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GUEST,henryp Songs about the 'end of an era' (47) RE: Songs about the 'end of an era' 30 Aug 22


The Thirty-Foot Trailer A.L. Lloyd commented in the The Waterson's sleeve notes:

A jaunty song written by Ewan MacColl for his 1964 radio ballad about gypsies and didikais, The Travelling People. The song is a lament, though not a heavy hearted one, for the old days and the picturesque old ways, the canting tongue, the horse-dealing, the clothes-peg whittling, the hawking of artificial flowers.

Inexorably the forces of economic and social change force the black-eyed, quick-fingered van-dwellers from the roads of Britain, once their birthright and heritage and it is only rarely, now, that one sees a battered waggon by the side of a busy road and a white horse nibbling the grass and leisurely swishing its tail as if it had all the time in the world. The Watersons swing out a tribute to their passing. (Mainly Norfolk)

The old ways are changing, you cannot deny,
The day of the traveller is over;
There's nowhere to go and there's nowhere to bide,
So farewell to the life of the rover.

Chorus:
Farewell to the tent and the old caravan,
To the tinker, the Gypsy, the travelling man
And farewell to the thirty-foot trailer.


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