Ancient & Honourable Guild of Town Criers

Representing official town criers the world over *

History of the Guild

The Ancient & Honourable Guild of Town Criers (AHGTC) was founded at Hastings in 1978 when criers met after the British Championships and elected a Committee. One aim was to regularise the organisation of competitions and to define rules for town criers to follow.

In 1999 it was decided that the AHGTC should be formed into a limited company, limited by guarantee, to better protect the members. We hold an Annual General Meeting each year, usually in September.

Today, the AHGTC sanction and oversee numerous town crier competitions across the United Kingdom, including the prestigous annual Guild Championships, which attracts competitors from all over the world to compete for the stunning silver George Carpenter trophy.

Recruit a Town Crier

In order to recruit a town crier for the first time or to replace one who has died or retired, you will need a Job Description, and Application Form and a Trial Cry.

Once you have these documents in place, you will need to advertise the position. Bear in mind that this is not a full-time job nor even a part-time job, but should be considered as a voluntary position. Thus the advertisement should be placed, not in the jobs section, but preferably in the News or Social section.

If you have a local radio station, they too can often be persuaded to publicise the vacancy. As it is a bit unusual, the radio presenters are often happy to give a bit of time and have a laugh at listeners attempts to “have a go”.

The Guild has available some example documents which may be obtained by contacting the Membership Secretary.

Hire a Town Crier

Town criers as we know them today have been making public announcements and proclamations since the 18th century. They make a very distinctive impression on their audience even before they begin talking. Corporations, shops, restaurants, public houses, churches and councils will employ a town crier to add a touch of colour and a momorable impact to their events.

If you are looking to hire a town crier, check with the Town Council in the area. The Town Clerk, Mayor or Chief Executive will know if there is one available.

Otherwise please contact the Guild Secretary, who should be able to put you in touch with a crier in the required vicinity.

We also have a directory of registered Guild town criers by location, available here.

* The Ancient & Honourable Guild of Town Criers (AHGTC) has members in the United Kingdom and parts of Europe. Through affiliations with other town crier Guilds around the world, including Canada, Australia, the United States and other European countries, the AHGTC provides news, competition opportunities and support to town criers around the globe.

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Guild Competitions

Our members run friendly competitions throughout the year. There is no cost to come and watch and to decide for yourself who, on the day, is the best crier. The following competitions are held under Guild rules.

2024

30th March 2024
Alcester

The Heart of England Championship — Hosted by David Parkes

13th April 2024
Warwick

Hosted by Michael Reddy

20th April 2024
Yeovil

Hosted by David Recardo

4th May 2024
Bromyard

Hosted by Peder & Jan Nielsen

6th May 2024
Wimbourne Minster

CANCELLED

11th May 2024
Ilminster

Hosted by Andrew & Julie Fox

26th May 2024
Haslemere

Hosted by Christian Ashdown

1st June 2024
Kingsteignton

Hosted by Jackie Edwards

15th June 2024
Watton

Hosted by Mike Wabe

22nd June 2024
Bognor Regis

Hosted by Jane Smith

29th June 2024
Chard

Hosted by Stuart & Viv Cumming

13th July 2024
Wareham

The South of England Championship — Hosted by Jacquie & Chris Hall

20th July 2024
Calne

Hosted by Mark Wylie

26th July 2024
Plymouth

The Armada Cup Round 1 — Hosted by John Pitt

27th July 2024
Kingsbridge

The Armada Cup Round 2 — Hosted by Roger Pinder

28th July 2024
Dartmouth

The Armada Cup Round 3 — Hosted by Les & Liz Ellis

7th September 2024
Newton Abbot

Hosted by Nigel Kenneison

13th – 15th September 2024
Montgomery

The Guild Championship 2024 — Hosted by Susan Blower

21st September 2024
Royal Wootton Bassett

Hosted by Owen Collier

28th September 2024
Fairford

Hosted by Andrew Stopka

2025

14th June 2025
Bromsgrove

The Guild Championship 2025 — Hosted by Kevin Ward

12th July 2025
Wareham

Hosted by Jacquie & Chris Hall

25th July 2025
Plymouth

The Armada Cup Round 1 — Hosted by John Pitt

26th July 2025
Kingsbridge

The Armada Cup Round 2 — Hosted by Roger Pinder

27th July 2025
Dartmouth

The Armada Cup Round 3 — Hosted by Les & Liz Ellis

6th September 2025
Newton Abbot

Hosted by Nigel Kenneison

4th October 2025
Liskeard

Hosted by Chris & Jennifer Smirthwaite

Other Competitions

Competitions that are not run under AHGTC Rules but may be of interest to criers and visitors alike

11th August 2024
Dawlish

Hosted by Les & Liz Ellis

10th September 2024
Widdercombe

Hosted by Les & Liz Ellis

12th October 2024
Rye

The National Championships — Hosted by Paul Goring

10th November 2024
Hatherleigh

Hosted by Ros Charlton-Chard