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Pound a Week Rise

[ Roud - ; Mudcat 17226 ; Ed Pickford]

Karl Dallas: One Hundred Songs of Toil

Dick Gaughan sang Ed Pickford’s The Pound a Week Rise on his eponymous 1978 Topic album Gaughan. This track was also included in 2002 on his Greentrax anthology Prentice Piece. And he sang it in 1986 on his Scotland’s Trade Union Centre album of songs of the Scottish Miners, True and Bold. He noted on his now defunct website:

When the coal industry was nationalised into the National Coal Board, conditions and wages made an improvement but it wasn’t to last long. When Alf (Lord) Robens took over as head of the NCB his relationship with the National Union of Mineworkers was little different from any private employer and he laid the foundation for policy in the mining industry which led inevitably to the strikes of 1972 and 1974 which led in turn to the full-blown confrontation with the Thatcher Government in 1984/5. There is a nice irony in the “I was once a miner” line.

Malcolm’s Interview sang Pound a Week Rise on their 1987 Special Delivery / Topic Records album Breakfast in Bedlam.

The Demon Barber’s learned Pound a Week Rise from Dick Gaughan’s albums and recorded it in 2010 for their CD The Adventures of Captain Ward.

Siobhan Miller sang Pound a Week Rise on her 2017 album Strata.

Tony Wilson sang Pound a Week Rise on the 2018 anthology of North East Singers singing songs by Ed Pickford, The Hooky Mat Project.


Please find the lyrics for this song at Ed Pickford’s website.