Forum Cinema

Walsgrave Road & Longfellow Road,
Coventry, CV2 4AF

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PaulB52 on July 9, 2012 at 2:02 pm

I have recently been in contact with the new owners of the Conacher and have been told it is their intention to locate a suitable venue (Not an easy thing to do) and re-install the organ in as close to original condition as possible. Given that I spent a lot of time with it many years ago, i think this is fantastic news and I wish them every success.

PaulB52 on May 7, 2012 at 5:30 am

The surround was left in the cinema as the decision was made to restyle the console to match its new surroundings. A mahogany laminated blockboard was used and the original, as I recollect cream and green coloured, was cut up and used in the school woodwork department. On one occasion I discovered the section which covered the relays above the pedalboard, in the woodstore, cut in half, so I cleaned it up and re-united it with the console. When the school bought the organ, for £100, the installation team was allowed a further £100 to complete the job, so it was all done on a shoestring.

The group which went on to buy the Wellingborough Compton for Bilston Town Hall, had hoped to buy the Conacher. I think I am right in saying that the school accepted an offer for £350 from the people who took it to Kent where, it seems, it is in the hands of an organ builder. Having spent a few years caring for this temperamental beast, I hope it remains intact when re-installation eventually occurs. Unfortunately, a number of theatre organs have been shorn of their traps and percussions when ‘taking the cloth’!

MikeJC on May 5, 2012 at 9:06 am

The Forum’s Conacher organ didn’t have an illuminated surround. The console had a wooden surround shaped like an illuminated surround (very art deco with pleasing curves, similar to those manufactured by F. H. Pride) and painted white so as to reflect coloured spotlights playing on it. Real illuminated surrounds reputedly cost about as much as the organ itself, so I guess the circuit’s budget wouldn’t stretch as far as that. When the school bought the organ, this surround was scrapped, as it was reportedly riddled with woodworm.

PaulB52 on May 5, 2012 at 5:48 am

The Conacher organ was sold from the school around 2006 and today seems to be in the hands of a Kent-based organ builder. There is a possibility it may be re-installed in a church, but whether or not it will be complete is unknown.