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Hale School, Wembley Downs

Name of institution Hale School
Type of institution School
Street Address Hale Road
City Wembley Downs
State Western Australia
Postcode 6019
Country Australia
Name of building Assembly Hall
Name of room
Dates of the building 1961
Architect’s and builder’s names
Special architectural features
Special fittings
Other location information Hale School is the oldest independent boys’ school in Western Australia. It was founded in 1858 by the first Anglican Bishop of Perth, Dr Mathew Blagden Hale, a clergyman, educator and social pioneer. The School, which was then known as ‘The Bishop’s Collegiate School’, opened its doors on 28 June 1858, with an initial enrolment of 22 students.

The first campus was established at The Cloisters, St George’s Terrace. In 1914 the School (which was called ‘The High School’ between 1878 and 1929), moved to a bigger site at Havelock Street, West Perth. In 1961, having acquired the name Hale School in 1929, it moved to Wembley Downs, where it is currently situated on a magnificent 48 hectare site, approximately 13 kilometres to the north-west of Perth and two kilometres from the coast.

Hale School is an Anglican day and boarding school, offering primary and secondary education through to Tertiary Entrance Examination level. Whilst day scholars are enrolled from Year 1 to Year 12, boarders are normally accepted from Year 7 to Year 12.

Current enrolment numbers total 1,300, comprising 300 students in the Primary School (Years 1 to 7) and 1,000 in the Senior School (Years 8 to 12). Of this total there are 202 boarders, from various parts of Western Australia and other countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Dubai.
Name of contact
Mailing Address
Telephone 08 9347 9777
Other contact information Hale School website
Previous organ(s)
Date of previous organ None
Detail of previous organ
Dates when key work has been undertaken
Dates of any moves that have taken place
Variations from original design of organ
Information on previous organ
Information about comparable instruments to previous organ
Present organ
Type of installation
Case description
Placement in room
Builder's name Bishop & Son, London and Ipswich,
Opus number
Date of completion/installation 1875, installed this school 1984
Construction materials
Number of manuals Two (2)
Key compasses
Number of keys
Key material
Pedal compass
Number of pedals
Pedalboard type
Pedalboard material
Type of chests
Type of key action Electro-magnetic
Type of stop action Electro-magnetic to slider chests
Couplers Seven (7)
Console type
Stop label material
General design
Playing aids
Wind pressures
Stop list
Cornopean 8'

Total number of stops 22
Total number of ranks 27
Total number of pipes
Dates when key work has been undertaken on current organ Organ was damaged extensively in the storm of March 22nd, 2010.  It has been in storage at POWA workshop since then with some restoration work on the pipes completed.  Discussions are currently underway as to the refurbishment/rebuilding of the instrument and its exact location.  This work will inevitably include sufficient re-voicing as is necessary to provide an adequate sound in this 1000 seat auditorium.
Dates of any moves that have taken place to current organ Organ installed 1875 at Wesley Church, Perth.
In 1908 the organ was moved next door to Queens Hall, William Street, Perth (later Metro Theatre), to make way for a new organ.

In 1926 the organ was relocated by W L Roberts Ltd, Adelaide, to Wesley Methodist Church, Claremont (job no 96).

Rebuilt in 1955 by J.E. Dodd & Sons Gunstar Organ Works, Adelaide. Electro-pneumatic action and new console installed; swell Cornopean and Dulciana extended to Ped. 16'.

In 1984 Hale School Assembly Hall, Hale Road, Wembley Downs, became the organ's next and current home. Installed by F.J. Larner & Co. with tonal alterations. Third manual prepared for.

Information on current organ The first pipe organ to be installed in Western Australia was this 1875 instrument for Wesley Church, Perth.
This organ served Wesley Church for over 30 years in its original location.
Comparable instruments to current organ
Current status
Assessment of organ
Other organs by this builder
Technical documents 
General documents
Supporting information
Document control Original entries J R Elms, OAM, Gazetteer of Western Australian Pipe Organs, 1971, 1999,2003 and 2004.
This entry D B Duncan 07 January 2009.
Additional information from Graham Devenish 28 January 2011.