Whenee’er I drink of Friezland Ale drawn from an old brahn bottle,
Ah feel as if a summer’s morn were runnin’ dahn me throttle,
A pint o’ sunshine at a swipe, all sparkle, grip and mettle,
There’s nothing like good ’ome-brewed ale for keepin’ folks in fettle.
There’s nothing etc.
There is no ale from barley brewed with ’alf so rich a flavour,
For English folks and English soil in ivry drop I savour.
It does not tie the legs or feet nor set the head a-tuppin’,
It mecks a ploughman feel a king becos it’s royal suppin’.
It floweth from the bottle’s mouth in foam lahk cream but richer,
It bubbles up in bunches rare lahk roses in a picture,
But never roses ’alf so fair, so dewy, cooil and sappy;
A mellow pot of Friezland Ale would meck a gatepost ’appy.
Whenee’er I drink this mellow brew with malt ‘n ’ops in plenty,
Ah’m ten year younger with a pint an’ if Ah’ve two Ah’m twenty;
The laughin’ stream runs dahn me neck an’ drahns tee-total teychin’
Ah’d goa ti chapel twice a day if Friezland Ale were preychin’.
The man who drinks good Friezland Ale grows ruddier than the cherry,
’E walks on daisies all ’is life in sunshine bright an’ merry;
For Old King Time goes ’and in ’and with Friezland folks a-laughin’,
’E knows their ’earts will nee’er grow old as long as they keep quaffin’.
Joined on repeats by Will’s family, Pippa, Cuthbert and Lydia, and Ray Padgett and Steve Gardham.
This is a contemporary song
Will’s source for this song was another member of Holme Valley Beagles, another Frank Hinchliffe, not the well-known Frank Hinchliffe of Crosspool who can be heard on other recordings on this website. It came down the line of descent from Arthur Howard’s family, the source of many of Will’s songs. It was written by the Saddleworth poet, Ammon Wrigley, and published in his book Songs of a Moorland Parish (1912), and set to music by Hugh Beech who performed it in the 1920s in pubs in the Oldham area. Friezland is on the Lancashire border near Uppermill.
When recorded on previous occasions Will included another stanza after the fourth stanza:
There is a lassie on yon hill, lives at an old farmsteading,
So fair to see, I often thought I’d take her to a wedding,
But womenfolk are hard to please and fond of fine apparel.
If Ah should wed I’d take for wife a good old Friezland barrel.