Westgate - Johnny's Gone To The Westgate


Three songs we wrote for a Melbourne T.V. station as background for

a documentary on the history of the Westgate bridge when it opened

across the River Yarra.      



John J. Armstrong


My Johnny s gone to work on the Westgate

Building the great bridge he's working so high

With concrete and steel he's building the Westgate

A beautiful archway, up in the sky

But something's gone wrong. The dream has gone sour

The picture has changed now to sorrow and pain

In the mud of the Yarra the great span lies broken

With thirty four others my Johnny was slain


My Johnny left home that Thursday morning

He kissed both the children as he always would

He picked up his lunch then he smiled and he held me

He said that he'd be early home if he could

His arms were around me his grey eyes were smiling

So strong yet so gentle, I uttered a sigh

I reached up and put both my arms round his neck

Then I pulled his head down and I kissed him goodbye


It was just before lunch when I heard the news. I was listening to

the radio when the news flash came on. My next door neighbour, Marie

came running in with tears in her eyes. Her husband, Will, works

with Johnny on the bridge. The two men would drive together to

work every morning.            

"They said the bridge has collapsed!" she said

So with fear clutching at our hearts we drove together to the bridge

I was some time before we knew who was killed and who was alive

but suddenly I saw Will pushing through the crowd. He reached out for

Marie and they hugged and kissed. Then he walked over to me and put

his arms around me and said softly, "We can't find Johnny!"

I suppose I'd always known that my Johnny was gone.


You Flash engineers in your fancy apartments

And all of you planners in your offices so fine

Remember your plans hold the lives of your workers

Don't take any more men the way you took mine

They say that your bridge cost you two hundred million

And you say that the workers did not die in vain

But thirty-five deaths were all caused by your blundering

And your millions can't bring Johnny back home again