About the Society

The Cumbrian Society of Organists aims to promote awareness, skill and enjoyment in all aspects of the classical organ and organ music. The Society was formed in 1987 and is affiliated to the Incorporated Association of Organists.

Membership is open to anyone. We presently have about sixty members throughout Cumbria and surrounding districts, including players of all abilities from professionals to beginners, and others who do not play the organ at all but who enjoy organ music.

Our varied programme of events typically includes "organ crawls" to locations in and around Cumbria, training days for organists and choirmasters, and demonstration lectures on technique and repertoire. We also usually arrange an annual excursion further from home. There is no compulsion to play at any of these informal events, and certainly no scrutiny by fellow members.

In addition to these events, the Society supports a formal programme of training courses, run by our professional members, designed mainly for beginners and novice players. These cover such topics as using the pedals, choosing the correct stops, selection of voluntaries, basic hymn playing, and arrangement of modern hymns for the organ. We can advise on tutors and financial assistance for tuition, and we also administer a small bursary to assist with tuition fees.

The Society maintains records of members' availability to deputise for church services. We are particularly keen to encourage young organists and have arranged special events in recent years, such as an "open day" and young peoples' concert at Carlisle Cathedral.

In addition to this website, we send regular mailings to members and can include adverts for events in these. This service is free to members, but there may be a charge to cover copying for non-members.

The official subscription year for membership runs from 1st April to 31st March. The standard fee is presently £14. However, the rate for the retired or unwaged is £12, and the rate for persons under twenty-three years of age and in full-time education is just £4. There may be a nominal fee for some events, (to cover donations to our hosts), with a small surcharge for non-members.

If you would like to join the Society, or would like further information, please contact one of the committee members.