'ACKNEY WITH THE 'OUSES TOOK AWAY
 
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I've been staying in the country for a week among the green
In a rustic little village where my pals have never been
And it might amuse the boys which don't get out of town
I kept my peepers open, and some notes I jotted down
I wouldn't live there always 'cos I'm London bred and born
Though it's nice to see the growing straw what pushes up the corn
I ain't a good describer, but my level best I'll do
To try and show the country from the 'Ackney point of view.

Chorus: You must try and fancy Regent's Park with parsley all around
With three-pound-tuppence 'taters everywhere beneath the ground
Where the sheep's heads with their bodies on are skipping all the day
Well, it's absolutely 'Ackney with the 'ouses took away.


Oh, it was a pretty sight to see the hares that run about
It's the fust time as I'd seen one with its coat the right way out
It's always in a hurry if a man and dog appears
And it looks just like a rabbit with a pair of donkey's ears
And there's most obliging bullocks nearly everywhere you go
They'll help you over hedges if you want them to or no
And they stand so very patient with their cowheels on the ground
You feel you'd like to pat 'em on their fourteen pence a pound.

Chorus: You must try and fancy Shoreditch with a farm-yard here and there
With pretty ducks and duckesses a-quacking everywhere
You can hear the chicken's husband cock-a-doodle all the day
And it's absolutely 'Ackney with the 'ouses took away.


Oh, it's pleasant in the morning when the milkmaid feeds the herds
To watch the little early worms a-looking for the birds
When half-a dozen shepherd dogs are sniffing round your shins
And honey-bees are chasing you with fardensworth of pins
The ploughboys working in the fields are healthy looking coves
I saw one eat a sucking-pig between two quartern loaves
And all among the barleycorns the tramps can rest a bit
And try on all the scarecrow's togs to see if they will fit.

Chorus: You must try and fancy Bethnal Green with turnips all in bud
Where the little dry land winkle strolls about the garden mud
And 'orses with no trams behind can bust themselves with 'ay
Well, it's absolutely 'Ackney with the 'ouses took away.
 
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Written and composed by Seymour Hicks & Walter Slaughter - 1901
Performed by Vesta Victoria (1874-1951)
 
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