Unity (Raise Your Banners High)

Words and Music: John Tams, 1984
Arrangement: Miguel Heatwole, 2016

Unity was written for a play ‘Six Men of Dorset’. It was about some early English trade unionists – the Tolpuddle Martyrs. They were transported as convicts to Australia in 1834. After massive protests throughout England the six men were pardoned and returned home two years later.

This song was picked up by striking English miners who sang it on picket lines. Today we enjoy singing it wherever people are standing together against injustice.


Bound together through the land
Keep the spirit – keep the way
Brothers, sisters make a stand
Unity will win the day

Raise your banners high
Strength to strength and line by line
Unity must never die
Raise your banners high

Those who stand against all strife
Those who stand for liberty
Fight to win a better life
Fight to keep the future free


Though the struggle brings you pain
Though the struggle brings you tears
Ours will be the final gain
We shall will hear the victory cheers


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