Welcome to The Pitmatics

The Pitmatics is an exciting new folk band with its roots in the language and music of the North of England. Original and cover songs tell powerful stories with great arrangements, superb musicianship and stunning harmonies.

“Absolutely spectacular – we have a bit of treasure in here tonight” – Sue Marchant, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire. 09/09/2018.

pitmatic, n. Pron. /pɪtˈmatɪkA patois used by miners in the north-east of England. aka Yakka. (OED)

..incredibly talented musicians playing both mining songs of old and their own original arrangements. A great foot tapping way to start the Saturday night line up!” Tessa O’Neill, Organiser, Dinglefest.

“.. a fantastic evening, an exceptional and very talented bunch of musicians – folk music it’s the new rock and roll – catch them if you can.” John Joe Dunne 2018

For more info please explore this website,  Contact Us and visit our  Facebook page


  • Ned Lawton: whistles, uilleann pipes, bodhran
  • John Birkby: mandola, guitar, banjo
  • Phil Underwood: melodeons, concertina, long necked banjo, guitar
  • Heather Harding: keyboard, tenor horn, accordion
  • Denise Dryburgh: percussion
  • Caroline Riches: fiddle


The first citation in the OED entry for pitmatic—the language of the miners and pit villages of the north-east of England—is taken from The Times of 21 August 1885, in which a bewildered writer reports on a visit to a colliery foreman’s office ‘thronged with men talking an unintelligible language known, I was informed, as Pitmatic’. Source: OED