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Graham WalkerThis is the website of Graham Walker, Dorset, UK who has had an interest in the early piano for over 30 years. He has undertaken the restoration of instruments for private collection and has also carried out research on early pianos and their makers over this period. This has been done alongside a career in management consultancy and performance management. Early retirement in 2007 enabled him to become more involved and he commissioned a cloth manufacturer to produce an authentic keyboard cloth. This cloth is the nearest match to an early 19th century piano cloth that can be made within modern manufacturing processes. It was initially produced for his requirements but it soon came in demand by others.  Further types of cloth have been replicated by request from makers and restorers.  These cloths can be purchased from the online shop on this website.  He has also undertaken some research into the leather used in early English pianos and is currently working in liaison with the Institute of Creative Leather Technology, Northampton University, UK with the objective of determining specifications. He is involved in supporting interest in the early piano and is passionate about ensuring that our heritage of early pianos collections in the UK can be maintained for the future.

c1795 Robert Marr square piano

c1795 Marr 1This late 18th century square piano by Robert Marr would at first sight appear to be made by Broadwood.  It uses brass under-dampers and the wrest pins are positioned at the back of the instrument.  There are many other details that are similar to a Broadwood but there are also a number of differences.  The nameboard inscription reads: Robert Marr, Edinburgh, Maker from London”. It would seem likely that Marr worked for John Broadwood before taking up business in Edinburgh. Robert Marr’s workshop was located in Head Halkerston’s Wynd.  This square piano has a pedal that is used for a lid swell.  If Marr made these instruments, he must have been a very accomplished maker to copy Broadwood square pianos.  Clinkscale (Makers of the Piano 1760-1820) gives his dates as 1794 to 1810 only.

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