The Grand Old Duke Of York

For nearly 25 years I’ve regularly had cause to thank 15 children:-

Rodney Bubb
Charlotte Bullock
Rachel Cockley
Simon Coray
Christopher Halpin
Christopher Goh
Georgina Griffith
Andrea Kietz
Emma Mangat
Dena MC Cullagh
Casey O’Connor
Jamie Sweeney
Chris Stockwell
Paul Tibbins
Stacey Trenchfield

So who are they and why am I so grateful?

Well they performed on a delightful, hour long video entitled “The Grand Old Duke Of York”. A compilation of Nursery Rhymes and children’s songs. The performances are assured, well sung and beautifully choreographed. The sets are bright and colourful and the accompaniments are varied, professionally produced and fun. For nearly a quarter of a century each of my grandchildren and now my great-grandchildren have been spell-bound by these young singers and performers. With no exaggeration at all the video has been played hundreds quite possibly thousands of times and has never failed to entrance each child that came to stay. My latest great-grandchild Ruby is two, each week she comes to stay for a day; during the day “The Grand Old Duke Of York” will get played at least 3 times, often more.

As far as I can ascertain the children were all pupils at the Barbara Speake Stage School. An interesting school with a number of very well known alumni; you can find them on FaceBook here  and there’s more about Barbara Speake and the school at Wikipedia here.

The tape was produced in 1993 by SR Productions; I dread the thought that one day it will break or the trusty old VHS player will give up the ghost. Still in the meantime must get back to singing with Ruby, now where are we, yes

In and out the dusty bluebells …

Postscript: See the comment below, kindly added by Tom Hardy, for a link to this on YouTube.

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5 Responses to The Grand Old Duke Of York

  1. Tom Hardy 18th January 2019 at 2:44 pm #

    On youtube now as this (much reduced quality version)

    • Charlie Markwick 18th February 2019 at 11:10 am #

      Thanks for this Tom. Was only just watching this again yesterday with my newest grandchild Franco who is 6 months’ old and he sat through the whole hour transfixed, despite my singing!! And since I wrote the article two new great-grandchildren have “appeared”: Otto and Arlo. The latter is only a few days’ old but Otto at 16 months has enjoyed it. May I ask what brought you to the article?

  2. Sally Reilly 10th October 2020 at 10:02 pm #

    I love this video – but a bit biased as I produced it, I think it has stood the test of time and still loved by all the children I have passed it on to.Sorry it has taken so long to get back to you.

    • Charlie Markwick 11th November 2020 at 10:39 am #

      Oh Sally. How wonderful and yes it has very much so. Would love to get in touch with you and talk. or 07768 856937

    • kufeblog 8th June 2022 at 7:24 am #

      Hey Sally, growing up, we had a copy of this VHS at home. I loved it sooo much, I would want my kids to enjoy it too. Could you be kind enough to convert it into a DVD so that we can preserve this precious thing?? Am so saddened that one day this will be no more…

So let me hear your story!?

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