Poppylands of Overstrand

from by The Dog Days of Summer

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about

In 1883, journalist and travel writer for the daily telegraph, Clement Scott was asked to report on the new holiday town Cromer. He was taken aback by the carpeted fields of poppies along the cliffs and a pretty little cottage ‘the Millhouse’ where he became a regular visitor. His newspaper features on the area proved very popular which aided Cromer to become a popular and exclusive resort.

His favorite place was at the bottom of tower Lane, where the remains of an old church tower and graveyard sat on the edge of the eroding cliffs.
The 4th verse in this song is actually taken from one of Clement Scott's most famous poems ‘the garden of sleep, which was put to music and performed in music halls around the country. (I couldn’t find any trace of this music therefore; the music in our version is original). Clement Scott died in 1904 and the Poppylands popularity began to dwindle. In 1916 the cliffs which held the tower and graveyard finally plunged into the sea.

lyrics

The Poppy Lands of Overstrand


Stepped off the train from London, In this new holiday town
Was looking for adventure, and to see what’s about
He couldn’t find no place to stay, So he took to the cliffs
Where he found a pretty place, with towering windmill opposite

Sleep! Sleep!
From the Cliff tops to the deep
Sleep! Sleep! Sleep!

He knocked on the door and enquired, are there any vacancies
He was greeted by Louie, she was only nineteen
“Yes we have a room for you” she said with a twinkle in her eye
“The room with the best sea view, it’s right next door to mine”

Sleep! Sleep!
From the Cliff tops to the deep
Sleep! Sleep! Sleep!


He strolled along the cliff tops, where the fields were ablaze
With rows and rows of poppies, how the beauty did amaze
And at the end of the Dead End Lane, was the old church tower
With its gardens graveyard remains, The sea below waiting to devour

Sleep! Sleep!
From the Cliff tops to the deep
Sleep! Sleep! Sleep!

In music of the distance, with eyes that are wet,
It’s there I remember, and there I forget!
O! heart of my heart! Where the poppies are born,
I am waiting for thee, in the hush of the corn.

Sleep! Sleep!
From the Cliff tops to the deep
Sleep! My poppy-land
Sleep!

credits

from Dog Days, released November 7, 2012
Words and Music by Jo Carley
Except words for fourth verse are taken from 'the garden of sleep' a poem by Clement Scott

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