The Clarke Tinwhistle Company - Makers of the original tinwhistle since 1843. Original British manufacturer of Tin Whistles: Penny Whistle, MEG Tinwhistle, Original Tinwhistle; for flute music, jazz music. Made in UK.


Welcome to Clarke Tinwhistle

In the year 1843 Charles Dickens published A Christmas Carol; Mendelssohn wrote his famous Wedding March; Wagner's opera, The Flying Dutchman, was first performed; Sir Henry Cole commissioned the first Christmas card; Brunel's tunnel under the River Thames in London opened; John Curwen published his Tonic Sol-fa; Nelson's column was erected in Trafalgar Square...

... and in a tiny, far from famous, village in Suffolk England, Robert Clarke made his inspired musical invention.

And a new word, TINWHISTLE, was coined.

In 1843, in Coney Weston, that tiny village in England, a farm labourer made a small miracle. This was Robert Clarke, uneducated, hard-working, deeply religious and devoted to his family. He was also very musical. So much so, that when he heard of a new material called "Tinplate", he obtained some with which to make his own musical instrument.

Robert and Sarah Clarke Robert & Sarah Clarke

Using the tinplate, together with some solder and a small piece of wood, he created this instrument.

But little did he know that his humble little instrument was destined to become just about the most popular player of tunes in the whole folk music world.

Thanks to Robert's manufacturing and entrepreneurial skills, his instruments were later to be exported all over the world - particularly to Ireland. This was due to the fact that sometimes Robert met the navigators, Irish labourers who were building railways and canals in England, and sold them his Tinwhistles.

When these Irishmen returned to Ireland they took their Tinwhistles with them. All the Irish people very soon recognized its unique sound and the Clarke Tinwhistle rapidly became one of Ireland's favourite folk instruments.

The Golden Eagles, School Tinwhistle Band of New York, playing their Clarke Tinwhistles

"It's very expressive, in the right hands, in the hands of a master it's a real virtuoso instrument"- James Galway

James Galway

The Clarke Tin Whistle Story

With Introduction by James Galway

Delicate operations still continue to be done by hand and, most importantly, Robert Clarke's traditional conical bore has been retained to give the instrument its unique sound, called “chiff”, and no other whistle has the same degree of "chiff" as a Clarke.

That is why, more than 165 year later, it remains the favourite instrument of so many musicians throughout the world. play it... enjoy it... and join the millions of fellow musicians who have had their start in music with the famous CLARKE TINWHISTLE.


Global Winds