ChatterBank1 min ago
the alley alley oh
the childrens nursrey rhime goes : the big ship sails on the ally alley oh the alley alley oh alley alley oh on the last day of september
i worked out the alley alley oh was the manchester shipping cannal but what was the big ship ?
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Someone answered earlier and said about the Irish children referring to the sea as the Illey alley o,bear in mind a lot of the workforce on the MSC were Irish "Navigators" (navvies as they became known in the area) so called as they dug ,by hand, the NAVIGATIONAL canal's of the time.
A lot of them settled in the area and there families remained for generations,my own included, so originally it may have been from the Irish Illey alley o, but Anglicised.
One of the reasons for this Anglicisation may have been down to the geographics of the area. I recall as a child in 1960s and 70s that at certain points you could look down the alleys that ran between the back to back terraced houses and quite literally see the big ship sailing "down the alley".
The Docks are long since quiet and the area is now a Marina ,the warehouses of yesteryear are luxury flats.
The foghorns on the "Big ships" at midnight on new years eve at the Docks are still alive each year,but only in my mind,as I go back to those childhood days.
I may be an adult and moved away,but those days in Lowry's Salford have many happy childhood memories.