Harry Boardman

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Harry Boardman (1930–1987) was an English folk singer who was born in Failsworth, Lancashire. He sang both unaccompanied and accompanying himself on the Anglo concertina or banjo.[1] "Boardman has specialised in the lore, songs and dialect poems of his native Lancashire. A fine singer, his recorded and printed work has done much to preserve the otherwise ignored aspects of his local tradition."—Fred Woods.[2] He was active as a folk singer and collector of Lancashire folklore from the late 1950s with some collaboration from his wife Lesley. In 1991 the Harry Boardman Memorial Trust was established to increase public awareness of traditional music and related arts, including the folk music of the British Isles and local traditions of North West England.[3] Harry appeared regularly, together with Dave Hillary and Terry Whelan at the Wayfarer's Folk Club, at various locations, including the Pack Horse Hotel in Bridge Street, Manchester from the late 1950s.


  • Folk Songs & Ballads of Lancashire; compiled and edited by Harry & Lesley Boardman. London & New York: Oak Publications, 1973 ISBN 0-86001-027-9
  • Manchester Ballads: thirty-five facsimile street ballads; selected and edited by Harry Boardman & Roy Palmer. Manchester: City of Manchester Education Committee, 1983 ISBN 0904072029


Boardman's recordings:[4]

  • A Lancashire Mon, Topic Records (1973)
  • Golden Stream, AK Records (1978)
  • Personal Selection (1986)
  • Personal Choice, Cock Robin Music (2008)


  • New Voices (with the Watersons & Maureen Craik), Topic Records (1965)
  • Deep Lancashire (with the Oldham Tinkers et al.), Topic Records (1968; 1997)
  • Owdham Edge (with the Oldham Tinkers et al.), Topic Records (1970)
  • Trans Pennine (with Dave Hillery), Topic Records (1971)
  • The Bonnie Pit Laddie, Topic Records (1975)
  • Steam Ballads (with Jon Raven et al.), Broadside (1977)
  • The Iron Muse (with Louis Killen et al.), Topic Records (1993)
Only features on the CD version
The Hand Loom Weaver's Lament from Deep Lancashire is track ten on the sixth CD.


  1. ^ "Harry Boardman: traditional and Lancashire; acc. concertina/banjo ... Gatley SK8 4HS".-- The Folk Directory; 1988. London: English Folk Dance & Song Society; p. 34
  2. ^ Woods, Fred (1980) The Observer's Book of Folk Song in Britain. London: Frederick Warne; p. 93
  3. ^ The Harry Boardman Memorial Trust: working for folk arts in the North West of England, 1991
  4. ^ "Harry Boardman - A Lancashire Mon".

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