Wa'ney Island Cockfight facts for kids
As with many folk songs the lyrics differ between sources with well known local people and places being referenced in different regional versions. However, the central theme of a cockfight in which the "Bonny Grey" is an unexpected winner remains.
Presented below are a small sample of the lyrics sung by Martin Wyndham-Reed on English Sporting Ballads, Broadside BRO128 in which the cockfight takes place on Walney Island.
Come all ye cockers far and near
I'll tell of a cock-fight, when and where:
At Tummerel Hill I've heard them say,
The Northscale lads had a bonny grey.
Two dozen lads from Biggar came
To Tummerel Hill to see the game.
They brought along with them that day
A black to match with the bonny grey.
A sample of another set of lyrics from the Ballads & Songs of Lancashire, which places the cockfight in Liverpool, is presented below for comparison.
Come all you cock-merchants far and near,
Did you hear of a cock-fight happening here?
Those Liverpool lads, I've heard them say,
'Tween the Charcoal Black and the Bonny Gray.
|Martin Wyndham Reed||The charcoal black and the bonny grey||English Sporting Ballads||1977|
|Fiddler's Dram||Wa'ney Island Cockfight||To See the Play||1978|
Wa'ney Island Cockfight Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.