Celebrating Chesterfield’s ‘King of Instruments’

Leonie Martin charts the remarkable history of one of the town’s hidden gems: one of the nation’s finest church organs.

TUCKED away at the top of Spencer Street is one of Chesterfield’s hidden Victorian gems: the beautiful Catholic Church of the Annunciation. Secreted within its Gothic walls at the top of a narrow spiral staircase is a musical masterpiece: the 1881 Father Henry Willis Organ. On the evening of Friday, November 22 – the feast day of St Cecilia, patroness of musicians – a special Inaugural Concert, performed by Dr Colin Walsh, Organist Laureate of Lincoln Cathedral, will celebrate this newly-restored treasure, 138 years after its glorious tones were first heard