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Do you know the earth beneath your feet once blew a dusty red
Sharp whistles in the distance lad rose all from in their bed
Do you know my lad that Consett town was filled with men of muscle
Men of steel and iron ore Front Street awash with bustle
Do you know my lad that when they tipped the slag into the night
Consett clouds shone bright as gold to guide my feet with tender light
Though quiet she did fall my lad a wasteland for the wind
Unto the wall of commoners we found our backs were pinned
In the black yet faced with sack to London once again
Like Jarrow men before we stood beneath a stubborn southern reign
As dark stumps in a moorland field, battered to and fro
By powers far beyond us lad, yet still the works they had to go
A century of history so helpless to defend
And what of you my precious lad on me you did depend
No more the clank of metal or the trains that run through night
I fought as hard as any could but shadows do not fight
And so their insults cut like knives to decimate this town
They even tried to pay me lad to pull the steel works down
Brick by brick and yard by yard your heritage there falling
And to the queues for pennies lad for many this our calling
No more the music of the works play in us their sweet song
The old ways disappearing all but little traces, gone
Black mountains no more grace our land from deepened seams of coal
Still watch the fire as she spits carnations from her soul
Though I no more now walk with you it’s this that you must know
Fire burned within us all that lit the heart a glow
She gave this town its industry and in her you are born
Yet hopes upon tomorrow lad lie broken and forlorn
I tried my lad to save for you a future forged in steel
So you my boy before the state would never have to bend or kneel
One hope filled wish I leave behind tis that you’ll not forget
That men worked hard with honesty to toil beneath a red rust sweat
Proud men, generations lad, that grafted day and night
Forget this not I beg of you, of this do not lose sight
Don’t dream it as a myth my lad, it’s true now can you feel
That in your heart their beats the truth young Consett man of steel

 

By Rob Beckwith





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