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Oyez! oyez! oyez! Otley holds town crier competition

town crier terry

Published by The Stray FM News Team at 12:12pm 23rd September 2018. (Updated at 12:14pm 23rd September 2018)

Town Criers from across the country with something to shout about will descend on the West Yorkshire market town of Otley on Sunday, September 23, to take part in the First Otley Open Town Crier competition.


Otley is home to its own award-winning town crier and 2017 national champion,  Bellman Terry Ford, who will welcome criers from Newport to Nuneaton and Skegness to Sleaford to take part in the competition.

Held on the same weekend as the renowned Otley Folk Festival, the event will see 11 Town Criers in their finest regalia plus their consorts parading from the town council offices at Otley Core on Orchard Gate to the town's historic Market Place for the start of the competition at 11.30am.

Competing under Loyal Company of Town Criers rules, contestants will be required to offer their 'hometown cry' extolling the virtues of their hometown in the morning, followed by a 'subject cry' on Chippendale in the afternoon.The latter is inspired by 2018 being the 300th anniversary of the birth of world-renowned cabinet maker Thomas Chippendale, who was born in Otley in the summer of 1718.


Competitors will vie for a series of prizes including Overall Winner, Runners Up, Best Dressed Town Crier, Best Dressed Consort and Best Ambassador. Each crier attending will also be presented with an Otley goody bag filled with local souvenirs and memorabilia.
Proceedings will close with an awards presentation and the chance for members of the public to have a go at 'crying' themselves.

Chair of Otley Town Council's trade and tourism committee Cllr Paul Carter said: "Given we have our own multi award-winning town crier, Otley Bellman Terry Ford, we thought it important to help preserve this time-honoured tradition by hosting our own Open Town Crier competition in conjunction with the Loyal Company of Town Criers.

"We look forward to welcoming the Town Criers from around the country to Otley, and hosting a successful event at which members of the public are welcome to join in."


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