Mark Venning



Mark’s interest in organs began in the 1940s in rural Wiltshire where he lived with mother and piano. Early on he discovered the superb Victorian organs in local churches, and he played for his first church service at the age of eight. He was educated at Winchester College, Christ Church Oxford and the Royal College of Music.

After teaching music for a while he moved to Durham on April Fool’s Day 1972 to join Harrison & Harrison. He arrived with his wife, Katherine, who retired in 2009 after two decades as Administrator of H&H. They have four children. Mark became Managing Director in 1975, and worked happily with Cuthbert Harrison until Cuthbert’s death in 1991, when he also became Chairman. From 1994 to 2000 he was President of the International Society of Organ Builders. He still plays the organ in public from time to time.

Mark retired as Managing Director in 2011, but remains active as Chairman. In 2013 he was awarded the Medal of the Royal College of Organists for his contributions to the organ world.