Home CD Songbook Mining Songs Touch of Humour Miscellany

Words & music

 Ed Pickford © prs


The stream was black from a miner’s back

In the place where I spent childhood days

I built a camp in the pit-prop yard

I remember the mines had ladies names.

From the swings I could see the men

On haunches as they crouched in line

But that was then and now I think

What a strange lover is a coalmine.


Chorus:

Strange lover that’ll kill a brother

Crucify a wife and mother

Sleep with a man at the same time plan

To bring him down, down, down

What a strange lover is a coalmine.


My friend Joe worked 50 years

Deep in the belly of a Durham mine

All those years he shed no tears

Durham men are not that kind

His brother died in a fall of stone

He seemed a hero at the time

But that was then and now I think

What a strange lover is a coalmine.


Chorus:


Joe survived ‘til he grew old

But he never did forget about the coalmine

He loved the coal and the Union too

He had a miner’s pride about his own time                              

I remember the hot Julys

The banners that flew in the Durham skies

I remember the hopes and the fears and the lies

What a strange lover is a coalmine.


Chorus:




Strange Lover is a Coalmine Tom McConville Barrie & Ingrid Temple The Barra MacNeils Pegleg Ferret Di Craddock