Arundel’s celebrated Town Crier, Angela Standing, was a prize winner at The Ancient & Honourable Guild of Town Criers (AHGTC) Championship held in Bognor Regis last weekend.
Competing against Town Criers from all over England and one international visitor from Canada, Angela scooped up third prize, as awards were given based on diction, inflection, clarity, accuracy and volume.
The Ancient and Honourable Guild has existed since 1978, but Town Criers (or Bellmen) have been in existence for over 1,000 years-in fact two are depicted on the Bayeux Tapestry. In centuries when few people were literate, it was the job of the Town Crier to let townspeople know the latest news, announce new laws and share other information.
The Ancient and Honourable Guild represents official Town Criers all over the world who come together to compete in friendly competitions and strive to help each other reach the highest possible standard.
Angela, renowned for the loudness of her cry, has been Arundel’s Town Crier for the past 18 years, and most recently proclaimed the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee in the High Street on Thursday 2nd June as part of Arundel’s Thanksgiving Service.
“In a historic town like Arundel it’s a great honour to be maintaining this tradition. Our first Town Crier was heard as early as 369 AD. And in earlier times, Town Criers were also able to put miscreants in the stocks in Arundel, and that’s another tradition that I would sometimes like to revive!” she comments.