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Santa Maria

Santa Maria

Attadale Santa Maria




Name of institution Santa Maria College
Type of institution Residential day college for girls
Street Address Moreing Road
City Attadale
State Western Australia
Postcode 6156
Country Australia
Name of building Chapel
Name of room Church sanctuary
Dates of the building 1956
Architect’s and builder’s names
Special architectural features Spanish mission
Special fittings Stained glass windows
Other location information When the Sisters arrived in Perth in 1846 they opened the first Mercy school in Australia and first Catholic school in Perth.  Located on the current site of Mercedes College, Victoria Square education was provided for both day and boarding students. 

By the 1930’s demand for boarding places had increased to such an extent that the Mercy Superior decided to build a new school in what was then the bushland of Attadale.  A competition was launched in 1936 for the design of the new College.  The winning design proposed a Spanish influence to reflect the Sisters connection and arrival with Spanish Benedictines in 1846.  The initial structure of the College, today’s administration building without the Chapel on the end, is in this Spanish style but war restrictions prevented the completion of the design.

The College was officially opened on 6 February 1938 with approximately 60 boarders transferred from Victoria Square and only a handful of day pupils. Seven Sisters of Mercy staffed the College.  In the years to follow there was a rapid expansion in residential development around Attadale with a resulting growth in student numbers and change from being mainly boarders to day students.  This expansion in numbers has continued to the present day with the College having 660 day students and 152 boarders.

The main administration building in Spanish architectural style was the initial structure.  The Chapel was opened in 1956.  A new classroom block was added in 1958.  The Primary School, as a separate entity, and the four-storey classroom/laboratory block were added in the 1960’s.  The McDonald Cultural Centre and the Library/Art/Canteen section were opened in the 1970’s.
Name of contact  
Mailing Address
Other contact information
Date of previous organs None
Detail of previous organs
Dates when key work has been undertaken
Dates of any moves that have taken place
Variations from original design of organ
Information on previous organs
Information about comparable instruments to previous organs
Present organ
Type of installation Free standing forward facing console. Organ built on an elevated loft, with no speaking pipes on display.
Case description Plain enclosed case
Placement in room Rear of chapel
Builder's name J.E. Dodd & Sons Gunstar Organ Works
Opus number
Date of completion/installation 1969
Construction materials
Number of manuals Two manuals
Key compasses
Number of keys 61
Key material
Pedal compass
Number of pedals 32
Pedalboard type Concave radiating
Pedalboard material
Type of chests
Type of key action Electro magnetic
Type of stop action Electro magnetic
Couplers Swell to Great,  Swell to Pedal, Great to Pedal
Tremulants Whole organ
Console type Forward facing detached console
Stop label material
General design Organ is fully enclosed except for lowest 12 Bourdon pipes
Playing aids Balanced Swell Pedal
Wind pressures
Stop list
Open Diapason 8'
Gedact 8'
Dulciana  8'
Principal  4'
Flute 4'
Twelfth  2-2/3'
Fifthteenth 2'
2 octaves - 75 pipes, extended
Gedact  8'
Dulciana   8'
Flute 4'
Dulcet 4'
Nazard 2-2/3'
Flautina   2'
Larigot  1-1/3'
Bourdon  16'
Bass flute  8'
Cello 8'
Quint      5-1/3'
Octave Flute 4'
Total number of stops 20
Total number of ranks Four ranks extended
Total number of pipes 330
Dates when key work has been undertaken on current organ
Dates of any moves that have taken place to current organ
Information on current organ
Comparable instruments to current organ
Current status
Assessment of organ Excellent, small voice but well balanced within itself.
Other organs by this builder
Photographs Photographs of chapel from the Santa Maria College web site
Photographs of the organs from Alessandro Pittorino
Additional photographs Bruce Duncan
Technical documents 
General documents
Supporting information Santa Maria College web site
Document control

Original entries J R Elms, OAM, Gazetteer of Western Australian Pipe Organs, 1971, 1999,2003 and 2004.
This entry D B Duncan 23 November 2008.
Additional photographs from Alessandro Pittorino 22 January 2009.
Additional stoplist detail from Alessandro Pittorino 13 February 2009.
Addidional detail on the organ from Graham Devenish 28 April 2009.

Additional photographs by Bruce Duncan 14 November 2015


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