Bernulf

Bernulf

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Folk - Traditional |
Total Song Plays: 57   
Member Since: 2011
   Last Login: over 30 days ago

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Plays:

52

Song Description

Story of the hospital ship Rohilla, caught up in a fierce storm off the coast of Whitby, north east England, in the early days of the First World War. Although within site of land, the ship's crew and passengers couldn't be easily rescued owing to the weather conditions and terrain. There was much loss of life, despite most of the inhabitants of Whitby turning out to try and help.

Story Behind the Song

Some of the crew members came from our home town of Barnoldswick and this song was written as a tribute to them and all the other servicemen who perished in the First World War (WWI)

Lyrics

The Wreck of the Rohilla

A storm is raging in Whitby Bay - a biting north east wind and driving rain
A coastguard shelters from the storm keeping watch in the darkness before dawn
Then through the wind and waves he hears a sickening sound and his blood runs cold - a ship has run aground

So come on bonny lads, we can't let 'em down, no
We've got to pull them from the wreck, the wreck of the Rohilla

But the tide is high and she's rammed into The Scar
And if we launch our lifeboat now, well it won't get far.

This war will end all wars, or so they say but fighting men will still be killed or maimed
For this hospital ship the crew all volunteered and from Leith to Dunkirk the Rohilla steered
But with no guiding lights the ship is way off course and she's hit the rocks with an almighty force

So come on bonny lads, we can't let 'em down, no
We've got to pull them from the wreck, the wreck of the Rohilla

But the rocket lines we fired are falling short
Yeah, the rescue lines on jagged rocks are caught.

As she hits the rock, the hull is broken in two and the end comes quickly for many of the crew
Some brave souls they try to swim ashore we see them struggle and then we see them no more
But the wreck is just 600 yards away and surely we can save them before break of day

So come on bonny lads, we can't let 'em down, no
We've got to pull them from the wreck, the wreck of the Rohilla

But her lifeboats have all been swept away
And all we can do is watch and pray.

Fifteen lads from a cotton weaving town were called up to serve their country and their crown
Some people said those lads would have it good - they'd never face the trenches, the bullets or mud
Oh what an easy way to spend this bloody war! No-one could have guessed what lay in store

So come on bonny lads, we can't let 'em down, no
We've got to pull them from the wreck, the wreck of the Rohilla

Tell their folks in Barlick we'll do our best
But to God and fate we'll have to leave the rest.

I saw a new heaven and earth ... and there was no more sea

So come on bonny lads, we can't let 'em down, no
We've got to pull them from the wreck, the wreck of the Rohilla, we've got to pull them from the wreck of the Rohilla

Song Length
6:24
Genres
Folk - Traditional, World - European
Tempo / Feel
Medium Slow (91 - 110)
Lead Vocal
Female Vocal
Moods
Poignant, Moving

Subject Matter
War, Determination


Language
English
Era
1900 - 1920

Lyric Credits Heather Sheldrick
Music Credits Bernulf
Producer Credits Ainars Grinbergs
Performance Credits Bernulf
Label Credits AG Sounds