St Madoes

Songs made for St Madoes, to mark the new church and community centre.


Tune: Goodnight And Joy version

Everybody welcoming, a good place for the kids to grow

Never a bad experience, living in St Madoes

First were the line of three stones that sit before our Primary

Then the Pictish Standing Stone, that stood here fifteen hundred years

The Hawkstane shows where the Hays land ran, all the way from Luncarty

Then at last the church was built in the year of 1798

The parish church it stood alone, the castle for its neighbour

Till the old brick school was built, that's now the community centre

Farms and fields and woods all round, Pitcoag, Gallowflat, Cairnie

The busiest place for miles and miles was at Inchyra Ferry

After the War house builders worked, A and J Stephen and G S Brown

Pitfour was the first row, then toward the river the roads stretched down

Sidlaw Park and Cairnie Road, Madoch Square and Druid's Way

Ochil View and Priorland, The Nurseries and Elcho Lane

Community spirit then and now, we look for for each other

Not like living in the town, where you're not sure who is it lives next door

But we need more for our teenagers, and somewhere we all can meet

So here comes our new church and centre, it makes our place complete

The information for this song came from a discussion in the Manse, and Ewan's research. 

Find out more about the church and the new Madoc Centre at


Tune : Mrs McGrath

Dave Strachan o Nethermains, worked this farm since fifty three

Born in Strathhaven, schooled till fourteen, portered at Forfar Auctioneers

Army service over in Hamburg, invalided hame, then set free

Farming at Tealing above Dundee, my two brithers and ma mither and me

Came tae Nethermains by the Tay, laid the borrowed money down

Next year brought my new bride home, a farmer's daughter frae Forfar town

Two hundred and forty acres, half o it lighter, half o it clay

First thing ye ask about Carse land, “What height above the River are ye?”

Clay is clay, it's hard tae wark, a Standard Fordson's what ye want

But if yer farm wis aa light soil, ye wouldny ca the Queen yer aunt

One year pease or else potatoes, next year ye'll pit grain in the field

But better not risk two years on the trot, ye'll never get a decent yield

Rise at three and wark till dark, plus Charlie and Archie graftin hard

They came at fifteen, did their turn until aa three o us retired

Crops and berries, beasts as well, the Island grass made them get fat

Brought them ashore an sold them, wi twice the weight we bocht them at

Bocht a boat tae carry them over, a steel coracle like a big tin drum

Tied a motor boat to each side, Mugdrum Island here we come

Woods and quarries alang the River, Dumgreen Farm then Clashbenny

Hill Farm, Mains o Errol, then Tayfield next tae me

Dave Strachan o Nethermains, worked this farm since fifty three

Now retired, leased the land out, no more risin up at three

No more risin up at three

Rev Marc Bircham took Ewan to meet Dave in his house on Nethermains Farm


Tunes : for chorus I'll Aye Ca In By Yon Toon, for verse Reel O Stumpie

Hawkstane and Leetown, on the way from St Madoes

Chapelhill and Cottown, on the way to Errol

Ben and Evelyn both grew up in Charlestown at the Chance Inn

Where you didn't sell drink, you worked the land, a holding called a pendicle

Her grandpa and her grannie had both worked at the Brickie trade

When Cottown was a boom town, though never a fortune there was made

June's great grandfather drove the train up and down the Brickie Line

Carrying bricks from Pitfour Works to send them off far and wide

He was there when the first brick, and the last brick both were made

Then June played by the empty kilns, though that made her mother a little afraid

Ben's grannie bought some trams that used to do the Trongate run

And made them into holiday lets so folk from Fife could have some fun

A Stewart traveller family came to camp there in their black bow tent

Evelyn's grannie was a soft touch, she'd be sad when away they went

Bob was born in Chapelhill, in a house that bears his mother's name

Bought for five and seventy pounds, quite a bargain you may say

A visitin wife found that the toilet had no lock, which made her fret

His father said, “Twenty five years and no-one's stolen a bucket-full yet”

Bob left St Madoes School to fish for salmon where the Earn flowed

Then he was a brickie with Stephens the Builders, working down the Cairnie Road

He wanted to join the Navy, but his mum and dad would not agree

So he shovelled coal on merchant ships, as a fireman bold he sailed the sea

Major Simpson owned the Hall, treated his tenants so unfair

He thought more of his garden statues than he did of the workers there

He sent his Wully Shakespeare statue down to the public hall to stand

The cycle club came birlin by, and they always waved to Wully their hands

Jimmy's mother lived in Leetown, Number Six, bedded ill

He took his horse to her bedroom to give her a cheery tonic pill

When a new child started at the school, Jimmy got out his horse and cart

And took the wee one riding there, to give each one a proper start

St Madoes School, built of brick, you paid a few pence every month

With your wee blackboard and lump of chalk you tried to make your letters and sums

