The Railway Inn, Boundary Road, Portslade BN41 1GA
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Railway Roots

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Get your diaries out!

And you can now forget about our performances being on the Thursday before the first Friday of every month - from now on it really is the first Thursday of the month (except for January when it is the second Thursday). Much easier than before!

  • Thursday 5th April: Reg Meuross (support from Mike Reinstein)
  • Thursday 3rd May: Grace Petrie
  • Thursday 7th June: Tracey Curtis
  • Thursday 5th July: John Ward Trio (support from The Cheer Up Mollys)
  • August: Annual holiday
  • Thursday 6th September: Wob & Joseph Porter (support from Meriel's Secret)
  • Thursday 4th October: David Rovics
  • Thursday 8th November: Pete Atkin (support from Sally Ironmonger)
  • Thursday 6th December: Christmas knees-up


John Forrester: Thursday 1st February 2018


John Forrester sings songs of travel, adventure, lust, discovery, friendship, love and weather. A fine performer with an easy relaxed delivery, a warm openhearted voice, an unshowy guitar style and an infectious personality.

As well as his own shows, he has opened for many artists including Show Of Hands, Phillip Henry & Hannah Martin, Nick Harper, Rory McLeod, TV Smith, Sonny Condell, Robb Johnson, John Kirkpatrick and Fate The Juggler.

John's 2014 album "Outsider" received many rave reviews, and was described as "a contemporary take on folk and roots that is steeped in the great traditions. Its themes are universal; and it's a testament to patience, exploration and determination, but still has time for humour and humanity". His brand-new album "Restless" will be released on 23rd February.


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John Forrester appears at Railway Roots on Thursday 1st February 2018

John Forrester

"...weaves together folk-rock with Americana feel to create a distinctive and immediate sound… passionate intensity and swelling arrangements … reviews are always subjective, but this is something special" – R2 Magazine, 5 stars

"songs to captivate … rousing and anthemic … an utterly accessible collection of subjective, openhearted, and honest musings" – FATEA Magazine


Reg Meuross: Thursday 5th April 2018


Reg Meuross has appeared several times at Railway Roots' prevision incarnation, the Hove Folk Club, and many will know him for the extraordinary intimacy of his live solo performances.

Reg has that rare gift of being able to touch people through his songs and performance, on a really human level. His words and music paint pictures that remain with the listener long after the song has been sung. His new solo album, "Faraway People", brings wide-ranging stories, from the ravages of austerity and the injustice of the plight of refugees, to some of most beautifully disarming lyrics ever written.

He tours continuously, both in the UK and as far afield as Australia and South Africa. His live shows are spellbinding, capturing the attention and the hearts of audiences of all sizes, from festival stage to folk club floor with his beautiful tenor voice, captivating lyrics and storytelling and mesmerising guitar playing.


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 Reg Meuross appears at Railway Roots on Thursday 5th April 2018

Reg Meuross

"One of the finest singer-songwriters this country has produced" - Mike Harding

"Intelligent and thought-provoking songs, beautifully made and skilfully delivered" - The Times

Grace Petrie: Thursday 3rd May 2018


Grace Petrie began performing in 2006 as a solo vocalist and acoustic guitarist, and self-released an eponymous album that year, followed in 2007 by a second. In 2010, the advent of the Conservative-led coalition government influenced Grace towards an increasing emphasis on politically-focused songwriting, from a left-wing perspective. She made her debut appearance on Glastonbury's Leftfield stage at the invitation of Billy Bragg in summer 2010, and her widely-praised third album "Tell Me A Story followed".

Grace forms part of the Anti-Capitalist Roadshow alongside Roy Bailey, Robb Johnson, Leon Rosselson, Peggy Seeger and others. She has also performed gigs with other political folk artists such as David Rovics and Dick Gaughan, as well as political indie/punk rock bands.

She may look very young, but she's packed with years of talent and experience!


Web site:


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 Grace Petrie appears at Railway Roots on Thursday 3rd May 2018

Grace Petrie

"A powerful new songwriting voice" - The Guardian

Tracey Curtis: Thursday 7th June 2018


Tracey describes herself as an anarchist, a vegan, an activist and mother, who is based in Wales. She writes songs of conviction that are laced with humour, and camaraderie for working people and the wider community. Hard-biting lyrics on many of the (far too many) political horrors of the day are counterpointed by her lovely voice and her simple, but perfect, guitar accompaniment. Her latest release, "Whatever's Left" (2015), charts the journey beyond protest singer, through political and personal change to emerge through shades of folk, Americana and country as a more mature songwriting voice. The result is a collection of songs that provide a soundtrack to the modern struggle, with politics and with love, that will resonate with listeners everywhere.


