Derek Bentley

Album: The Anthology (1953)
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  • It's of a great adventure, to you that I will tell
    Of how they hanged a half-grown lad and how it all befell
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    Young Craig and Derek Bentley, they went out in the night
    With gun and knuckleduster just for to see them right
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    They climbed upon the roof so high and then looked all around
    And there they saw the men of law all gathered on the ground
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    "Look out, we're caught" young Bentley cried, "our robbin' days are done"
    "I'll see no prison" Craig replied, "while I've still got my gun"
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    He stood upon the roof so high and he looked all around
    And shouted to them, men of law, all gathered on the ground
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    "Stay down and stay alive" he cried, "keep clear of me" he said
    "Come up that stair another step and you'll go down it dead"
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    He was just a half-grown frightened lad who couldn't read or write
    But standing there with gun in hand he terrorised the night
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    The men came up to take him down, he pressed the trigger tight
    He shot the first one dead and then jumped down into the night
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    Young Craig he was a killer, for he shot the p'liceman dead
    But he was just too young to hang, the magistrates they said
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    At nine o'clock one Wednesday, they took young Bentley out
    And made a noose of hemp and rope and put it round his throat
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education

    It's true as you have often heard, that in this land today
    They hang the little criminals and let the big go free
    It was guns and comics, films of war that made his education Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 2

  • Lilith from West YorkshireOne small but important fact. When Bentley (allegedly) shouted to Craig, 'let him have it', the shot Craig fired then hit DS Fairfax,the only policeman on the roof at the time, wounding him in the shoulder. NOT a case of murder, even if Bentley and Craig had intended this. By the time PC Miles arrived, Bentley was in the custody of Fairfax and had said nothing more and Craig was showing off, firing wildly, probably with no intention of killing anyone. It was Bentley's bad luck that he did!

    These were silly little lads, I quite agree, and the killing of Miles was stupid and tragic. But so, I feel, was the killing of Derek Bentley.
  • Mark from London, EnglandLatter day Derek Bentleys wouldn't be hanged. There is no doubt that he was the victim of a biased and vindictive judge.
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