Sleaford to hold its postponed Town Crier contest next month

Sleaford is to hold its second Town Crier contest, after having to postpone the event from last year due to the covid-19 pandemic.

Sleaford Town Crier John Griffiths will be hosting the second Sleaford Town Crier Competition in the market place next month. EMN-180611-113450001

The event hosted by Sleaford’s own Town Crier, John Griffiths, will take place on Saturday September 4 and will welcome criers from all over the country to battle it out in the Market Place, from 11am.

The 12 competitors will gather at Sleaford Town Hall at 10am before parading through the town at 10.40am to the market place.

The event was first held in the town in 2019 and this time will be joined by the Sleaford Farmers’ Market traders, to make it a great day out and a public spectacle to enjoy, says John.

He explains: “The competition itself will consist of two rounds – the Home Cry is in the morning from 11am, after which we will break for lunch, and the Theme cry will commence from 2pm followed by prize giving.”

The home cry allows the criers to shout about their home towns. The theme cry will challenge the criers to research, write and shout about a topic of Mr Griffiths’ choosing.

A panel of three judges will score the contestants on volume, clarity, content, accuracy in sticking to their scripts, bearing and manner. There are also awards for best dressed crier, best dressed couple, best dressed ambassador and best crier’s consort.

Mr Griffiths, who has been a crier for six years, said: “When I have been to other contests they have been really big. You always gather a crowd as it is a colourful spectacle and a bit of a festival.

“You have people around watching and cheering as the criers are such characters and fun. As criers we enjoy it and have a laugh, encouraging each other.”

Mr Griffiths carried out cries from his front garden during lockdown last year as part of the Clap for Carers.

If the event goes well Mr Griffiths hopes to repeat it and eventually host the British Championships.