RAILWAY HISTORY OF CAMBRIDGE

Rhythm, Rhymes & Railways

Historyworks is starting a new public art project in Cambridge, devised by the Creative Director, Helen Weinstein, which will run from the Spring of 2017 to December 2017, and we'll invite a large number of singers from local schools and community choirs to come together to perform new pieces for voice and body percussion which we will perform at Mill Road Fair on 2nd December 2017.

The project is called 'Rhythm, Rhyme & Railways' to tell the story of how Cambridge changed when the railway came in 1845. We are working with top writers, the renowned poet Michael Rosen, and the witty lyricist, Dave Cohen, who is the CBBC's Horrible-Histories Song-writer.  The choir MDs will be Mario Satchwell, Tizzy Faller, & Bethany Kirby.

Helen Weinstein has been leading the research about the railway, revealing stories about the workers and their families who serviced the railways in the early years during Victorian times, and finding stories from further afield to connect the local to the global, using many of the resources of the Mill Road History Society, such as the research on the railway cottages, and the fantastic archive based at the National Railway Museum in York.  We'll collect stories locally too to add to the narrative of the poems and online resources.

Please find in the tabs some of the new poems and songs, including a poem by Michael Rosen about Victorian day trips from Cambridge, and songs about One Railway Track, and a Cat Meditating on a Railway Track, with more songs in the composing pipe-line, which means this starter set of songs and poems will be added to very soon, so watch this space!


MICHAEL ROSEN’S CAMBRIDGE RAILWAY EXCURSIONS POEM

The poet, Michael Rosen, is collaborating on the project with Historyworks, and will be returning to lead workshops for schools and lyric writers in the Autumn. So far, he has written a poem or chant based on two posters from the Victorian period offering day excursions from Cambridge, one to London, and the other to the seaside, ending with the emphatic request, no luggage allowed! To see Michael Rosen perform the poem and read the words, view our film here:

CAMBRIDGE EXCURSION toLONDON AND BACK CELEBRATING TWO GREAT DAY TRIPSARRANGED BY THE GREAT EASTERN RAILWAYIN 1868 AND 1876TAKEN FROM THE POSTERS OF THE TIME

Poem by Michael Rosen

Commissioned by HistoryWorks For ‘Creating My Cambridge’ S106 Project

Chorus 1: The DAY exCURSion to LONdon and BACK
Chorus 2: The day excursion to London and back
Chorus 1: FOResters FETE at the CRYstal PALace
Chorus 2: Foresters Fete at the Crystal Palace

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: Oo-oo-woo [a mix of delight and the whistle of an engine]
Chorus 2: Psssshhhhhtttt [a mix of breathing out and the sound of an engine giving off steam.]

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: AUGust EIGHTeen SIXty-EIGHT
Chorus 2: August eighteen sixty-eight
Chorus 1: STARTing in CAMbridge at SIX-fifTEEN
Chorus 2: Starting in Cambridge at six-fifteen

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: Oo-oo-woo  
Chorus 2: Psssshhhhhtttt

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: STOPping at WHITTlesford, SAFFron WALden
                 STANsted NEXT, then BISHop’s STORTford.
Chorus 2: SAWbridgeWORTH and then it’s HARlow
                 ArrRIVing in LONdon at NINE o’CLOCK.

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: Oo-oo-woo  
Chorus 2: Psssshhhhhtttt

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: A SPEcial CHEAP ExCURsion TRAIN
Chorus 2: To WALton-ON-the NAZE and BACK
Chorus 1: AUGust EIGHTeen SEVenty SIX
Chorus 2: August eighteen seventy-six

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: Oo-oo-woo  
Chorus 2: Psssshhhhhtttt

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: EARly START at TWENty past SIX.
Chorus 2: CAMbridge, SHELford, NEXT stop LINton
Chorus 1: SAFfron WALden, BARTlow, HAVerhill
Chorus 2: NEXT stop CLARE, and THEN it’s MELford

 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: Oo-oo-woo  
Chorus 2: Psssshhhhhtttt