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 Tracey Curtis appears at Railway Roots on Thursday 7th June 2018

Tracey Curtis

"A very good singer indeed ... this is political songwriting of the most direct kind" - Living Tradition

John Ward Trio: Thursday 5th July 2018
(Postponed from 1st March when the weather was unco-operative)


The John Ward Trio’s brand of folk music was born from John’s experience of life in a tough and gritty East Anglian fishing port that has seen more than its fair share of social change and decline.

The Trio's powerful three-part harmonies blend to give a rich life to John’s songs and to the traditional repertoire.  Accompanied by guitar, double bass, mandolin, harmonica, whistles and bodhran, and with the familiar, relaxed banter, stories and humour that John has become known for, the Trio delights folk club and festival audiences around the country. John’s unique style of bodhran playing and show-stopping solos are an audience favourite.

John has recently had airplay on Radio 2 and the Mike Harding Folk Show with the latest CD, "Sargasso".


Web site:


Support: The Cheer Up Mollys

The Cheer Up Mollys, based in Sussex, are a five-piece folk, acoustic, and Americana band made up of long-time friends and musical collaborators. Vocal harmonies are accompanied by guitar, ukulele, mandolin and bass, with song choices ranging from bluegrass and country to "rescued" pop songs.


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The John Ward Trio appear at Railway Roots on Thursday 5th July 2018

John Ward Trio

 "A singer and guitarist to watch out for" - The Times

"The best trad folk music set I have ever seen. Literally." -   Attila the Stockbroker

"Love the album [Sargasso] … cracking songs" - Mike Harding


The Cheer Up Mollys appear at Railway Roots on Thursday 5th July 2018

The Cheer Up Mollys

"Their stunning harmonies gave me goose bumps and their blend of unique vocal arrangements with beautiful mandolin, uke and guitar makes for a gorgeous performance!" - Amy Hill, Brighton Folk, Roots & Acoustic

David Rovics: Thursday 4th October 2018


David Rovics was born in New York City, and as a guitar-slinging singer/songwriter now based in Portland, Oregan, has toured in over two dozen countries, including at mass protests throughout North America and Europe.  In addition to his musical involvement with the anticapitalist movement, labor, environmental and antiwar movements internationally, he has shared the stage on a number of occasions with Tom Morello, founder of Rage Against the Machine. He has also shared the stage with Billy Bragg, Chumbawamba, Joan Baez, and Pete Seeger, and has toured extensively with Attila the Stockbroker, Anne Feeney, Tracey Curtis (see above), Alistair Hulett and our own Robb Johnson.


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 David Rovics appears at Railway Roots on Thursday 4th October 2018

David Rovics

"Absolutely brilliant. David Rovics says exactly what needs to be said" - Ian McMillan, BBC

Pete Atkin: Thursday 8th November

Pete Atkin, who is now a pretty regular visitor to Railway Roots, began writing songs with Clive James when they were both part of the Cambridge Footlights in the late 1960s — by any standards an exciting time to be involved in music. Clive and Pete found that they shared a love of the energy of contemporary pop and rock and roll combined with a regard for the achievements of the great Tin Pan Alley songwriters such as Rodgers and Hart, Cole Porter, the Gershwins, Johnny Mercer, and they saw no reason why these traditions should not be brought together, no reason why the words shouldn't matter as much as the music, no reason their songs' subject matter should be limited to arms and charms and moon and June.

The result was the beginning of a large catalogue of remarkable songs which found a growing audience through the half dozen albums Pete went on to make in the 1970s, plus many appearances on John Peel's legendary Radio 1 show, and live gigs at universities and folk clubs all over the country.

But although that partnership is now history, Pete still writes and performs superb songs on his own, as you will hear tonight. Don't be late - Pete's shows tend to sell out very quickly, and we do not offer advance tickets.


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Wikipedia entry:


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 Pete Atkin appears at Railway Roots on Thursday 8th November 2018

Pete Atkin