Tag Archives: Belfast History

Mickey Marley’s Roundabout – A Belfast Legend

Mickey Marley’s Roundabout 

A Belfast Legend

Mickey Marley's Roundabout header

Mickey Marley and his roundabout are woven into the fabric of Northern Ireland’s tortured history and generations of Belfast folk, catholic and protestant alike will have fond memories of grumpy old Mickey and his horse drawn roundabout.

As a child I remember vividly riding on his roundabout one glorious summers day in the Woodvale Park and this memory  always brings a smile to my face. Life was simple and innocent back then and the joy of a ride soothed my childhood soul and the world seemed not so scary for a few short moments.

Thank you for the memories Mickey!

 

 

The

Mickey Marley Story

Mickey Marley's Roundabout 2

Mickey Marley

Mickey Marley (died 28 April 2005) was a street entertainer from Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Born in the Markets area of Belfast, but spending most of his life on the Grosvenor Road in the Falls area of West Belfast, Marley was a common sight in Belfast City Centre for over forty years.

Drawn by his horse Joey Marley would tour the streets of Belfast with his hobby-horse roundabout. When he retired he sold the roundabout to the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum.

His local fame was enhanced by a recording of the song “Mickey Marley’s Roundabout” (written by Belfastman Seamus Robinson) which was a popular children’s request on BBC Radio UlsterBBC Northern Ireland also made a documentary on his life. The 1973 film followed Marley’s everyday life, against the backdrop of the heavy British Army presence on the streets of Belfast during the early years of the Troubles

 

Mickey Marley’s Roundabout – Barnbrack

 

Lyrics to Micky marleys roundabout

Micky Marley had a wee horse
He kept it at the back of the house of course
It wouldn’t eat grass and it wouldn’t eat hay
But it would eat sugarlumps all day
Micky got wood and wheels for a start
Then he sat down and made a wee cart
He hammered and he hammered and he foutered about
Until he had built a roundabout

Chorus
Round and round and up and down,
Through the streets of Belfast town,
All the children laugh and shout,”
“For here comes mickys roundabout”
And then he went from street to street
A penny a time and pick your seat
A hobby horse or a motorcar
Jump on son and hold the bar
The children’s faces smile with glee
Laughs and smiles a sight to see
You haven’t got a penny and your ma’s gone out
You can still get on his roundabout

(Chorus)
But then alas to his dismay
The roundabout was burnt one day
Poor Micky lost everything he had
And all the children were so sad
But his friends they gathered round
From every part of Belfast town
They hammered and they hammered and they fouterd about and built him a brand new roundabout

(Chours)
Hobby horses don’t get old
I’m winter beds they all feel the cold
But Micky knows each winter pass
The roundabout is still at last
No more we’ll hear the happy sounds
Of his roundabout in Belfast town
We thank the horse and the wee small man
For the joy they spread across the land

(Chours) x2

 

Showman Mickey Marley’s funeral

The funeral of one of Belfast’s best known characters Mickey Marley, immortalised in a Barnbrack song, was being held today.

Mr Marley, who was made famous in Barnbrack’s hit single Mickey Marley’s Roundabout, died last Thursday. He was in his mid 80s.

Requiem Mass was celebrated at St Peter’s Cathedral this morning followed by cremation at Roselawn.

Mr Marley, who lived in the Grosvenor Road area, and his horse-drawn roundabout was a familiar sight on the city’s streets for decades.

After leaving school at a young age, he saved up to buy his first pony and his roundabout was a huge success, first in the Falls area, then Belfast city centre and beyond.

After Sean McRobin, of local band Barnbrack, penned a song about him he became a local celebrity.

He became so well known that during a trip to Stormont in the 1970s, Prime Minister James Callaghan got his driver to stop so he could have a word with him.

His roundabout is currently being restored to its former glory in the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum in Cultra

Source: Belfast Telegraph 

 

 

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Why Ireland split into the Republic of Ireland & Northern Ireland

Disclaimer – The views and opinions expressed in these documentary are soley intended to educate and provide background information to those interested in the Troubles of Northern Ireland. They in no way reflect my own opinions and I take no responsibility for any inaccuracies or factual errors.

A brief overview of the history of Ireland and the events that led to the political division of the island.

Including: the Norman and Tudor conquest of Ireland, the break away from the Roman Catholic Church, the Union of the Crowns, the various Irish Rebellions, Oliver Cromwell’s effect on Ireland, Irish joining the Union, the Irish War for Independence, the following Civil War, and the recent violence in Northern Ireland known as The Troubles.

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Why Ireland split into the Republic of Ireland & Northern Ireland

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A Pocket History of Belfast – That doesn’t mention the Troubles!

John Daly brings Northern Ireland’s history to life. He lifts the lid on the antics of Baron of Belfast, Arthur Chichester and the second Marquis of Donegal.

Belfast is the capital and largest city of Northern Ireland. Most of Belfast is in County Antrim, but parts of East and South Belfast are in County Down. It is on the flood plain of the River Lagan.

Deaths in Northern Ireland.

Below is a documentary  about the history of the Troubles in Northern Ireland and gives some general background information to the roots of the {recent } problems between the two warring communities. The Loyalist , whom are proud of their connection to the British state and wish to remain part of thee United Kingdom  and the Republicans who want nothing to do with the British state and are fighting for a United Ireland. Two sides locked in an age old conflict , a remnant of the British Empire  and decades of bloodshed and slaughter in the name of a Free State. History is littered with the blood of the innocent and Northern Ireland sent to many to early graves and this website and my book is dedicated to the memory of the innocent victims of the Troubles and those they left behind.  I will be updating and adding new links on a regular basis , so please come back.

 

Also, I’d love some feed back, so please get in touch – my contact details are on the contact page – off course!!

Click on the image below to view documentary about Northern Ireland Troubles

 

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Since the Troubles began in the early sixties over 3500 people have been killed and injured and this website is dedicated to th Since the troubles began in the early sixties over 3500 people have been murdered or injured and this book is dedicated to all those innocent victims of the troubles and those they left behind. To those paramilitaries whom lost their lives during the “WAR” , well you choose to live by the sword and Good will judge you.

Please click on the picture below or follow the link  to view a list of those killed during the troubles and other stats and information of interest to those interested in the Northern Troubles.

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