pipes for the chapel organ.
The Willcocks Memorial Appeal took place last October and brought together Old Cliftonians, parents and College staff to celebrate the life of Sir David Willcocks and raise funds for a Double Ophicleide for the Chapel Organ. The event was hosted in the College Chapel and featured Cambridge University Organist Andrew Nethsingha, Cambridge Old Cliftonians Julia Hwang (violin) and Charles Matthews (piano), the Gents of St John’s College Cambridge, as well as Year 12 student Henry Metcalfe, the new Sir David Willcocks Organ Scholar.
In the photographs here, direct from the workshop of organ builders Harrison and Harrison in Durham, we can see the construction of the resonators, the actual lengths of pipework that produce the tremendously low and penetrating pitch. It is traditionally the lowest CCCC pipe, sounding four octaves below middle C, that is inscribed with the individual maker's name. Around 80 metres of pipe will be needed to complete the set of twelve resonators. On-site work in the College Chapel will begin during the summer months.