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Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers

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Lorraine 27 Jul 99 - 06:18 PM
GeorgeH 10 Aug 99 - 12:57 PM
Lorraine 10 Aug 99 - 06:50 PM
Susanne (skw) 22 Oct 04 - 03:48 PM
gnomad 23 Oct 04 - 12:56 PM
DebC 23 Oct 04 - 01:01 PM
Les from Hull 23 Oct 04 - 01:50 PM
Les from Hull 23 Oct 04 - 01:55 PM
Willa 24 Oct 04 - 11:05 AM
Susanne (skw) 24 Oct 04 - 05:33 PM
Les from Hull 25 Oct 04 - 09:52 AM
Willa 25 Oct 04 - 10:59 AM
royalty 06 Apr 08 - 12:58 PM
Ross Campbell 06 Apr 08 - 04:59 PM
GUEST,buspassed 07 Apr 08 - 05:41 AM
Linda Kelly 07 Apr 08 - 06:33 AM
Willa 07 Apr 08 - 09:24 AM
GUEST 05 May 08 - 02:47 PM
Folkiedave 05 May 08 - 02:55 PM
GUEST,HippoUK 27 May 08 - 01:27 AM
Willa 20 May 11 - 05:28 PM
Willa 20 May 11 - 05:29 PM
Noreen 21 May 11 - 07:44 PM
JennyD 22 May 11 - 02:12 PM
GUEST,Ann Hall 14 Mar 14 - 03:26 PM
Jim Dixon 15 Mar 14 - 05:22 PM
GUEST,Paul Davenport 16 Mar 14 - 11:14 AM
GUEST,Kathy W 22 Mar 14 - 06:31 AM
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Subject: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: Lorraine
Date: 27 Jul 99 - 06:18 PM

Hey guys-does anyone know the words to this powerful Frankie Armstrong/Ewan McCall song. I know most of it but some I just can't figure out. I'll type up my figuring of the words if anyone thinks they can fill in the blanks or correct my mishearings. Thanks-Lorraine


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: GeorgeH
Date: 10 Aug 99 - 12:57 PM

Are you sure that's not supposed to be "Hull" trawlers? Not that I recognise the song from the description you've given of it so far . . .

G.


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: Lorraine
Date: 10 Aug 99 - 06:50 PM

Yes yes it is Hull Trawlers

Lament for Hull Trawlers

"Mist hangs heavy over the land Over the estuary
Shrouding the ships as they move from the docks
Down the Humber to the sea
Bitter the winds and heavy the billow
freezing the hail and rain
As 3 fishing trawlers went out with the tide
And never are seen again."

Does that ring a bell. The notes said (and I'm trying to remember because I don't have the album now) that Frankie over heard fishermen discussing the disaster in a pub and she wrote the words there. I can do more words if anyone thinks it would be helpful but I know it's not all right--which is why I asked for help. Thank you George H Any takers???-Lorraine


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Subject: Lyr Add: LAMENT FOR THE HULL TRAWLERS
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 22 Oct 04 - 03:48 PM

A few days late, admittedly, but here they are. As you can see, there is one line in verse 4 that I need help with. George??? All my friends from Hull??? Please!

LAMENT FOR THE HULL TRAWLERS
(Ewan MacColl / Frankie Armstrong)

Mist hangs heavy over the land
Over the estuary
Shrouding the ships that move from the docks
Down the Humber to the sea
Bitter the winds and heavy the billows
And freezing the hail and rain
When three fishing trawlers sailed out on the tide
And never returned again

Off to the coast of Iceland they steered
In the first month of the year
When winter gales blow bitter and cold
And women must wait and fear
For no matter the storm, no matter the danger
The profits have got to be made
When the owners give orders the boats must go out
Though they sail to a fisherman's grave

For two weeks and more no signal was heard
From the Saint Romanus crew
At length the owners ordered a search
By the end of a week they knew
The Romanus was gone, the Peridow too
Lost in the cold Northern grounds
Pulled down by the ice on the rigging and deck
Forty brave seamen were drowned

