Songs for Humberside
The song 'Humber Bridge' was written by Christopher Rowe and recorded by Christopher Rowe and Ian Clarke. It is a protest song about the lack of a Humber Bridge, but is included here as it's the only song I know with 'Goole' in the lyrics.
For those of you in a Karaoke mood, the lyrics and music can be found below the feedback.
It is now 38 years since Christopher Rowe and I first recorded the Songs for Humberside EP collection - to be followed by the rather predictably titled More Songs for Humberside and then by the Decca LP. I know there are some copies still around which haven't been turned into plant pots and a number of people have contacted me about digital copies of individual songs now that turntables are almost as scarce as the records.
I'm very sad to say that Christopher died some 5 years ago - a great loss to all his family friends and fans. I'm sure he would be delighted to know that there are still those around who sing about "going round by Goole" and remember the songs with affection. The Haltemprice level crossings, Victoria Square and the William Wilberforce statue all bring back very happy memories of our time in Hull.
Living across in Merseyside and making regular trips back along the M62 I frequently give vent to a verse or two as we pass the bridge. I think I'll have to start singing earlier - as we pass Goole!
Best wishes to all your surfers!
Thanks to those who got in touch,it was much appreciated,
Thank you so much for this - Once I've learned it, I'm looking forward to singing it in Lostwithiel later this summer. If anyone has an MP3 of any of the other material, I'd be more than happy to contribute some beer tokens for a copy!
Now if I could just find a copy of the Whitby to Scarborough Line, I would be in seventieth heaven, let alone seventh.
BODO from Germany
I really want a copy of this on DVD of anyone knows were i can get to from please post.
I remember being out for a few drinks with friends and somehow finished the evening at Chris Rowe's house - can't remember how or why but Chris and Ian entertained us with a few songs right there in the living room.
I still have a couple of copies of the book stored away in my 'memory box' and over Christmas was having a nostalgic read. Sad to see Chris is no longer with us.
THE HUMBER BRIDGE 25th ANNIVERSARY
What cause we have to celebrate this day
For twenty-five years now we’ve had to pay
To cross this bridge that they have built
But should not our Government bear the guilt
For we pay tax to fuel and drive our cars
So is not this tax to cross a tax too far.
A bridge to nowhere from Gods own land
Will for the rest of time always stand
As a symbol of our Governments greed
And how they always take no heed
Of those who keep them in such splendid state
So take up your diaries and note well this date.
Michael A. Hellyer
Does anyone know where we might be able to get hold of a copy?
PS Our father was the lighthouse keeper at Withernsea. We used to help our dad show people around during the summer holidays. Does anyone remember being given a guided tour by us in the 1970's?
I want to thank you Ian for the wonderful memories I have of our family singing the choruses and having a laugh over the words, they were so witty.
My husband was delighted when he found that one of you (and I think it was you) was his English teacher when he went back into Adult Education for a course in English, Accounts and Office Practice, years ago.
My son passed this site onto me, thank you again.
Just woke from a dream, trying to remember the name of the post war planner who re-designed Hull, and of course, it's mentioned in one of the songs, as the "Abercrombie plan" where the guys sing about Carr lane et al. Memory dading now, but remember listening to this back in the 70's.
Cmon, digitise it and re-launch it for us Oldies !
I'm interested in tracking down a copy of Songs from Humberside, More songs from Huimberside, and also Folk Train.
Anyway - all the best to you. Happy listening.
This is a very long shot I know but I was wondering if you have a CD version of "Songs for Humberside" that I could buy. As I remember it so well from my childhood and would love to have a copy that I could now play for my family. I, like you have left the East Riding, and I now live and work in Manchester, but I'm very much an East Riding lass. If you can't help me I wonder if you could direct me to someone who could. I had to use this forum as your e-mail address doesn't work
The Revd Melanie Appleby SCP
Vicar of The Parish Church of William Temple
William Temple Vicarage
THe Bridge is still the most iconic in the world and there will never be another Chris Rowe.
"No-one departs, no-one arrives,
From Selby to Goole,
From St. Erth to St. Ives,
They all passed out of our lives,
On the slow train"
That makes Hartmut Rentsch's comment doubly appropriate (above 19/6/2011).
If any ex Kelvin pupils or teachers (Ian!) want to join contact Geoff Gooding on Facebook.
Off to the loft now to get the LP down.
Thanks for providing the sheet music, chords & lyrics - guess what I'll be playing when I get back home tonight!
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In our early history Julius Caesar crossed the sea
To this island off the Northern coast of France.
Then some other Romans came to treat us just the same
And they stayed a little longer just by chance.
They came, they saw, they conquered everything that they could see
'Til they reached the River Humber, that noble estuary.
But they burnt their boats behind them not thinking it could be
That the ancient Britons hadn't built a bridge.
Will they ever bridge the Humber? Will they ever span it or
Is it always an exception to the rule?
Is it such a privilege not to have a Humber Bridge
And to have to keep on going round by Goole?
In a thousand years or more there arrived on England's shore
A noble duke who came from Normandy.
Duke William was his name and conqueror he became
For he conquered all the land that he could see.
But one day he came up North and there to his surprise
As he reached the River Humber he was made to realise
While Romans could build straighter roads and walls of every size,
They never tried to build a Humber Bridge
In the English civil war when they fought on Marston Moor
And the Royalists were scattered far and wide.
They disturbed the peaceful slumber of the quiet River Humber
But they knew that Hull was not a place to hide.
For the city favoured Cromwell and there they could not stay
They headed for the river to cross without delay.
But on reaching Hessle foreshore they found to their dismay
No one had ever built a Humber Bridge.
The year of nineteen sixty six found Harold Wilson in a fix
With his overall majority down to two.
He just couldn't face rejection at the Hull North bye election
Barbara Castle came to see what she could do.
There is one thing I can promise, she assured us on that day,
You'll get your Humber Bridge and there won't be much delay.
But she forgot to mention that a squeeze was on the way
And still we're waiting for a Humber Bridge
Now they've built across the Severn, they've built across the Tay
And they've even spanned the mighty Firth of Forth.
But an increase on this number with a bridge across the Humber
Appears to be more trouble than it's worth.
Gas may flow in from the ocean, oil may spurt out from the sea
We could join the Common Market or something else maybe
Then in Whitehall and in Westminster perhaps they'll start to see
That at last we really need a Humber Bridge.
In nineteen eighty one when at last the bridge was done
It was opened by Her Majesty the Queen
It was suspended by steel / cables spun by spinning wheel
The longest that the world had ever seen
But it was financed by a debt and so we had to pay
At first it was a pound to go across each way each day
But now it's two pounds seventy with increases on the way
And we can't afford to cross the Humber Bridge.
Will they ever pay the loan off? will it ever be free?
Is it always an exception to the rule?
Is it such a privilege just to drive across a bridge
Not to have to keep on going round by Goole?