The Scottish Federation of Organists

SFO Bookshop

The following publications are available and we will be happy to fill your order by eBay, by email, by mail or by phone.

The prices quoted below are postage paid within the UK.

Stocks of all books are held by Donald Maclagan, full details below:

            The ebay item numbers are as follows:

            Organs in Scotland Second Edition by Alan Buchan - 193624185778
            SHOT Bulletin 19 - April 2020 - not available on ebay - please contact Donald Maclagan as below
            The Scottish Organist - 193325270299
            History of the SFO by Donald Maclagan - 193304713489
            Church Organs (advice booklet) - 193304709539
            Psalm Tunes from the 1564 Scottish Psalter of Robert Lekprevik by Donald Maclagan - 193304708505
            Let Him Sing Psalms by Donald Maclagan - 193304714001
            Hymns and Hymn Tunes of William D Maclagan by Donald Maclagan - 193304710446
           Text of Address on the Hymns and Hymn Tunes of W D Maclagan by Donald Maclagan - 193304714412
            Places of Worship and their pipe organs on the Isle of Bute by Donald Maclagan - 193304709539




Organs in Scotland — A Revised List
by Alan Buchan, B.Mus.
originally published March 2018, Second Edition published August 2020

Originally published on 31 March 2018, this completely revised list of organs in Scotland contains details of every known pipe organ that has existed in Scotland with information about builder, re-builds, refurbishments etc.  The first edition print run of 500 copies sold out in just 19 months.

This Second Edition with many corrections, amendments and additions is now available here at a cost of £8.50 + £3.50 postage and packing within the UK.

This remarkable lifetime labour of love by Alan Buchan runs to 364 pages and features 95 colour photographs and 37 B&W photos.

The first edition of 2018 was printed on excellent half-gloss art paper; this second edition is printed on a slightly heavier very high quality paper with a matt finish that makes reading and reference even more enjoyable.

The books are supplied brand new and unopened.

(Members of the Edinburgh Society of Organists are entitled to a free copy on application to Donald Maclagan on

The Hymns and Hymn Tunes of William D. Maclagan
compiled by Donald T. Maclagan, AIBScot SRPara DipRSCM
published June 2017
£8.75 with free postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail

William Dalrymple Maclagan was prominent in the Church of England having served in five positions in London before becoming Bishop of Lichfield and finally Archbishop of York from 1891 to 1908.  Donald Maclagan is third cousin four times removed of the late Archbishop. As well as being a prominent churchman, William Maclagan was a talented church musician and wrote 9 hymns and 30 tunes and all of these are gathered here in a single 50-page volume for the first time. The hymns are complete and the tunes are in the Archbishop’s own 4-part harmony.

Let Him Sing Psalms
by Donald T. Maclagan, AIBScot SRPara DipRSCM
published 2016
£6.25 with free postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail

Let Him Sing Psalms comprises 36 pages tracing the use of the metrical psalms in Scotland from 1546 to the present day, starting with a look at the development of the Christian Church in Scotland and going on to examine the various psalm books that over the centuries have led to the metrical psalms holding that special place in the hearts of Scottish Christians.

In The Hymn Society of Great Britain and Ireland Bulletin Summer 2018 (Number 296 - Volume 22 Number 3) Andrew Pratt wrote:
    Let Him Sing Psalms is an account of the use of Metrical Psalms in Scotland from 1546 to the present day.  This slim booklet begins with a summary of the history of the Christian church in Scotland.  For those who are not familiar with the context this helps to explain the particular relevance and place of Psalmody here.  The book then proceeds to place the use of metrical psalms within this context from an historical perspective.  While the decline of the use of metrical psalms is noted, there is no recognition or analysis of the disconnect between the Hebrew Judaic originals and the, sometimes faulted, language which results from the metrical structure that is being imposed on the scripture.
    Donald Maclagan bemoans the disuse into which the Scottish Psalter 1929 has fallen, while not acknowledging the depth of inspiration from the Psalms which permeates much of late-twentieth and early twenty-first century hymnody.  He is wedded to the use of metrical Psalms and this provides the imperative for this book.  As an account of these this is an invaluable introduction.
Available for Loan

Sydney Opera House Grand Organ
Specification and Background Notes 1980

The SFO has received a gift from Ms Mary-Ann Cockburn of Dundee of the original booklet containing details of the Sydney Opera House Grand Organ - at 127 stops spread over 5 manuals and pedals thought to be the largest mechanical-action organ in the world.