The owners refused to meet with the wives
They said they weren't to blame
When the news came in of a third trawler lost
Ross Cleveland was her name
The cold Northern ice had captured and drowned her
The ice of the ord/Aud/odd(?) was her grave
Eighteen good trawlermen followed her down
Only the one man was saved

Mist hangs heavy over the land
Over the estuary
Shrouding the ships that move from the docks
Down the Humber to the sea
Cold roll the waves on the graves of the seamen
Warm flow the tears of their wives
But frozen the hearts of the men who have built
Their fortunes on fishermen's lives


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: gnomad
Date: 23 Oct 04 - 12:56 PM

I take it that this was the story that the men were discussing.

I lived in Hull at the time, I was not personally connected to the story in any way, but I do remember a whole city holding in its sorrow as if it were something very private. How different to current attitudes.

long article here

The section about what we knew as the Triple Trawler Disaster is quite a long way down, but the whole article is interesting.


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: DebC
Date: 23 Oct 04 - 01:01 PM

I had wrote to Frankie in 2002 about this song and she very kindly wrote me back with the lyrics.

The above is correct except:

The ice of the ord/Aud/odd(?) was her grave

The correct line is:

The Isa Fjord was her grave.

Best,
Debra


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: Les from Hull
Date: 23 Oct 04 - 01:50 PM


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Subject: Lyr Add: HARRY EDDOM (Bill Meek)
From: Les from Hull
Date: 23 Oct 04 - 01:55 PM

A very small point offered for completeness - Peridot not Peridow. It's spelt the former way but the other way is right for pronunciation. (Stupid language, English!)

Certainly this second triple tragedy hit us all pretty hard in Hull, even those like me who had very little connection with the fishing trade.

It might be useful to link to two other great songs that this event inspired

HARRY EDDOM Written by Bill Meek about the one survivor of the three ships that went down

High on the storm torn coast of Iceland
February, sixty-eight
Ross Cleveland out of Hull lay hiding
With anxious eyes her skipper waits

Gale force twelve and the black ice building
Blinding snow and the radar gone
On the cruel rocks of Isafjord
She'll be thrown before the dawn

Try to run for the eastern seaboard
Turn her head into the gale
Harry Eddom leaves the wheelhouse
Steps into that howling hell

Down to a grave in the icy waters
Down to a grave in the cruel sea
Over goes the good Ross Cleveland
Ten seconds to eternity

Out in a raft in the boiling water
Bitter wind cuts like a knife
Two men freeze and die beside him
As Harry Eddom clings to life

Morning comes and the raft is grounded
Three men lie as made of stone
Consciousness at last returning
One man walks ashore alone

Cold are the shores of the Isafjord
Harsh and bare the rocky crest
All day all night walks Harry Eddom
A dead man if he stops to rest

In the misty light of an Iceland morning
Over the rocks in the drifting rain
Shepherds bring poor Harry Eddom
Back from the dead to sail again

Words and music by Bill Meek. Copyright Maypole Music

And here's a link to another wonderful song, by Linda Kelly of Hull (who used to be Ickle Dorritt on Mudcat to clear up the reference in that thread). It tells the true story about her husband John who chose to miss that trip on the Kingston Peridot.

Luckiest sailor


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: Willa
Date: 24 Oct 04 - 11:05 AM

Corrections above (Peridot and Isa Fjord) confirmed
A few more points

'When the owners give orders the ships must go out
Though they sail to a fisherman's grave'
is
'When the owners give orders the ships must go out
They sail to a fisherman's grave'
and
'Cold roll the waves on the graves of the seamen'should be 'trawlermen'
'The owners refused to meet with the wives
They said they weren't to blame'
is
The owners refused to meet with the wives
Who said they were to blame'

The last one is important because it was the efforts of the women which later led to improvements in communications from the trawlers.


