The Organ

Music

Norwich Cathedral has one of the largest pipe organs in the country, with the organ featuring an incredible 5,767 pipes that range from 32 feet to just an inch long.

It is also rather unique in having a Cymbelstern, a star connected to six bells which, in particular, adds an extra special festive touch to music at Christmas!

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An organ has been one of the musical centrepieces of the Cathedral’s worship for centuries - the first known references to an organ here date from the 14th century, and since then numerous famed organ builders (including Dallam, Renatus Harris, Byfield and Bishop) have been associated with instruments at the Cathedral.

In 1899, a new five manual organ was built by Norman and Beard but it was badly damaged by fire during a dramatic Evensong on 9 April 1938.

In 1940-42, the organ was rebuilt by Hill, Norman and Beard and the impressive casework by Stephen Dykes Bower added in 1950.

Throughout 2022 and 2023, after more than 70 years of providing music for daily worship, the organ underwent an extensive rebuild to preserve it for future generations.

Throughout 2022 and 2023, a complete rebuilding and reorganisation of the organ was undertaken by Harrison and Harrison organ builders of Durham.

This saw the removal and overhaul of nearly all of its several thousand pipes and the internal layout of the instrument was redesigned to achieve a more even distribution of sound throughout the Cathedral. The console was being replaced and technology updated to ensure that the organ is fit for purpose for many decades to come.

The work was completed in summer 2023 and a special series of Organ Reborn! concerts took place in November 2023 to celebrate the return of the organ.

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Following the return of the Cathedral's organ, we are looking forward to resuming organ recitals in 2024.

As soon as the information is available, details of the latest organ recitals will be available on our Events page.

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