Looking back: Oyez, oyez – two criers in Sussex family!

The Argus: Looking back: Oyez, oyez – two criers in Sussex family! Looking back: Oyez, oyez – two criers in Sussex family!

Hear ye, hear ye. With their red and gold robe, white breeches, shiny buckled shoes and feather adorned tricorn hats, town criers are hard to miss.

Back in August 1988, Worthing towncrier Phillip Holliday welcomed a bouncing baby boy into the world.

Wife Jan seriously needed to consider a set of earplugs as she had two criers to contend with.


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Phillip, whose booming voice landed him the job of town crier back in 1980, said: “He seems to have a good set of lungs on him so I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he followed in my footsteps.

“When David was allowed home I just wanted to shout ‘Oyez, Oyez, Oyez’ and let everyone know the good news.”

Fast forward a couple of years to December 1990 and Phillip was being presented with his annual payment of a bottle of port and a wedge of stilton.

He was presented these by an audience of Russians who were visiting Worthing on an exchange trip organised by the then Soviet and British governments.

When the Russians finally grasped what a town crier was, Phillip was asked to give them one of his best renditions and they certainly were not disappointed.

Town criers were introduced in Worthing in 1803 and Phillip was the fourth crier since the tradition began.

But he is not the only town crier who has made the news.

Hastings town crier Ray Goode made headlines when he was presented with a unique picture to put up on his wall.

Delighted Ray was given a pub sign, featuring himself of course.

It was presented to him after The Town Crier pub in Queens Road, Hastings, changed its name to Pitchers Sports bar and diner.

Back in February 2000, Littlehampton Town Council contacted the paper to place an advert for a new crier.

The advert stated the council was looking for a town crier to “bellow out the resort’s merits”.

But the council only received two applications, both of whomproved unsuitable for the job.

Officials set aside a hefty £1,000 to pay for the traditional uniform in the hope that it would generate a new band of recruits.

Deputy Mayor at the time Tony Squires said: “It doesn’t matter whether they are male or female. We are looking for somebody with civic pride who wants the town to prosper and who is a bit of a character.”

“We have never had a town crier as such before. I think it all adds to the town’s civic pride.”

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