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: Susanne (skw)
Date: 24 Oct 04 - 05:33 PM

I knew you wouldn't let me down. Thanks to you all, for corrections and article!

Les, in the case of Peridot/Peridow I don't think the English language is to blame. It seems to be a French name.


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: Les from Hull
Date: 25 Oct 04 - 09:52 AM

on this day

This link includes a couple of audio links about the Ross Cleveland that people may find interesting.

And to add to this series of songs, here's a link to Mike Waterson's song.

three ships


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Subject: RE: LYRICS:Lament for Haul Trawlers(Armstrong)
From: Willa
Date: 25 Oct 04 - 10:59 AM

Suzanne
Peridot is a semi-precious stone (birthstone for Leos, I think?)and the Kingston Peridot's sister ships had names such as the Kingston Turquoise, Kingston Onyx etc


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: royalty
Date: 06 Apr 08 - 12:58 PM

I sailed on the Kingston Peridot as a fireman. We left Hull on the 16/11/67 for Iceland. I remember that I didn?t think highly of her. I thought she was a terrible sea ship. I was placed ashore sick in Iceland and came home 3 weeks later. The Peridot was completing a refit at the Hessle slip. I remember speaking to the chief engineer who asked me to go back in her. I said no and gave him my reasons. He was a nice lad as were all the crew. I stood on the quay o/s the insurance buildings with a big mate of mine Dave Redfern and watched her sail down the Humber. Dave was offered a tide jump on the St Romanus who sailed on the same tide. He took it and said goodbye. I remember he waved as he boarded her from the pilot boat. I never dreamt I wouldn?t see him or any of the lads again. I came up this year to the memorial service of 40 yrs. I was with family, one of them being Ronnie Wilkinson who people might know from his work with Stand. I?ll never forget, as I hope generations to come will be told of Hull fishing heritage and the cost of fish will not forget.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Ross Campbell
Date: 06 Apr 08 - 04:59 PM

I've been singing Harry Eddom since re-hearing it in Hull over ten years ago. Just a couple of weeks ago, someone sang "The Luckiest Sailor" at the Stork singaround in the Glasson Maritime Festival - a very poignant song. I've also heard Mike Waterson and Blue Murder singing the Three Ships/Cold Coast of Iceland arrangement.

I would very much like to hear the Lament for the Hull Trawlers. Any ideas where it may be found?

I had no idea Frankie had written this. I met her last year at Blue Mountains FF in Katoomba and would have quizzed her about it had I known. I live in Fleetwood, Lancs, a fishing town which suffered similar losses over the years, but not in quite the same relentless succession as the Three Trawlers tragedy.

Ron Baxter's song "Lost" lists the trawlers that sailed from Fleetwood, where lives were lost with the ship, and describes some of the circumstances that led to their loss. The list is based on that displayed on the Fisherman's Memorial near the Lower Light on Fleetwood Promenade. The memorial was devised by Dick Gillingham and Dave Pearce. Some of the money raised for the project came from sales of a video that they put together from film clips taken by trawlermen at sea. Gives some idea of the atrocious conditions these men faced.

Royalty, thanks for your post, which echoes the experience of "The Luckiest Sailor". It is important that people remember these things, and pass them on.

Ross


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: GUEST,buspassed
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 05:41 AM

After reading all the postings on these tragic events listen to Mike Waterson's 'Three Day Millionaire' which captures totally the indomitable spirit of the deep sea trawlerman of that time.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Linda Kelly
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 06:33 AM

' Lost' is a wonderful song, and I believe mentions the ship on which Willa's grandfather was lost. Peridot the semi precious stone is pronounced 'peridow' but the Kingston Peridot was definitely 'PeriDOT' -such are the ways of the people of Hull!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Willa
Date: 07 Apr 08 - 09:24 AM

