Words: Dave Boulton Music: Jeff Parton
Brian Berrington – a fine songwriter from Stoke during the 60’s&70’s wrote a charming little song called Boslem Wakes. It’s about 4 stoke lads – Willie Clough and Jim McGough and ‘arry Lowns and “Me.” going to Blackpool on a day trip. The trip culminates with one of the lads being involved in an impromptu “romantic entanglement” and missing his coach home. The song is written in “Stokinese” but it is easily understood and not a word is wasted. It is a beautiful, knowing, little sketch of the adventures of these 4 Stoke lads. From the Four in Hand in Newcastle-Under- Lyme where all our Blackpool coach trips started, to Preston where coaches stopped for a comfort beak and as the song mentions, a local snack – “kewd oatcakes and chaze” to the famous UCP fish and chip in Blackpool and the long walk home. 50 years on I smile at the “knowingness” of it even now. Boslem Wakes Revisited is just a nod and a smile to Brian (who sadly passed many years ago) and the little gem he left behind for us. My effort isn’t a patch on the original but I just wanted to try and see what would happen if the “the lads” decided to relive their trip as old blokes. I asked Jeff for a similar tune to the original Boslem Wakes. As you might expect he came up with a cracker.
Now Willy Clough and Jim McGough and Me and Harry Lownes
The four of uz once took the buzz to far off Blackpool town
If you recall it didn’t all go quite the way we’d planned?
And I had to woke back home to stoke – I’d missed the charabang
Well that you know was years ago time goes by so quick
And t’other day old Will says eh its Boslem Wakes next wick?
And Harry and Jim says count us in but to prevent a fuss
Ah said that’s fine but think this time we’ll hire a mini bus
So Saturday the lads and may on to the bus we pile
And it wonna long before were on the famous Golden mile
Then off we went with good intent to implement our plans
To have a jar in every bar from Bispam to St Anne’s
We met a bloke as come from Stoke while we was on the tram
Already drunk as several skunks he said his name was Stan
Well we told Stan our drinking plan and said come with us mate
But he says no I ought to go then added yeah owe rate
Well we drank pints till we lost cinte and then went on the shorts
We knocked ‘em back til we’d lost track of all the rounds we’d bought
About half three Jim says to me its time we headed home
I says what can we do with Stan we can’t leave him on his own
Well the five of us are on the bus and headed back to Stoke
Stans in a mess but his address is sewn inside his coat
At Bentilee the lads and me get him to his front door
We ring the bell and bang and yell but no one’s there at all
The lights came on at number 1 the windows opened wide
What’s going on? what d’you lot want? d’you know its half past five?
Don’t make that din there’s no one in no need to shout and shriek
Its Boslem Wakes they always go to Blackpool for the week