Kendal Street Choirs Festival 2023 – songs
Jun 2023

Author: David Burbidge

Here are some of the songs we will all be singing together at the massed sing on Saturday morning, July 1.

There are recordings of the harmonies and tunes being sung individually on the festival sound site:


Harbour: This song will be led by Anna Tabbush who writes:

I wrote Harbour in 2020 in response to the Syrian refugee crisis.  With the appalling response by the British press and government to the tragedies that were happening at sea, I felt mine was a lonely voice in wanting a more welcoming and compassionate country to live in. I wrote the song so that others with similar opinions to me could sing together and know that they were not alone and that together we could change our society for the better.

“Harbour is more popular than ever now that the people of the world are feeling driven to help the millions of refugees from Ukraine. I would like my song to help all of those fleeing war zones. My hope is that my song will help ensure that people arriving here are met with warmth, compassion and generosity. So please keep singing and sharing it. Keep campaigning to reduce the unnecessary bureaucracy that prevents people from finding a safe passage into our countries. Thank you for your belief in the power of song.”

Zdravljica: The only overtly pacifist national anthem in the world written by Slovenia’s national poet France Prešeren: “Long live all nations who long for that bright day when over earth’s habitation, no war no strife shall hold it’s sway; who long to see all people free, no more shall foes but neighbours be.” There are other local connections: the Lake District national park is twinned with Slovenia’s Triglav National Park. Sedbergh near Kendal is twinned with Zreče in Eastern Slovenia. And our Lakeland Voices choir often sing with Slovenian choirs on our annual visits (by train) including an ascent of Slovenia’s highest mountain Triglav, where we sang on the summit alongside almost 100 Slovenian climbers. Led by David Burbidge. Here is a phonic transcription – how the words sound to English speaking ears:

Pree-yat-lee obro-deelay so tertay vintsay nam sladko

Kee-narm o-zheelya zhee-lay sert-say raz-yas-nee in oko

kee-to-pee….usay sker-bee,  u po-terti per-see up bu-dee

kee-to-pee….usay sker-bee,   u po-terti per-see up 

u po-terti per-see up bu-dee

Zhee-vay nai usee narodee kee hrepenay do char-kart dan

Da ko-der sont-say hodee prepeer iz sveta bo pregnan

Da royak…prost bo usak ,  Ne vrag le sosed bo mayak

Da royak…prost bo usak,  Ne vrag le sosed bo

Ne vrag le sosed bo mayak

Sing Out: The music is from an old Shape Note song called Russia and the words are by the late Sarah Morgan and David Burbidge. It’s sometimes said there are two ways of singing Shape Note songs: loud and very loud. I hope you will sing this one with gusto – “Our songs of justice, songs of peace, our songs of hope will never cease.”  Led by David Burbidge.

Thula Sizwe: Hush my nation do not cry. Song from Zimbabwe led by Lucky Moyo who is at the festival with his singers from Zimbabwe, Uzambezi. Please note: Lucky normally teaches this song by ear, but we have made a score to help those who are unable to sing without one. Please bring a pen and make any necessary corrections to the score.

Chartist Anthem: Chartism was a working-class movement which emerged in 1836 following the failure of the reform act. It started in London but spread throughout the rest of the country and was most active between 1838 and 1848.  The Chartists campaigned for better conditions for workers, and demanded six conditions which included universal suffrage, equal electoral districts, pay for members of parliament, vote by ballot, abolition of property qualification for MPs, and annually elected Parliaments. Five of their goals were successful – and are taken for granted today. Led by Kate Howard from Moniaive in Dumfries and Galloway, South West Scotland.

Sing John Ball: The 14th century priest John Ball inspired the Peasants’ Revolt: “When Adam delved and Eve span, who was then the gentleman?” He also inspired this song by Sydney Carter. On one of our singing walks through London we sang this at the Supreme Court: “All shall be ruled by fellowship I say, when we are ruled by the love of one another….” Led by Manchester Community Choir leader Rose Hodgson who have kindly given us permission to use their arrangement.

Internationale: Billy Bragg’s famous reworking of this timeless classic has many inspiring lines in its call to rise up against the forces of oppression, to “let racist ignorance be ended,” to not build walls of hatred to divide us – and to remember that “Change will not come from above.” Led by Rebecca Denniff from Whitby.



Sing out the cold sing in the sun

Sing out for times that are to come

Sing out the old sing in the new

Sing out the false sing in the true.

Sing out to set the spirit free

Sing out in strength and unity

Our songs of justice songs of peace

Our songs of hope will never cease

Sing out for comrades gathered here

Sing out for friends both far and near

Our voices raised in harmony

We sing for peace and unity


Pri-jatli, obrodile so trte vince nam sladko

ki nam oživ-lja ži-le, srcé raz-jasni in oko,

ki vtopi…….vse skrbi, v po-tr-tih pr-sih up budi!

ki vtopi…….vse skrbi, v po-tr-tih pr-sih up

v po-tr-tih pr-sih up budi!

Živé naj vsi na-rodi, ki hre-pené do-ča-kat’ dan,

da, koder sonce hodi, prepir iz svéta bo pregnan

da rojak….prost bo vsak, ne vrag, le sosed bo mejak!

da rojak….prost bo vsak, ne vrag, le sosed bo

ne vrag, le sosed bo mejak!


When you’ve crossed the stormy waters

Come walk ashore

Bring your sons and bring your daughters

Wander no more

Chorus:   For our door is always open

and our hearth is always warm

When you need a place to shelter

We’re a harbour in the storm.

2. There’ll be time for rest and sleeping

Come walk ashore

There’ll be space for peace and healing

Wander no more

3. For in days of lesser fortune

Come walk ashore

We may need a door to open

Wander no more


Thula sizwe unga-bokhala

Uje-hova wakho uzo-kung-qobela

I Nkulu-leko sizo-yithola

Ujehova wakho uzo-sing-qobela

Oh oh freedom, oh oh freedom

My good lord, oh good lord will guide me


1.Who’ll be the lady, who will be the lord?

When we are ruled by the love of one another

Who’ll be the lady who will be the lord?

In the light that is coming in the morning.

Chorus: Sing John Ball and tell it to them all,

Long live the day that is dawning

I’ll crow like a cock, I’ll carol like a lark

In the light that is coming in the morning.

2. Eve is the lady, Adam is the lord

When we are ruled by the love of one another

Eve is the lady, Adam is the lord

In the light that is coming in the morning


3. Labour and spin for fellowship I say

Labour and spin for the love of one another

Labour and spin for fellowship I say

In the light that is coming in the morning


4. All shall be ruled by fellowship I say

All shall be ruled by the love of one another

All shall be ruled by fellowship I say

In the light that is coming in the morning 



1.A hundred years, a thousand years,

we’re marching on the road
The going isn’t easy yet, we’ve got a heavy load, 

We’ve got a heavy load

2. The way is blind with blood and sweat,

and death sings in our ears
But time is marching on our side, we will defeat the years,

We will defeat the years

3. We men of bone of shrunken shank,

our only treasure dearth,
Women who carry at their breast heirs to the hungry earth,

Heirs to the hungry earth

4. Speak with one voice, we march, we rest, and march again upon the years
Sons of our sons are listening to hear the Chartist cheers
To hear the Chartist cheers

There are recordings of all the parts for the songs sung separately on our online Audiomack recordings site here:


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