Simon first started note-holding for Peter Jewkes and Tony Welby when he was still a schoolboy. This was encouraged by his father, Bill, a well-known Australian organist, whose uncles were third generation piano-tuners and violin-makers in Scotland. Simon's natural mechanical ability manifested itself in restoring Humber motorcars. He met his wife, Julie, on a Humber club run. He has two children, Lachlan and Imogen.
As to why he builds organs - perhaps it is simply in the blood. Musically, he has sung in many church choirs, including Christ Church Cathedral, Newcastle, and learnt to play the organ on the magnificent T.C. Lewis instrument in PLC, Pymble. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Sydney University and trained with J.W. Walker and Sons, Australia. Other hobbies include modelling NSW steam locomotives.
In 1998, Simon worked in Germany for six months with the firm of Johannes Klais, Bonn, and was involved with the new organ in Cologne Cathedral and for Heligkreuz, Wuerzburg. A meeting in Paris with Anja Rohlf during the International Organbuilders' Conference in 1998 induced her to extend her subsequent Australian tour to include Simon's work in her report.
In 2001 he received a Churchill Fellowship and toured the USA for three months, studying new organ building trends.