Businesses group together to revive traditional role of town crier

A GROUP of businesses have voted to revive the role of town crier to promote their town – and they think the current mayor is the ideal candidate.

Worthing Town Centre Initiative have confirmed Worthing mayor Bob Smytherman will become the first town crier the town has had since the early 1990s.

Town centre manager Sharon Clarke said reviving the role would provide an alternative way of promoting the town.

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She said: “Bob has done such a good job as mayor and we want to continue to harness that enthusiasm.

“So many people say they don’t know what is happening in the town but when Bob’s ringing his bell they wouldn’t be able to say that.

“It is another route to market.”

The decision to install Mr Smytherman as town crier was taken last Wednesday at the TCI’s monthly board meeting.

The role will be voluntary, with the businesses funding the cost of a bell and traditional outfit.

He will start work when he finishes his mayoral year in June.

Mrs Clarke said: “Bob said he was playing the role of town crier in the community play and was so enthralled with the role he got talking to us.

“All of the businesses felt it was a great idea to promote the town.”

Mr Smytherman said he was delighted to accept the role and that it would act as an extension to his mayoral promise of ‘putting Worthing on the map.’

He said: “The nearest town crier is in Arundel and Worthing deserves to have its own.

“It’s great that the TCI have given me a chance to do it and people come from all over to see the Arundel town crier, so I want to continue to put Worthing on the map.”