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Lichfield & Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust Limited

Stanley Holland  1922 - 2015


Being a eulogy delivered by Stan Holland at a reception to celebrate the successful campaign to save the route of the Lichfield & Hatherton Canals and to welcome the Government's steps to ensure that such problems will not recur.
The event was held on 23 October 2001 in the headquarters of the Institution of Civil Engineers in London, which had the great engineer Thomas Telford as its first President, a post that he held from 1820 until his death in 1834.

_ _ _ _ _

Here, where Telford's name holds sway,
We meet in festive mood today
To celebrate a major gain,
A giant stride in our campaign.
So sound the trumpet! Beat the drum!
For here have loyal supporters come
From every corner of the nation
To join this happy congregation.
"Congratulations and celebrations",
Cliff Richard used to sing,
And we have reason now to sing,
And sing like anything!
Triumphalism isn't right,
But when you've fought a fearsome fight
And pushed yourselves beyond all measure,
You're bound to feel some modest pleasure.

So, here's to all who fought and won,
To every blessed mother's son:
To David Suchet, Eric Wood,
Who both did more than mortal could;
To Robert Williams, known as Bob,
A man for every kind of job;
To Brian Kingshott and to Chris -
Now there's a name I cannot miss -
Who bravely faced the raging sea
(I think I'd rather him than me!)
Round every bit of coast, then Brussels,
To meet those mighty men of muscles;
To many more, the backroom boys,
Who work away without much noise,
To them and all the Other Ranks
We offer now our heart-felt thanks.
I well recall some ladies too -
It's nice to keep a few in view -
Working beyond the call of duty,
And bringing a welcome touch of beauty.

Before I end this peroration,
There's also a great Association
Whose badge, you see, I proudly wear,
Giving support beyond compare;
And Parliamentary colleagues too,
To them our thanks are also due.
It's not a moment to let pass
Before we've raised a brimming glass.
I give you now without more fuss:
We're bloody marvellous! Here's to us!

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