This booklet was published in 1980 just months after the organ was completed at the end of May 1979.  Although some details of the organ are available on the Opera House website this booklet is much more detailed containing Background Notes, Specification, a biography of the builder Ronald Sharp and a reprint of a very comprehensive article about the organ by Jamieson Rowe.  There are 11 black and white photographs including one of Marie-Claire Alain playing in November 1979.

As the copyright status of this booklet is vague it is not possible to scan or photocopy it.  However, any member of an SFO affiliated local organists' society may borrow the booklet from Donald Maclagan, or 01540 662431.
In The Hymn Society of Great Britain and Ireland Bulletin Summer 2018 (Number 296 - Volume 22 Number 3) Andrew Pratt wrote:
    Maclagan was Archbishop of York from 1891 to 1908, when he retired through ill-health.  This booklet avoids the risk of being hagiographical by simply providing the texts and tunes of Maclagan and making no comment as to their literary or musical quality.  This can be attested by their continued use.
    Nine texts are printed in full, of which seven are listed in HymnQuest, though none seems to have been selected for inclusion in the twenty-first-century hymnals listed therein.  It is finished! Blesséd Jesus! is included in the greatest number of hymnals.  Of some 30 hymn tunes printed, three continue in use today, the most widely cited being Newington and Bread of Heaven.
    There are extensive notes providing insight into the history of the writing, use and publication of the tunes and texts, together with explanations of changes of musical setting or alternative words.
    The book is a fine tribute to William D. Maclagan as a hymn writer and an excellent resource for anyone wishing to research him more widely.
History of the Scottish Federation of Organists
by Donald T Maclagan, AIBScot SRPara DipRSCM
published 2018
£6.50 with free postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail

Over a year of research and compilation has resulted in this remarkable history of the Scottish Federation of Organists.  Founded in 1956 the SFO remains the only charitable body to encourage and represent the organists of Scotland no matter where in the country they work and no matter whether they play in one of the major city cathedrals or in one of the hundreds of small rural churches.   A4 paperback “coffee-table” format, 95 pages with 27 full colour illustrations.

Dr John P. Kitchen, MBE MA BMus PhD FRCO LRAM, Edinburgh City Organist, Honorary Fellow of the Reid School of Music and Director of Ceremonial Music, University of Edinburgh, Director of Music, Old Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church, Royal Mile, Edinburgh has described this work as “a fascinating read” and “an essential Christmas Stocking filler”.

Published and subsidised by the Edinburgh Society of Organists - ESO members are entitled to a free copy paying only £2.50 for postage and packing; please contact Donald Maclagan.

A copy of the 2018-21 Addenda will be included.

Anyone who has alread bought a copy of the book may obtain a free copy of the latest update on application to Donald Maclagan or by downloading it by clicking here.
Church Organs
compiled by Alan Buchan, Douglas Galbraith and Russell Grant.
published 1998 with subsequent amendments
£2.00 with free postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail

Originally   prepared in 1998 by AlanBuchan, DouglasGalbraith and Russell Grant, with additional input from Organ Advisers and members of the  Advisory Committee on Artistic Matters (from May  2005 redesignated the Committee on Church Art and Architecture).  The   booklet  has  been   revised several times, most recently in 2016 by Alan Buchan and members of the Organ Advice Committee of  the  Scottish Federation of Organists.
Text of an Address on The Hymns and Hymn Tunes of William D. Maclagan
presented by Donald T. Maclagan, AIBScot SRPara DipRSCM
print edition published October 2017
£2.50 with free postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail

