I have always had a great interest in history, which I believe was inspired by having been brought up in Newbury, Berkshire which featured significant battle sites from the English Civil wars. At school we would frequently find musket balls on the school I attended playing fields and in later life I became an active member of the Sealed Knot society and The English Civil War Society, two charities which research and recreate history and battle re-enactments. I have always enjoyed dressing up and doing loud things so the role of a Town Crier was not entirely alien to me when I relocated to Wimborne, Dorset in 1997.
I was inspired to have a go at becoming a Town Crier after watching the former World Champion Mike Andrews who was the Crier of Wimborne and volunteered myself to the Town Council to become his deputy in 1998. The Council appointed me Town Mayor’s Serjant to give me a role in the civic life of the town and to deputise for Mike. I was elevated to Town Crier when Mike moved to become Crier for Ferndown.
There are many reasons why I love being a Town crier, it is an incredible honour to represent one’s town and attend civic functions meeting a huge cross section of interesting and diverse people. I am a member of the Ancient and Honourable Guild of Town Criers and the Loyal Company of Town Criers who organise competitions in UK and further afield. I have been honoured by winning the Dorset County Championship Title three times and the Guild Champion in 2007. I am eternally grateful for the friendship and support amongst the Town Criers and when we get together at events, we bring our respective communities that much closer together.
I also love traditions and folk lore and am keen to see what we have survive and those things we used to enjoy, but are long gone, re-kindled for future generations. Plus, if I can bring a smile to another’s face then my efforts are rewarded.
In my role as Town mayor’s Serjant I hold a formal commission to raise the Town’s Militia based upon the 1685 early Dorset Regiment, “The Duke of Beaufort’s Musketeers”. We are almost uniqe being one of only two towns in England that has a formal standing Militia who can be seen at Civic and charitable events in Wimborne and further afield to promote interest in the Dorset & Somerset (Monmouth) Rebellion.
May God continue to Bless Dorset and God Save The Queen!