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Our Town Crier Wins National Title

Friday, November 6th, 2009
Alistair Chisholm - National Town Crier Champion
Alistair Chisholm – National Town Crier Champion

Dorchester Town Crier, Alistair Chisholm has done it again. For the third time in a row, our very own local Town Crier has seen off the competition at the National Town Criers Challenge Cup in Hastings and romped home in 1st place.

The flambouyant town crier lifted the crown for the third time in a row and has now won the coveted award an amazing seven times.

Speaking after the competition at the Hastings event he said …

“I think the hearts of the other criers might sink when they see I have pitched up. I am thinking of offering my services as the host for next year. It does seem a bit of a shame that the town crier in Hastings doesn’t have a chance to enter the competition because he is the regular host.”

The Town Crier competition has a long history, having started in 1937. The event consists of two rounds, with town criers required to extol the virtues of their home town in round one and the host town in round two. Alistair Chisholm took the theme of the the Hastings’ trolley bus for his second cry as he went up against 17 other competitors from around the country.

The judges were looking for a performance that had sustained volume, good clear diction and clarity and inflection within each piece. The judges were obviously impressed with Alistair’s cry.

“I think it’s to do with the inflection of my cry – a lot of criers concentrate solely on their cry, but I think that if you can get a bit of expression into a cry, it makes it more interesting to listen to,” he said.

After the competition all the town criers were paraded through Hastings and joined local residents for a fireworks display.

Congratulations to Alistair – look out for him the next time you are visiting.

It’s good to know that at my advanced age I seem to be able to do some things quite well !

I’ve written to Hastings Borough Council offering to host next year’s Championship so that Jon Bartholomew, town crier of Hastings, can enter the competition which he has played host to for about ten years.

Next year I intend to compete for the British title ( to be held in Yorkshire in August ) and in a World Championship to be held in Chester in June.

I’m wondering if this year’s edition of the Guinness Book of Records will make mention of the fact that Dorchester holds the World Record for the largest number of people (280) to give a town cry all together ?

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