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'If England wants a hand, well, here it is'

Comes a message o’er the ocean
A message to our sunny land
England calls Australia’s soldiers
We must answer her command
If England wants a hand, well, here it is…

The lyrics of this rousing, patriotic ballad were written by one of Australia’s most popular vaudeville (music hall) performers, with music by a noted Sydney songwriter. 'If England Wants a Hand, Well, Here It Is' was used on the soundtrack of the 1981 Australian feature film Gallipoli.

Year:1915

Location:Recorded in the United Kingdom

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'If England wants a hand, well, here it is'

Comes a message o’er the ocean
A message to our sunny land
England calls Australia’s soldiers
We must answer her command
If England wants a hand, well, here it is…

The lyrics of this rousing, patriotic ballad were written by one of Australia’s most popular vaudeville (music hall) performers, with music by a noted Sydney songwriter. 'If England Wants a Hand, Well, Here It Is' was used on the soundtrack of the 1981 Australian feature film Gallipoli.


Year: 1915

Length: 03:08

Production Company: Regal, G6881 (UK)

Credits: Performer: Harrison Latimer; Lyrics: Charles Vaude; Music: Joe Slater

Source: National Film and Sound Archive of Australia

Catalogue Reference: NFSA title: 229910


People: Performer: Harrison Latimer; Lyrics: Charles Vaude; Music: Joe Slater

Location: Recorded in the United Kingdom

Tags: Australia, song, music, popular music, Harrison Latimer, Charles Vaude, Joe Slater, Gallipoli

Subject: popular music


Image Title: If England Wants a Hand: lyrics

Image Source: Internet Archive


This 1915 recording of ‘If England wants a Hand, well, here it is’ is sung by Harrison Latimer. The lyrics were by Englishman Charles Vaude (1882 - 1942), a major figure in Australian vaudeville. He established arguably Australia's most popular patter act, Vaude and Verne, with Bill Verne (Will Warrington) during the 1910s and 1920s. The tune was written by Joe Slater (1872 - 1926), a music publisher and prolific songwriter who first established himself as a singer in Sydney during the early 1890s. He found his greatest musical success during WW I writing patriotic ballads like this one.

If England wants a Hand, Well, Here it is - lyrics

The name and fame of old England
Is threatened by foes today
Our liberty, our destiny,
Is in danger, so they say
Comes a message o’er the ocean
A message to our sunny land
England calls Australia’s soldiers
We must answer her command
If England wants a Hand, well, here it is
If England wants a Hand, well, here it is
They’ll show the enemy they’re as hard as nails
The boys of Victoria and New South Wales
South Australia and the West, my lads
Queensland is passing over his
So, by the dear old Motherland
They will proudly take their stand
If England wants a Hand, well, here it is
The bugles are loudly calling
The drums they are calling too
So rally round the flag, my lads
Show the world we’re Britons too
Down with tyrants, now, forever
Keep our dear old flag unfurled
Show our foes the British Empire
Is a big thing in this world
If England wants a Hand, well, here it is
If England wants a Hand, well, here it is
They’ll show the enemy they’re as hard as nails
The boys of Victoria and New South Wales
South Australia and the West, my lads
Queensland is passing over his
So, by the dear old Motherland
They will proudly take their stand
If England wants a Hand, well, here it is