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Creating a bit of a ding dong at Calne
Cries of ‘oyez! oyez!’ filled the air as Calne’s town crier contest returned for a third year.
The competition is now a prominent feature on the calendar and this year it turned into a truly international affair.
Calne’s own town crier Mark Wylie, who arranged the contest, said: “It was an absolutely fantastic day. We were very lucky with the weather and we had a good crowd out to watch.
“This was the first time we could really call it an international competition, too, as we had Willy van der Putte, from Gent, in Belgium, along.
“I think we are now getting close to being one of the premier events on the calendar and it is attracting a lot of interest.
“I have to say, it is well supported by people in the town and by the town council. We had lots of councillors out all day, including the mayor, which adds to the wonderful atmosphere.”
Mr van der Putte, Gent’s ‘stadsomroeper’, or town crier, won the Belgian national championship this year and finished third in Sunday’s contest in Calne.
The winner for a third consecutive year was Peder Nielsen, from Bromyard in Herefordshire.
He picked up the new winners’ trophy, named the Two Johns Memorial Trophy, after John Marchant and John Bridges, two of Calne’s former criers.
Mr Wylie, 45, of Studley, who is an IT consultant by day, has been enjoying something of a hot streak at competitions himself this year.
He has won four of his six crier contests, including Saturday’s at Frome.
He said: “It was my second time there and I didn’t trouble the scorers last year, so I was chuffed to win.
“I have been doing quite well and it is nice to have won so many of them.”