Leeds Town Hall Organ

3 Manual Gray & Davison (1858) / Abbot & Smith

Leeds Town Hall console

Single Screen

Single screen / Laptop screen view

Dual Landscape screens

Dual portrait screens

The Organ.

This magnificent instrument was originally built by Gray and Davison of London to William Spark and Henry Smart’s ambitious design of nearly 100 stops with many technical innovations. The organ was first played publicly when the building was opened in 1858 by Queen Victoria but the instrument was not completely finished until the following year.

The Leeds Town Hall organ is one of the finest and largest instruments of its kind in Europe. Measuring 12 metres high by 12 metres wide and weighing 40 tonnes, it has been a key part of the story of music making in the city, dominating the Victoria Hall musically and visually through countless performances, providing pleasure to hundreds of thousands of people since Leeds Town Hall opened in 1858. In recent times, every Monday between September and April, an audience of 200-400 regularly attend free organ recitals given by leading organists from this country and abroad, it is an integral part of Leeds International Concert Season and features each year in Leeds International Film Festival.

The Leeds Town Hall organ has undergone a series of rebuilds and alterations, the last being in 1972, since when it has been a highly successful recital and orchestral instrument but nearly 50 years of heavy use have taken its toll and Leeds Town Hall organ is in now under threat. Without urgent attention the city was at risk of losing a truly unique wonder of Victorian design and an important piece of Leeds heritage.

The organ renewal project, currently underway, will see the instrument undergo extensive and far reaching work, the familiar casework and some of the pipes will be retained and repaired but all of the organ’s mechanism, console and about a third of its 6500 pipes will be made new.

The closure of Leeds Town Hall in November 2021 for two years was necessary to provide the once in a lifetime opportunity of completely repairing and renewing this incredible instrument and secure its future for generations to come. The £1.8 million organ renewal project is bringing together the leaders in the field of organ renovation to oversee this exciting and incredibly complex work – something which has never been attempted on this scale before.

The Leeds Town Hall organ was originally built for the people of Leeds and once complete, the renewed instrument will be one of the finest concert organs in the UK – one that will last for the next 150 years for future generations to appreciate and enjoy.

All samples from this instrument were taken a matter of DAYS before the work with Nicholson's of Malvern commenced to strip down the organ as it was. We have gone to some length to carefully preserve this instrument digitally, as this is now the only way it can be enjoyed and played. The organ is still currently being overhauled and renewed. Leeds Town Hall remains closed whilst this work continues.

Leeds Town Hall, 2021

The Digital Samples

Pipe organs were designed to sound their best in the acoustic space for which they were built.

We have taken great care so that the samples and acoustic model for this organ reproduce the instrument as faithfully as possible.

This organ was sampled from a single point, at some elevation by a single stereo pair of high quality professional microphones. We recorded this slightly away from the organ chamber to allow correct pipe speech and to avoid any excessive mechanical noise. Unlike many other digital sample sets, where organs can often be overcorrected, we have endevoured to leave this organ exactly as recorded and kept any processing of the samples to an absolute minimum. This is to preserve the tonal character of this organ as accurately as possible.

Apart from the pedal division, this organ was entirely sampled using our new RoboSampler.

Audio Engineering - Charlie Brown
Leeds Town Hall, 2021

24 Bit Stereo and 5.1 surround sound (Studio Quality). Ranks recorded in 2021

Tuning 440Hz
The team at Great Organ would like to sincerely thank the whole team at Leeds Town Hall for their warm welcome, hospitality and patience whilst we sampled this organ.

Organ Specification

Rank Stop Name
16'Double Trumpet
IVSharp Mixture 4 Ranks
1Twenty Second
V-VIIGrand Chorus
1 1/3'Nineteenth
2 2/3'Twelfth
4'Nason Flute
5 1/3'Quint
8'Flute-A Pavillion
8'Open Diapason I
8'Open Diapason II
16'Double Diapason
16'Gedeckt Pommer

Rank Stop Name
8'Basset Horn
16'Contra Fagotto
1 1/3'Octave Twelfth
2 2/3'Flute Nazard
4'Open Flute
8'Rohr Flute
8'Geigen Principal
16'Lieblich Bordon
-Super Octave
-Sub Octave
-Unison Off

Rank Stop Name
1 3/5'Tierce
1 1/3'Larigot
2'Block Flute
2 2/3'Nazard
4'Koppel Flute
4'Spitz Flute
8'Stopped Diapason
8'Unda Maris
-Swell to Positive

Rank Stop Name
32'Contra Bombarde
2'Super Octave
5 1/3'Twelfth
8'Bass Flute
10 2/3'Quint
16'Gedeckt Pommer
16'Open Metal
16'Open Wood
32'Open Diapason
32'Sub Bass
-Positive to Pedal
-Swell to Pedal
-Great to Pedal

Latest software -1st January 2023

Download Leeds Town Hall Organ v3.0.0.0

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Compatible with

Windows x64

Windows 10 / Windows 11

  • Windows 10/11 x64 - Intel i5 6th Gen or better
  • 16Gb+ RAM (ideally DDR4)
  • 128Gb+ SSD or M2.SSD
  • Ideally using dedicated soundcard
Apple Macintosh

Apple OSX Intel based systems

  • OSX 10.14+ (Mojave) x64 - Intel based x64
  • 16Gb+ RAM (ideally DDR4)
  • 128Gb+ SSD or M2.SSD
  • Ideally using dedicated soundcard
Linux Intel x64 distributions

Linux Intel x64 distributions

  • Debian/Ubuntu based distributions v20.0+ - x64 base (Linux Mint / Ubuntu)
  • 16Gb+ RAM (ideally DDR4)
  • 128Gb+ SSD or M2.SSD
  • Ideally using dedicated soundcard

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