A teacher, Mr Anderson, said he would bring a seahorse for a show

So the kids went off to meet his bus and carry his beast in a wheelbarrow

Evelyn Robertson, June Laidler, Bob MacLellan, Ben Stephen

Tell the stories, keep the photies, make the old days live again

Evelyn, June, Bob and Stephen shared their collections of knowledge about the area and memories in Evelyn's Hawkstane house, and Bob also took Ewan on a walking tour around the houses. The above song and the two below all come from their stories.


Tune: Wha Saw The 42nd

We were the tattie howkers, we were the Elite Tattie Squad

On the back o an open lorry rattlin doon the country roads

Bob's aunt an grannie ruled the roost, told the gaffer what wis what

Chose who got which end bits, so the wee-est wan got the bit that wis short

Twenty yards was the length of wan bit, half a bit wis just ten yards

Eight or nine years got a half bit, my but the work wis cauld an hard

Warm yer hands upon the tractor, dodge the part that'll burn yer skin

Hope the digger has a breakdown, so that you can pack it in

Lewis Stephens had the field at the end of Leetown Row

He'd start his tractor, point it straight, and let it turn its own furrow

He'd jump off an grab the tatties, fling them in the bogie, then

Jump back on at the end o the field, then turn the wheel to start again


Tune: Blood Red Roses version

Elizabeth woke one morning bright, roll on

The floor it was a shiny sight, roll on

She stepped in water up to her knees

All Inchyra were not pleased, roll on

Oh, the River Tay, never very far away, roll on

Cottown School got flooded too, roll on

Not just once, quite a few, roll on

Clay for the walls, thatch for the roof

That won't make it waterproof, roll on

Down in the reeds at Cairnie Pier, roll on

They'd go swimming every year, roll on

In reed changing rooms they went

One for the ladies, one for the gents, roll on

A J Stephens built a boat, roll on

Down the river it would float, roll on

They dug from the sandbank, full to the brim

Then floated back when the tide came in, roll on

The River starts starts in the Cairngorm hills, roll on

Runs down Ben Lui as a little rill, roll on

One hundred and twenty miles, no less

Through the land to east from west, roll on

It's got pearls of lustrous hue, roll on

It's got wild beavers too, roll on

The River Tay rolls to the sea

Rolling through our history, roll on

The next song was written in 2010 by Ewan with a class in St Madoes Primary, for the On The Hoof project.


(Tune: Fitba Crazy)

He's wireless crazy, he's wireless mad

That crazy electricity, he got it from his dad

James Bowman Lindsay, he lived down in Dundee

But he came here to Glencarse with his electricity

He took a lot of glass jars, he put them in a line

He filled them up with chemicals and said 'That will be fine'

He stretched out his wires, a kilometre long

To send across the River Tay a signal very strong

The people said, 'He's crazy, wires can't do that'

James just stood there grinning like a Cheshire Cat

Down into the water he put the wire ends

Over to the other side the signal he did send

One hundred and seventy years ago, he was state of the art

He wasn't wireless crazy, he was wireless smart





䐀愀瘀攀 匀琀爀愀挀栀愀渀  伀 一攀琀栀攀爀洀愀椀渀猀
(㈀ ㄀㜀ⴀ 㜀ⴀ㈀  ㄀ ㄀㘀)


 Not sure if following is latest version

To be checked

䘀漀甀爀 䘀漀氀欀 吀攀氀氀 伀昀 䘀漀甀爀 倀氀愀挀攀猀
(㈀ ㄀㜀ⴀ 㜀ⴀ㈀  ㄀ ㄀㘀)


䔀氀椀琀攀 琀愀琀琀椀攀 猀焀甀愀搀 渀攀眀
(㈀ ㄀㜀ⴀ㄀㄀ⴀ㈀㐀 ㄀ 㔀㈀)


一攀瘀攀爀 嘀攀爀礀 䘀愀爀 䄀眀愀礀
(㈀ ㄀㜀ⴀ 㜀ⴀ㈀  ㄀ ㄀㘀)

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