To my heart there is no dearer spot upon earth,
Than Newton-le-Willows, the place of my birth!
Oh! The world has allurements to tempt us to roam,
But it cannot supply the endearments of home. Dear Newton! Ill sing of thy sylvan retreats,
Of thy lanes, and thy tree-shaded dwellings and streets,
Of thy bridge oer the brook with its vista of bloom–
A vision of beauty and store of perfume!
I will sing of thy ancient, historical hall
Near the old ruined mill with its miniature falls
The strangers delight from the railway espied,
And to home-loving native the pleasure and pride
I will sing of thy beautiful breeze-rippled lake;
Where in childhood we made the glad echoes awake,
And sailed on its bosom, and fished in its stream,
And disported ourselves in the warm sunny beam
I will sing of thy hill by the side of the mere,
To which we resorted as evening drew near,
Where we fervently told of the depth of our love,
While the moon mildly beamed thro the branches above
I will sing of thy schools, to our infancy dear,
And the teachers whose memories we love and revere,
Who did idleness censure and industry praise,
And exhorted us ever to shun evil ways.
I will sing of thy church?it is good to be there,
To join in its service of praise and of prayer,
And to list to the parson expounding the Word,
Or persuading to piety those who have erred.
Sweet Newton-le-Willows ! how fain would I rest
Mid thy beautiful scenes with the friends I love best ;
And, spending our moments in labours of love,
Gain a foretaste below of the pleasures above.
-John. Henry. Lane
from J H Lanes 1914, Vol I History of Newton in Makerfield