“As the original manuscript of his 1971 hit went up for auction, Maclean said he may have inadvertently created the idea that the song was in some way mysterious.
He said: “It’s incredibly obvious that it’s a history of popular music from the late Fifties to the late Sixties. It really is.
“And similarly with ‘the three men I admire most, the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost, they caught the last train for the coast’. Do you see what I did there? Honest to god, I didn’t think anyone would bother trying to decode that.”