A Brief History by Jim Buckland

I bought the BBC theatre organ (late Empress) purely for material that I needed in the extension to the existing organ. A little over half of the instrument was used and the remainder I disposed of. A significant quantity of material came from the USA in particular the Style D Trumpet which came from the original George Wright studio organ in Pasadena and the Robert Morton Tibia was from the last George Wright studio organ (Philharmonic) and was considered to be the Tibia that he added to the Fox San Francisco. The Horn Diapason was from a Wurlitzer church organ in Pennsylvania, the Kimball Trumpet was from the Kimball demonstration organ in Chicago and the Wurlitzer Oboe Horn (rebuilt by Trivo) was from a theatre near Chicago. You will see therefore that almost as much material as that from the BBC organ came by special selection from the USA. Additionally the Wurlitzer Clarinet came from one of the Granada organs. The 16′ Solo Viol and Celeste and the 32′ Tibia came from Chicago. One important feature is that all of the additions are the genuine article and not something from the junk store.

The Worthing Wurlitzer therefore is NOT the amalgamation of two organs. This would be something that I would never be a party to. It was extremely well thought out with design contributions from Lyn Larsen, Ron Rhode, Hector Olivera, Jim Roseveare, Walt Strony and Simon Gledhill. The design and unification was the subject of a very serious amount of consideration and the final expenditure at the time of opening was considerable, since then a great deal of money has been spent on tonal finishing, post construction adjustments and regulation.


The Worthing Wurlitzer
The Worthing Wurlitzer (Photo from their Website)