A journey into the history and current project around the Standaart organ installed in Ricky Harts terraced house in folkestone

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Photo: Nigel Laflin

Hopefully you will enjoy your finding out about the only Standaart Organ remaining in the UK! 

This magnificent instrument dates from 1929, when it was installed in the Savoy Folkestone. The organ was built by the Dutch firm Standaart and was 1 of only 6 to be imported to the UK. 

This particular instrument was badly damaged in 1945 when a freak storm tore part of the cinemas roof off and although it remained dormant after that, in 1963 a local enthusiast by the name of Ricky Hart (pictured at the top) saved the organ, and combined it with parts from the organs in the Playhouse & Pleasure Gardens. 

He then installed it in his terraced house – YES you did read that correctly!!!

Incredibly he placed all of the organ pipes and percussions in the roof of his loft in a soundproof chamber and used microphones to bring the sound down to battery of speakers concealed in the living room where the console was placed.

From 1963, organ music reigned supreme in the Hart household until Ricky passed away in 2009. His wife Yvonne subsequently passed away in March 2021, and thats where I come in, as the new owner of the organ.

Im a young enthusiast who’s 26 years old, and have taken on this project to save the only Standaart organ left in the UK!