Ross
My grandfather, a former Hull skipper, was skipper of the Lady Love, torpedoed with loss of all hands in August 1941. She had been diverted from her trip to rescue three survivirs from another ship, who were safely landed at Stornoway before the Lady Love was sunk. My son, James Berriman has recorded Lament for the Hull Trawlers; he's a 'catter so you could contact him via PM for an mp3. i sing the Lament and also Harry Eddom. Linda's 'Luckiest Sailor' completes a great trilogy.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: GUEST
Date: 05 May 08 - 02:47 PM


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Folkiedave
Date: 05 May 08 - 02:55 PM

I lived in Hull and Frankie wrote that song whilst staying with us. The tune came later from Ewan.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: GUEST,HippoUK
Date: 27 May 08 - 01:27 AM

I know I'm coming to this thread a little late but I've been researching the triple tragedy for my partner who only recently discovered her grand-father, Frederick Sawdon, was serving as a trimmer on the Ross Cleveland.

I wanted to thank you for helping me along the way but also to point you in the direction of the BBC online archives where there is a play first broadcast in 1980. It's just short of 14 minutes long and at the end features Bill Meek's 'Harry Eddom'

You'll find a link to the play here:

BBC Archives Triple Trawler Tragedy


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Willa
Date: 20 May 11 - 05:28 PM

Lament for the Hull Trawlers,

thread.cfm?threadid=12574#2349829


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Willa
Date: 20 May 11 - 05:29 PM

Sorry folks, clicked on the wrong thread!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Noreen
Date: 21 May 11 - 07:44 PM

Thanks Willa, for refreshing this- if unintentionally!

I've just listened to the BBC play linked to above- very powerful.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: JennyD
Date: 22 May 11 - 02:12 PM

I remember going to see a play about this event in a small arts theatre off Spring Bank in the 70s - very powerful. At one point they put the lights out, and all you could see were points of light representing the trawlers out at sea, plus the noise of waves and weather and radio traffic. It was chilling. I don't remember whether this music was part of that play.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: GUEST,Ann Hall
Date: 14 Mar 14 - 03:26 PM

I got permission from Frankie Armstrong to include the Lament for the Hull Trawler on a cd (or cassette) made to raise money for the lost fishermen's funds. BBC Radio Hull played the track regularly around tha time. They may be able to help. I loved the haunting melody and lyrics. Good luck


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 15 Mar 14 - 05:22 PM

I just listened on Spotify to Frankie Armstrong's recording from her album "Songs and Ballads" (originally issued 1975 but recently reissued on CD, apparently).

I must say the 3 "corrections" that Willa posted in her message of 24 Oct 04 - 11:05 AM are incorrect.

In other words, according to the recording I listened to, the lyrics posted by Susanne at 22 Oct 04 - 03:48 PM are correct (except for "Peridot" and "Isa Fjord" as noted by others).

Maybe Willa was basing her "corrections" on some other recording? I really don't know what she was basing them on.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: GUEST,Paul Davenport
Date: 16 Mar 14 - 11:14 AM

'I do remember a whole city holding in its sorrow as if it were something very private.'
This pretty much sums up the history of Hull, certainly insofar as the city in which I grew up.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Lament for the Hull Trawlers
From: GUEST,Kathy W
Date: 22 Mar 14 - 06:31 AM

Hi. I was listening to my Frankie Armstrong album "Songs and Ballads" yesterday, after a gap of many years, and the Lament for the Hull Trawlers is on this album. I learned it in the late '70s, early '80s from this album, and sang it in folk clubs as a "floor singer", with mistakes which I'm now happy to correct. When I heard it yesterday, I realised that it was all still in my head, and has now been released back into what I think of as my mainstream memory.

Thank you to all those who have been involved in this discussion, not least those who experienced life on trawlers in the '60s. I'm from Kent, but this song back when I was young was so powerful I had to learn it. Even now, when I sing it in front of someone, I get choked enough that it can become quite difficult to keep on singing.

Incindentally, the link posted by gnomad in 2004 doesn't work now. However, there is information here about the "Triple Trawler Tragedy".


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