Oldest church in Wolverhampton to show off repaired pipe organ after delays

The oldest church in Wolverhampton is set to show off its pipes after almost two extra years of remaining silent.

The organ at St Peter's Church
The organ at St Peter's Church

The newly remastered pipes at St Peter's Church, Wolverhampton, underwent repairs to regain its original 1860s sound, but they were quickly shut down due to Covid restrictions on places of worship.

This Sunday will see the return of the long-missed organ in a grand performance prepared by veteran organist Callum Alger and conductor Peter Morris.

Also attending the event will be a full orchestra preforming Saint-Saens Organ Symphony and Handel's Organ Concert in F.

During Covid the church fell silent, with access to religious centres prohibited, but as churches began to reopen, Rev David Wright made plans to bring the music back. He said: "We are excited for everyone to hear the organ's original sound after the repairs and Covid."

The pipes were designed and installed in 1860 by legendary organ designer Henry Willis, at the time widely believed to be the foremost organ-builder of the Victorian era.

The repair work, which cost around £350,000, took 10 years to fund, with support coming from locals and celebrities like the late England cricketer, Baroness Rachael Heyhoe Flint.

The 1,000-year-old church has seen a number of issues over the years, from the pipe organ needing repairs, to a fear of forced closure over a million-pound city development in 2018.

Rev Wright said that he hoped the orchestra will showcase all the work done by the St Peter's Church staff and there will be a lasting repair to bring the church's sound back to its former glory.

The event will start at 4pm this Sunday with ticket prices set at £10 and are available at Trybooking with free admission for under-18s.

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