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The lady town cryer

December 8, 2013

The ancient tradition of having a Town Cryer, a medieval way to make announcements, is alive and well in Arundel, except for one thing; Arundel has a female town cryer. I came across her yesterday during the warm up for “Arundel By Candlelight ” which got under way at lunchtime yesterday. Now I am a bit of a traditionalist at heart, and although she looks the part in her outfit, and she uses her bells well, it is it not the voice that us a crucial here? In my opinion It needs balls rather than bells. If you want to announce stuff in the traditional way, you need a deep baritone, not something that is reedy and shrill. She is a lovely lady but it is just wrong.

town cryer

The lady town cryer of Arundel

After a brief, but still too long for me, stint of retail therapy at the Christmas market, we eventually gave in to the temptation to have a festive Christmas drink at about 3pm. First up was the Kings Arms where Charlie Pistorius Malcolmson, the landlord, and co-founder of the No Parsley Club, was outside in a short sleeves shirt serving mulled wine. It was about 7 degrees but he did not seem to feel the cold. Inside, he was launching his own real ale called Chazza Metazza on the inside. I stuck to London Pride in the warm interior.

The lights were switched on by the Duchess of Norfolk and so we had adjourned to the Red Lion which looks out on where the tree is located, in order to witness the event but in the hubris of beer, we missed it. Literally thousands of people had flocked to the town for the event, with the High Street closed and parking free from 1pm, it seemed that most of the inhabitants of Sussex were there.

This in a strange way was anti climactic. I don’t know what I expected, perhaps it is a victim of its own success, but everyone said it was such a good event last year, but with the town packed, with rather too many snotty nosed kids in pushchairs clutching luminous toys, waiting to sit on the knee of  a corpulent man dressed in a red suit and with a shiny nose, who is heading for the sex offenders register, it was hard to find people we knew. We did see the flame haired siren, the beautiful Carolyn, at her retro clothing stall, where I was able to brighten her day by showing her a copy of yesterday’s column. For some reason she was not best pleased. I just a don’t understand it.

An old cigar smoking chum from Buckinghamshire will be in Arundel this lunchtime, doubtless intent on denuding my sticks of Monte Christo’s finest, Simon Barrett will be accompanied by the gorgeous Debbie, who is now in a senior position at broadcaster BFBS, who is as much his carer as his wife. Never one for an active life, I wonder if he will arrive in a bath chair? Their arrival will signal that it is time for a drink and I believe the Kings Arms will be the lucky recipient of our largesse, at least to start with. I shall be talking to him about why he has not yet become a customer of Currencies Direct. His probable defence, that he has no need of a foreign exchange service, even if it is the best one around, will not be accepted.  It is plainly common sense to be prepared for any eventuality, so I shall have the forms to hand so that he will be ready.

Chris France

4 Comments leave one →
  1. howzaaat permalink
    December 8, 2013 12:20 pm

    “Be Prepared” is a creed that sounds geeky.
    It is cooler these days to be sneaky !
    To a Boy Scout, his word
    Must be honoured. “Absurd !”
    Sneer his peers. “Such high morals are freaky !”


  2. Rev. Jeff. permalink
    December 8, 2013 12:53 pm

    Was it really a Town Cryer..ess
    And not just a chap in a dress ?
    I know it’s absurd,
    But was Santa a bird ?
    It’s P.C.gone mad is my guess !!


  3. Rev. Jeff. permalink
    December 8, 2013 1:31 pm

    Santa said “Now little boy,
    Hop aboard if you want a nice toy,
    You’re a cute little chap,
    Wriggle round on my lap,
    Being Santa Claus brings me such joy” !!


  4. December 8, 2013 6:14 pm



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