Saturday saw last year’s postponed event take place in the Market Place, with a dozen criers (known as a ‘bellow’) from around the UK travelling to test their vocal talents in front of a panel of local judges, including Deputy Mayor Coun Linda Edwards-Shea.
Host was John Griffiths, Sleaford’s Town Crier for six years, who kicked off proceedings with his own cry about the history and attractions of the town, before inviting others to speak about their home patches.
A short rain shower soon dissipated to allow the competitors to say their second cry, devised on a set theme. The theme cry challenged the criers to research, write and shout about a topic of Mr Griffiths’ choosing.
The three judges scored the contestants on volume, clarity, content, accuracy in sticking to their scripts, bearing and manner.
The event was first held in the town in 2019 and this time (having been delayed by the pandemic, was joined by the Sleaford Farmers’ Market traders.
John said: “I’m really pleased with how it went. It went down really well with everyone - all the criers had a great day too.”
The winner of this year’s competition was Michael Wabe of Watton. Second was Elizabeth Anderson-Watson of Barnoldswick and third was Paul Gough of Nuneaton and Bedworth.
John added a big thank you to the staff at Sleaford Town Council for all their support and hard work to get the competition up and running.
“It was a fantastic day for Sleaford all round, thank you to the people of Sleaford for coming out to witness the Bellow of Town Criers.”