North Blyth

CHORUS
North Blyth, North Blyth, fighting to stay alive
North Blyth, North Blyth, fighting to stay alive

The council in its wisdom, has decided to pull you down
With fact’ries to replace you, to bring jobs to the town

They’ll split up friends and neighbours, who lived there for many a year
Breaking up the community, dispersing them here and there

All eighty six houses, will be lost without a trace
To make way for the fact’ries dealing with toxic waste

Words & music by Wilf Mitford


Credits : Recorded at Project Studios, Newcastle Upon Tyne 1st August 1989.  Guitar & vocals, Wilf Mitford; Flute, Helen Robson
My husband, daughter & Wilf standing in front of the old projector at The Wallaw
My husband, daughter & Wilf at The Wallaw

It’s so interesting to reflect on this song now that my Dad lives in Blyth.  Being fairly close to Cramlington, Blyth is a place with lots of memories for us.  We had Wimpy Bar birthday parties as kids there, I had my first date at the Blyth Wallaw (now a pub!), we used to frequent the markets which are still going decades later, and we loved Ridley Park – something we’ve been able to share with our kids in recent years following a wonderful revamp. 

 

 

 

Picture of my mum, daughter, aunt & niece playing at South Beach Park with colourful beach huts in the background.
My mum, daughter, niece & aunt at South Beach

South Beach has also had a wonderful revamp with a vibrant fish & chip shop in situ now, a lovely adventure playground, and even the revival of the old beach huts in all their colourful glory!  

But I digress.  Back to the song.  Over at the other side of the harbour in North Blyth, nestled between the river and the sea, there’s a little collection of houses that in 1989 Wansbeck Council proposed to demolish to make way for a large processing plant.   The 86 houses mentioned in the song are still standing thanks to petitions and support from locals who formed the North Blyth Action Group.  After this public pressure the plans were reviewed by the ombudsman who intervened to stop the project from going ahead.

Wilf jokes that he’d threatened to sing the song outside of the council offices and that was the reason in the end that the plans didn’t go ahead.  Always a good sense of humour!  The song was published in local publication the News Post Leader.  It serves as another great example of how Wilf has documented local events in his songs.

Wilf enjoys his retirement now at Blyth with proximity to Cramlington where much of the family is, to decent cafes & pub food, good bus connections and the destinations from his childhood he has such fond memories of like Whitley Bay & Seaton Sluice.

Wilf & Erin on a seesaw at Ridley Park
Wilf & my daughter Erin at Ridley Park

Creative Commons License
North Blyth Song by Wilf Mitford is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://mitfordmusic.wordpress.com/.

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