A timely reminder of the musical legacy of Fagan’s famous musical gatherings has appeared in the form of a new CD from local folk singer Fil Tebbutt.
Fil is one of the many musicians to have graced the back room at the pub during Tom & Barbara Boulding’s time as landlord and landlady and has now teamed up with several other regulars to produce an album combining both traditional and modern folk songs.
“When the martins take to the wing” features songs that Fagan’s regulars will have no doubt heard drifting across the bar, and one of them “The Girls of Glossop Road” even includes Tom’s own voice on the choruses.
It’s an excellent collection of tunes, all expertly sung and played, and great to play at home if you’re missing the craic. All profits from the CD go to charity, and you’ll probably have to visit the pub on a folk night to try and get hold of a copy. I heartily recommend you do.
As readers will know, Tom and Barbara Boulding, landlords of Fagan’s pub, retired in February after 37 years behind the bar. In the weeks before their retirement, Tom took time to record some of the stories and history behind the objects and artwork hanging on the walls of the pub, with pub regulars Tegwen Roberts, Ed Wynn and Dave Young.
One of the videos involves Tom talking about the day of the Hillsborough football disaster, which he remembers vividly. Did you know that the Mayor of Osaka once came to Fagan’s for his tea? Or that the former landlord Joe Fagan served in Bomber Command, and was a member of the Caterpillar Club? Hear these and other stories on YouTube @FagansStoriesSheffield.
Tegwen has also recorded a podcast about the early history of the Fagan’s – which goes back to the late 18th century – with support from Ed, Dave and producer Steve Dunbobbin. The podcast is a short dive into the early history of Fagan’s (formerly the Barrel Inn) told through the stories of some of the many people who have been part of the pub and its community over the past 200 years.
The podcast includes interviews with musicians who have played in the pub’s legendary back room, artist Pete McKee who created ‘the Snog’ mural on the gable wall, and CAMRA’s own Dave Pickersgill.
The podcast is available on Soundcloud; again just search for Fagans Stories Sheffield. There is currently one episode available, with another episode to come shortly with more stories from the pub’s community.
As Tom says, ‘It’s Fagan’s, so there’s always a tale’.
A new era
Fagan’s reopened under new management on Thursday 9 March.