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: ArRIVing at WALton at NINE forty FIVE
Chorus 2: GREAT Eastern RAILway’s DAY at the SEAside
Chorus 1:The WHOLE round TRIP will COST you 3 BOB
Chorus 2: “No LUGGage allOWED”; “No LUGGage allOWED”

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Chorus 1: Oo-oo-woo  
Chorus 2: Psssshhhhhtttt


Michael Rosen's Cambridge Railway Excursions Poem - Adapted to song

You Can download a pdf or the score HERE


Michael Rosen: Hand on the Bridge

Lyrics

Hand on the bridge,
Feel the rhythm of the train.
Hand on the window
Feel the rhythm of the rain.
Hand on your throat
Feel the rhythm of your talk
Hand on your leg
Feel the rhythm of your walk
Hand in the sea
Feel the rhythm of the tide
Hand on your heart
Feel the rhythm inside
Hand on the rhythm
Feel the rhythm of the rhyme
Hand on your life
Feel the rhythm of time
Hand on your life
Feel the rhythm of time
Hand on you life
Feel the rhythm of time.

You cab download a pdf of the score HERE


Mill Road Raiway Workers

 


Cambridge Navvies

 

You can download a copy of the score HERE

Lyrics

The /Nav-vies were   men   who / made the can-als   for /
twelve hours a day   they’d / sweat with their pals    movin’ /
twenty tonnes of earth   in a / barrow up a plank… and /
leavin’ it all at the /top of the bank. 

The navvies were men who / laid the train tracks /
Cutting through hills with a / pick and an axe. /
Lay-in’ the ties… / covered them with stones.
Sun / burning their skin and / Wind freezing their bones.

When the / whistle would blow, they’d off to their homes, /
Built near the tracks so they’d /not far to go. For /
wages they’d get beef and a gallon of beer.. then /
they’d drink and  stink all with a / very good cheer.

When / they got near Cambridge, they ran into a bind,
The / colleges they said, (suddenly whispering) “noisy navvies must pay a fine”

(a little louder) So the / navvies built the station… a / mile out of town…(loud again)
Where they / wouldn’t disturb all the men in their gowns.
Well our train tracks and boat paths are amazingly loooooong (hold this note until everyone turns blue)
Built by the navvies the / heroes of song. 


One Railway Track (To the tune of one ginger beer)

One railway track, two railway track, three railway track, four railway track,
Five railway track, six railway track, seven seven railway track

You can't drive your train in my part of town, my part of town, my part of town,
You can't drive your train in my part of town, GO THROUGH ROMSEY! 

Railways built by Na-av-ies, Na-av-ies, Na-av-ies
Railways built by Na-av-ies, IN CAMBRIDGE TOWN!


Engine Number 9

Engine, engine number nine,
Running on the Cambridge line  (OR Rolling down the Cambridge line = sung by Mario)
At Ely Fens at half past nine
Back once more get home on time

All Aboard

Whooo Whooo

Mind The Gap


Cat Meditating on a Railroad Track

CAT MEDITATING ON A RAILWAY TRACK (LYRICS & SCORE VIA VICKY) 

Download a copy of the score HERE

A cat med-i - tat-ing on a Rail -road track. 

Cat! You'd better get, You'd better get back, Don't do that! 


This old freedom train

LYRICS

1: This old freedom train has been a long time coming

2: Ain’t nobody can’t afford it, so you’d better jump on board it

3: Gimme that freedom, gimme that freedom

4: Gimme that freedom, freedom, freedom (chk-a-chk), freedom, freedom, freedom (chk-a-chk)

 


Wild Rover

Popular English-language folk song (Roud 1173- although origins are contested)

I've been a wild rover for many's a year,
And I've spent all my money on whiskey and beer
And now I'm returning with gold in great store,
And I never will play the wild rover no more

And it's no, nay, never!
No nay never no more
And I'll play the wild rover,
No never no more

I went to an alehouse I used to frequent,
And I told the landlady my money was spent
I asked her for credit, she answered me, "Nay",
Saying, "Custom like yours I can have any day"

