Underneath The Arches

Album: The Flanagan And Allen Story (1927)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • "Underneath The Arches" might be described as a song for down and outs. A gentle duet, it was written by Bud Flanagan with a bit of help lyrically by Reg Connelly, and performed initially by Flanagan and Allen. It became the title of a 1937 film comedy in which the two of them starred.
  • In a TV programme broadcast April 19, 1957, Flanagan said he wrote the song at Derby in 1927 and performed it the following week at the Pier Pavillion, Southport. The arches concerned were those of Derby Friargate Station, but homeless people continued to sleep under arches for decades to come. In London - where Flanagan was born - the most infamous such arches were those under the railway at Charing Cross in the West End. In 1941, the two served the 50,000th meal at The Arches restaurant, a communal feeding centre in London's Kentish Town. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2

Comments: 1

  • Peter from Englaish CanalsI believe the arches concerned were, in fact, the Friargate Bridge over Ashbourne Road in Derby. Built by Andrew Handyside & Co, a local firm the bridge was transferred to Derby Council when the railway line was closed on the understanding that it would be maintained in perpetuity. It is now in a state of disrepair and a petition demanding the council honour their commitment has been started
    http://www.derbyphotos.co.uk/features/friargatebridge/
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Mike Scott of The Waterboys

Mike Scott of The WaterboysSongwriter Interviews

The stories behind "Whole Of The Moon" and "Red Army Blues," and why rock music has "outlived its era of innovation."

Leslie West of Mountain

Leslie West of MountainSongwriter Interviews

From the cowbell on "Mississippi Queen" to recording with The Who when they got the wrong Felix, stories from one of rock's master craftsmen.

Band Names

Band NamesFact or Fiction

Was "Pearl" Eddie Vedder's grandmother, and did she really make a hallucinogenic jam? Did Journey have a contest to name the group? And what does KISS stand for anyway?

Name the Character in the Song

Name the Character in the SongMusic Quiz

With a few clues (Works at a diner, dreams of running away), can you name the character in the song?

Peter Lord

Peter LordSongwriter Interviews

You may not recognize his name, but you will certainly recognize Peter Lord's songs. He wrote the bevy of hits from Paula Abdul's second album, Spellbound.

Howard Jones

Howard JonesSongwriter Interviews

Howard explains his positive songwriting method and how uplifting songs can carry a deeper message.