|MIDDLEWICH TOWN CRIER DEVLIN HOBSON AND HIS WIFE JENNY Photo: Darren McCubbin|
On the eve of the historic referendum vote when Scotland decides its future* Middlewich has also come to a historic decision and announced that , after a gap of a hundred years, a new official Middlewich Town Crier has been appointed.
Devlin Hobson, who has been making guest appearances at Middlewich events throughout the year, was keen to take up the role, having visited Middlewich and 'fallen in love' with a town which, in recent years, has never missed an opportunity to make the most of its assets and promote itself to the world by exploiting a long and varied history going back to Roman Times and beyond.
The appointment of a Town Crier fits in beautifully with the Town Council's policy of letting everyone know what Middlewich has to offer.
Devlin Hobson attends as many Town Crier competitions as he can and has won quite a few prizes in the relatively short time he has been acting in the role, including First Prize at this year's Nantwich Town Crier Competition (see link below).
He always makes a point (as all Criers do) of singing the praises of the town he's representing.
And from now on, that town will be our town.
Surprisingly there was a certain amount of opposition to the idea of Middlewich having a new Town Crier when the idea was suggested.
Many people were concerned at the cost; in fact our Town Crier will cost us nothing except, presumably, travelling expenses. He supplies his own costume and equipment and writes his own speeches and proclamations.
Others queried the relevance of such an 'old-fashioned' figure in the 21st Century.
This can only be put down to a misunderstanding of the role of a modern-day Town Crier.
Of course we don't 'need' someone to stand in the middle of the town and shout out the latest news; of course we don't 'need' someone to attend local events and make announcements.
Of course we can let people know what's happening by means of Facebook and email (we could even, as someone suggested, pay for some radio advertisements - just think how much that would have cost, with no guarantee, in this multi-media world, of people being tuned to the right station!)
But Devlin's appearances this year, starting at the FAB Festival, have shown us just what a Town Crier can do.
He's a colourful, larger-than-life figure; a symbol of the past bringing us fun and enjoyment in the present, and from a heritage and tourist point of view, he's worth a million dollars to this town.
It's worthwhile noting, too, that the Town Crier is not just available for 'official' Town Council events; he's also ready and willing to come along to local events organised by others.
The Rose Fete committee were quick to latch on to this idea in June. When they heard that Devlin was going to be at the FAB Festival, they invited him to make some announcements for their own event which was held on the Saturday of the festival weekend.
We wish Devlin and Jenny the greatest success and look forward to seeing them on many local occasions in the future.
HEAR YE! HEAR YE! DEVLIN HOBSON, TOWN CRIER (INCLUDES BIOGRAPHY)
DEVLIN HOBSON WINS NANTWICH TOWN CRIER COMPETITION
ONE HUNDRED YEARS ON...
MIDDLEWICH APPOINTS A NEW TOWN CRIER (MIDDLEWICH GUARDIAN REPORT)
MIDDLEWICH TOWN CRIER WINS NATIONAL CONTEST (HASTINGS 2014)
...and you can keep up with Devlin and Jenny's frantic social whirl (if you have the stamina) by going to...
DEVLIN HOBSON ON FACEBOOK
|DEVLIN AT LICHFIELD (Photo: Devlin Hobson)|
First published 18th September 2014
Re-published 20th September 2019