British Lions legend calls club organiser after hearing his song

Folk club organiser Brian Burke

Folk club organiser and Letchworth Rugby Club president Brian Burke. - Credit: Brian Burke

Folk music and rugby collided when a musician penned a tune that won the approval of a British Lions star. 

Baldock Folk Club organiser and Letchworth Rugby Club president Brian Burke is not averse to writing the odd poem or song to celebrate a plethora of subjects. 

Over Christmas there was a documentary on rugby league player Rob Burrow and the great fundraising carried out by his team-mate and friend Kevin Sinfield, who ran seven marathons in seven days.

Former Leeds Rhinos star Burrow has been struck down by motor neurone disease (MND).

Baldock Folk Club organiser Brian Burke

Baldock Folk Club organiser Brian Burke - Credit: Brian Burke

Kevin wore Rob's number 7 on his back with the aim of raising £77,000. He smashed that many times over, with more than £2 million raised.

On the Saturday of his week-long marathon, he met Rob in his wheelchair outside Elland Road and the embrace of the two RL legends was an emotional moment that could not fail to bring a tear to the eye.

“It certainly brought a tear to mine and really moved me,“ said Brian.

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"I usually write my best songs when I’m 'in the zone' as it were and I wrote the outline for this one, A True Pal, in only about 10 minutes. 

"The tune came into my head shortly after."

Brian gave his first performance of the song at the Baldock Virtual Folk Club that goes out every second Wednesday on Facebook, and thought no more about it other than it had gone down well from the likes received.

So it was a bit of a surprise just a few days later to answer a call from former Scottish and British Lions lock Doddie Weir, who had just heard the song. Weir also suffers from MND.

Doddie told Brian that the song had "really lifted" him.

Brian added: "I have offered the song to charity and maybe they can get a 'name' to sing it, so who knows what could happen.

"I also sent him one I wrote about the Lions, which I have also offered to the charity.

"So let’s hope that the combined inspiration from Rob to Kevin through me to Doddie can reap some real benefits to battle this cursed disease."