It is England's most precious early instrument. With these words, John P. Mander introduced the Adlington Hall organ into the scholarly debate. The instrument is one of the earliest British organs surviving in near original condition. The instrument was attributed to "Father" Bernard Smith, but the authorship as well as the year of manufacture remain enigmatic. Mander convincingly argued for 1693, the year of the marriage of John Legh to Lady Isabella Robartes, because the pair's coat of arms is displayed above the organ. The monogram of John Legh also appears in the centre of the gallery.
Although some markings on the pipes, reed shallots, soundboard, and rollerboards resemble the script used by Bernard Smith, other elements show influence of another prominent English organ builder, Renatus Harris, including the organ case details, the use of "communication" to make the Stopped Diapason available on both manuals, and separate mutations on G.O. Taken together, the evidence suggests someone who was working in a style that combined elements from both the Smith and Harris traditions. Stephen Bicknell has suggested Christian or Gerard Smith as possible builders of the instrument.
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English music from Adlington Hall: Croft: Voluntary in d-minor (Popup Player)