Gordano Civic Society

Founded 1956

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Fred E. Weatherly

Portishead’s first commemorative plaque was organised by the Society to mark the birthplace in Portishead of the Victorian lyricist, Fred E Weatherly.

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Fred E Weatherly was born in 63 Woodhill Road, Portishead, on 4 October 1848. He was widely famed for writing the lyrics for over 1,500 Victorian songs and ballads, the best known being those written for ‘Danny Boy’, The Holy City’, Roses of Picardy’ and ‘The Green Hills of Somerset’.

The unveiling at 63 Woodhill Road on 4 October 2003 was performed by Mr Frederick Weatherly (nephew) and Dr Anthony Mann (great-grandson), supported by some twenty members of the Weatherly family, many of whom had never previously met. The ceremony was concluded with a rendition of ‘Danny Boy’ sung by Pippa Marland accompanied by Rob King on guitar. The cost of the plaque was shared between the Society and Portishead Town Council.

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An article about Fred Weatherly featured in The Bristol Post on 2 July 2013. It covered a new book by the author's great grandson, Anthony Mann, which tells the story behind the song, based upon as-yet-unpublished family papers and letters. Our plaque (above) is mentioned. See also www.dannyboystory.com.

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Unveiling ceremony Fred Weatherly plaque Fred E Weatherly