The New Navigators

by Johnny Handle
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Chorus :
Yard by yard and mile by mile,
Putting the cuts back into style,
Yard by yard and mile by mile,
They're the new navigators

For forty years in mud and clay,
Often in the old fashioned way,
And many a canal is alive today,
Because of the new navigators.

Clearing rubbish, felling trees,
Working with slime above your knees,
But if ye love the cut, join up with me,
And be a new navigator.

Doctors, students, vicars too,
Wives and husbands join the crew,
There's lots of jobs for you to do,
Among the new navigators.

They'll train you to drive a dumper truck,
Or a JCB if you're in luck,
But you must like playing in the muck,
To be a new navigator.

New locks at Ashton and the Frankton flight,
We've worked Big Digs in the summer night,
And at Droitwich and Chesterfield they're coming right,
Because of the new navigators.

So when you cruise on waters new,
Remember the work we've had to do,
Making space for me and you,
Thanks to the new navigators.
A song in praise of the efforts of the voluntary organisations such as the Waterway Recovery Group. The words and music were generously given to me by Johnny Handle whose great enthusiasm for the canals of Britain is obvious.