And it's no, nay, never!
No nay never no more
And I'll play the wild rover,
No never no more

I took from my pocket ten sovereigns bright,
And the landlady's eyes opened wide with delight
She said, "I have whiskeys and wines of the best,
And the words that I told you were only in jest"

And it's no, nay, never!
No nay never no more
And I'll play the wild rover,
No never no more

I'll go home to my parents, confess what I've done,
And I'll ask them to pardon their prodigal son
And when they have kissed me as oft-times before,
I never will play the wild rover no more

And it's no, nay, never!
No nay never no more
And I'll play the wild rover,
No never no more


Chatanooga Choo Choo

Chatanooga Choo Choo

To see a video of Sing! Community Choir singing this song click on the link below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YRr0LahsSGE

Chattanooga Choo Choo – Harry Warren and Mack Gordon

Verse 1:

Pardon me boy,
Is that the Chattanooga Choo Choo?
Track twenty nine?
Boy, you can give me a shine.

Verse 2:
I can afford (Can afford)
To board a Chattanooga Choo Choo (the Chattanooga Choo Choo),
I've got my fare (I've got my fare),
And just a trifle to spare (And just a trifle to spare).

Chorus 1:

You leave the Pennsylvania station 'bout a quarter to four,
(Read a magazine and then you're in Baltimore),
Dinner in diner, nothing could be finer
Than to have your ham 'n eggs in Carolina.

Chorus 2:

When you hear the whistle blowin' eight to the       bar,
(Then you know that Tennessee is not very   far),
Shovel all the coal in, got to keep it rollin'
(Woo woo, Chattanooga)
There you are
Woo, woo! (x3)

Verse 3:

I'm gonna meet (I'm gonna meet)
A certain party at the station (I'll be waitin')
Dressed in satin and lace (Yeah, yeah)
With a smile on my face (He used to call me his      'funny face')
He's gonna cry:
He's gonna cry (Wa, wa!)
Until I tell him that I'll never roam 
So Chattanooga Choo Choo,
Won't you choo-choo me home?
Choo-choo me home
He's gonna cry:
He's gonna cry (Wa, wa!)
Until I tell him that I'll never roam

Outro:

So Chattanooga Choo Choo, won't you choo- choo me,
(Chattanooga Choo Choo, won't you choo-choo        me),
Chattanooga Choo Choo, won't you choo-choo          me home?
Woo, woo!
Choo-choo me home!
 


The Runaway Train

The runaway train came down the track and she blew,  she blew,
The runaway train came down the track and she blew,  she blew,
The runaway train came down the track, her whistle wide and her throttle back, 
And she blew, blew, blew, blew, blew. 

The engineer said the train must halt and she blew,  she, blew,
The engineer said the train must halt and she blew,  she blew,
The engineer said the train must halt -- he said it was all the fireman's fault, 
And she blew, blew, blew, blew, blew. 

The fireman said he rang the bell and she blew,  she blew,
The fireman said he rang the bell and she blew,  she blew,
The fireman said he rang the bell -- the engineer said he stoked the fire well!
And she blew, blew, blew, blew, blew. 

The runaway train went over the hill and she blew,  she blew,
The runaway train went over the hill and she blew,  she blew,
The runaway train went over the hill and the last we heard she was going still, 
And she blew, blew, blew, blew, blew.


The Gospel Train Medley

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jevKw96XWC4

The gospel train’s a’comin’
I hear it close at hand
I hear the wheels a turnin’
And rollin’ thro’ the land

Get on board
Get on board
Get on board
There's room for many a more

Whoo Whoo x2

I hear the train a whistle
The rich and poor are ther
No second class aboard this train
No differnce in the fare

This train is bound for glory, this train. 
This train is bound for glory, this train. 
This train is bound for glory, 
Don't carry nothing but the righteous and the holy. 
This train is bound for glory, this train.

