King of the criers

FULL CRY: Town Crier Alistair Chisholm

FULL CRY: Town Crier Alistair Chisholm

First published in Dorset Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

HEAR YE! Hear Ye! Dorchester is the proud home of the county’s top crier.

Alistair Chisholm has won this year’s Dorset Town Crier’s Competition.

The battle of booming voices took place in Beaminster at the weekend, hosted by last year’s winner David Craner.

And Alistair’s win means Dorchester will play host to next year’s competition.

The well-known Durnovarian said he is ‘chuffed’ to bring the event to the county town once again.

The second round of the competition saw criers compete with any cry they liked at all.

Alistair chose a number about a lenient judge who was kind to a young gossip because of her beauty, with the moral of the story being that ‘justice should be blind.’ Dorset has 15 town criers, 10 of whom competed in the championship.

David Craner, who could only oversee the competition, said Alistair won the two-round cry off by a ‘clear margin.’ He said: “It’s such an important competition and has been going for around 25 or 26 years.

“Purely and simply, Alistair was the best on the day.

“Alistair has been doing it for so long and he’s so good. He really puts his heart and soul in to it.

“We had three judges and they all agreed Alistair was the best, he won by quite a clear margin.

“Alistair didn’t compete last year. If he had, I doubt I would have won,” he bantered.

He said he is looking forward to coming to Dorchester for next year’s event.

Alistair hopes he may be able to run it alongside one of the town’s annual events, such as the carnival or Christmas Cracker, and asks any organisers interested to contact him.

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