The Snetzler organ, funded by public subscription in the second half of the 18th century, was completed in 1777 and first played at an opening recital on 21st December of that year. It was built by John (Johann) Schnetzler (1710 - 1785) who trained and worked in Passau, Germany, before moving to England.
The original organ was a three manual instrument without pedals. The great and choir organs had 57 keys, spanning a compass from low GG to high e3, whilst the Swell had a shorter compass, low G to high e3, and 46 keys.
The organ was originally located on a Gallery to the East end of the Tower Crossing, but has been relocated and added to a number of times over the years. In 1843, the organ was removed from the gallery and rebuilt in the North Transept and a small pedal organ added (1 speaking stop; Gt to Ped & Ch to Ped couplers).
In 1890, the organ was completely rebuilt and substantially enlarged. The image on the right, probably from the late 19th or early 20th century, shows the organ after this rebuild, located at the North side of the chancel. In 1972, the organ was once more rebuilt and greatly enlarged using pipework from an organ removed from a chapel in Stockport. A detached console was added.
Sadly, the organ is no longer in use. Snetzler’s organ case and much of the original pipework remain in place, and the original console is visible.
The Snetzler located in the North chapel, with the console in the chancel. (Late 19th Century)