Oh when the Saints go marching in
When the Saints go marching in
O Lord, I want to be in that number
When the Saints go marching in

 


The Meditating Cat

http://audioboom.com/posts/6174408-the-meditating-cat

Download a copy of the score HERE

A cat med-i - tat-ing on a Rail -road track. 

Cat! You'd better get, You'd better get back, Don't do that! 


She'll Be Comin' Round The Mountain

"She'll Be Comin' Round The Mountain" (suggestion for Dave and Helen to change into train song!)

She'll be coming round the mountain when she comes 
She'll be coming round the mountain when she comes 
Coming round the mountain, she'll be coming round the mountain, 
Coming round the mountain when she comes 

She'll be driving six white horses when she comes 
She'll be driving six white horses when she comes 
She'll be driving six white horses, she'll be driving six white horses, 
Driving six white horses when she comes 

And we'll all go out to meet her when she comes 
Yes we'll all go out to meet her when she comes 
We'll all go out to greet her, yes we will all go out to meet her, 
We'll all go out to meet her when she comes 

She'll be wearing red pajamas when she comes 
She'll be wearing red pajamas when she comes 
Wearing red pajamas, why is she wearing red pajamas, 
Don’t know why but she'll be wearing red pajamas when she comes 

She'll be coming round the mountain when she comes 
She'll be coming round the mountain when she comes 
Coming round the mountain, she'll be coming round the mountain, 
Coming round the mountain when she comes 
Coming round the mountain when she comes


Freedom Train - Rollo Dilworth

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=duexPeKM-Ks

All aboard! Get on board! Just get on board! Freedom train’s a comin’. Get on board. 
Shout hallelujah! All aboard the freedom train 
Bound for glory where peace and justice reign. 
One day we shall overcome--can’t go back to where we started from! 
Freedom train’s a comin’. Get on board. 
Shout hallelujah! Gonna ride to glory land 
On to victory, I’ll join that heavenly band 
In the land where I will sing, songs of the people will set me free. 
Freedom train’s a comin. Get on board. 
You can hinder me here, but you can’t hinder me there 
the lord in Heaven’s gonna answer my prayer 
I am goin’ home to see the elders there, 
To sing the songs of hope for freedom everywhere. 
Get on board, ain’t gonna let nobody turn me ‘round 
We shall overcome--Oh Freedom 
Freedom train’s a comin’. Get on board.

 


We're Going to the Zoo

Going to the Zoo
(Tom Paxton- need to check copyright)
 

Daddy's taking us to the zoo tomorrow,
Zoo tomorrow, zoo tomorrow;
Daddy's taking us to the zoo tomorrow,
And we can stay all day.

We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo;
How about you, you, you?
You can come too, too, too;
We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo.

See the elephant with the long trunk swingin'
Great big ears and a long trunk swingin'
Snuffin' up peanuts with the long trunk swingin'
And we can stay all day 

See all the monkeys, they're a scritch-scritch-scratchin'
Jumping around and scritch-scritch-scratchin'
Hangin' by their long tails (scritch-scritch-scratchin')
And we can stay all day.

There's a big black bear, he's a huff-huff-puffin'
Coat's too heavy, he's a-huff-huff-puffin'
Don't get too near the huff-huff-puffin'
Or You won't stay all day.

Well the seals in the pool all honk honk honkin'
Catchin' the fish and honk honk honkin'
Little tiny seals all (high pitched) honk honk honkin'
And we can stay all day. 

(slower) Well we stayed all day and I'm gettin' sleepy,
Sittin' in the car gettin' sleep sleep sleepy,
Home already and I'm sleep sleep sleepy,
And we have stayed all day.

 We've been to the zoo, zoo, zoo;
 How about you, you, you?
 You came too, too, too;
 We're been to the zoo, zoo, zoo. 

Mommy's taking us to the zoo tomorrow,
Zoo tomorrow, zoo tomorrow;
Mommy's taking us to the zoo tomorrow,
And we can stay all day.

 
Copyright Tom Paxton

RAILWAY HISTORY OF CAMBRIDGE

 

On this page ...

In this section