Since compiling the book of hymns and tunes by his third cousin, Archbishop of York, 1891-1908, Donald Maclagan has addressed both The Tayside Organists’ Society and the Aberdeen and District Association of Organists on the life and times of the Archbishop and the process of compiling the book.  The text is presented here in print form.
The Psalm Tunes contained in Robert Lekprevik's Scottish Psalter of 1564
by Donald T. Maclagan, AIBScot SRPara DipRSCM
published 2019
£14.80 with free postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail
£22.70 with free postage worldwide by Royal Mail International Standard mail

This A4 book of 62 pages contains all the tunes contained in The Scottish Psalter printed as part of The Book of Common Order by Robert Lekprevik, Publisher, Edinburgh, St Andrews and Stirling in 1564.  The tunes have been transcribed from the original block printing into modern musical notation but retaining all the details of the original.

The original book from which this work is derived reproduced the 1556 Anglo-Genevan Psalter and most of its tunes, completing it on the same principles to contain all 150 psalms.

While only the melodies of the tunes were printed, part singing was certainly known around this time as there is a record of a four-part rendition of Psalm 124 being sung to welcome Rev John Durie back to Edinburgh from exile in 1582.

There are 30 metres represented in this book.  98 psalms are set to common metre, 10 to long metre, 6 to short metre and 4 to 6-line long metre, there are 26 other metres for the remaining 32 psalms.

The majority of the tunes in this book will be unfamiliar to most of us in the 21st century but two tunes particularly caught my attention as still being in common use today; Psalm 100 is set to what we know today as Old 100th while today’s Old 124th also appears here set to Psalm 124.

Other tunes that may be familiar (at least in part) are set to Psalms 18 (Old 18th), 29 (Old 29th), 44 (Old 44th), 68 (Old 68th), and 137 (Old 137th).

The Scottish Organist - volumes 6, 7 and 8
edited by Alan Buchan BMus
published 1993 (volume 6), 1995 (volume 7) and 1996 (volume 8)
£1.00 + £0.50 postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail

The Scottish Organist was the first regularly printed journal of the Scottish Federation of Organists commencing with the first volume in 1985 edited by Alistair Pow, as were the first few volumes.   Subsequently, the journal was edited by Alan Buchan.

Recently a  "lost" stock of some copies came to light and these are offered free to interested people, asking only that you pay the postage cost.  (The eBay system does not allow us to offer the item free so we have put a price of £1 per copy on the listing and deducted the £1 from the actual postage cost.)  If you do not wish to use eBay please feel free to contact

Thus we have a reasonable stock of these volumes 6, 7 and 8.

This items are brand new although showing some signs of having been stored for some 30 or so years.

SHOT Bulletin - April 2020
edited by Alan Buchan BMus
published 2020
Free + £1.50 postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail
Free + £6.00 postage worldwide by Royal Mail Standard air mail

The SHOT Bulletin is the regular - once or twice a year - bulletin of the Scottish Historic Organs Trust.  This latest issue is offered free with recipients asked to pay only for postage.

This latest issue is 20 pages in A4 paperback format and with 45 photographs in full colour except where the originals were in monochrome.  Articles detail plans for a future outing when the current Coronavirus COVID-19 crisis ends, an account of the June 2019 outing to seven organs within the Cairngorms National Park area, reflections on the November 2019 trip to Grangemouth, Bo'ness and Linlithgow and a huge amount of interesting information about matters organ - particularly about various historic instruments and related publications.

Each free copy of the Bulletin supplied with come with an application form for membership of SHOT included.  At just £12.00 per annum this really is a bargain for anyone interested in our king of instruments.  Do please join and support our activities.

Page updated 30th April 2021
Places of Worship (and the pipe organs) on the Isle of Bute
by Donald T Maclagan AIBScot SRPara DipRSCM
revised edition published 2020
£15.00 with free postage within the UK by 2nd Class Royal Mail

A4 paperback booklet format, 38 pages with 24 colour and 9 B&W photographs.

A comprehensive review of all 41 places of worship known to have existed on the Isle of Bute together with details of their pipe organs and a few other organs and some personal memories plus a timeline of Christian demoninations in Scotlamd since the Reformation.

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