March 28, 2012

Official town crier appointed

As published in The Erin Advocate

Hear Yea, Here Yea! The Town of Erin now has an official town crier.

Andrew Welch was appointed by council on March 20. The tradition of criers goes back to medieval times when there were no newspapers and many people could not read. Criers were hired by royal courts or towns to make proclamations and be a reliable source of news.

There's no salary for the position or any cost to the town. He will be available to be hired by local groups to add a dramatic touch to various events, though his services may be offered free for charities. He appeared at the recent Upside Down Sale put on by the Business Improvement Area, and the St. Patrick's Day gathering at McMillan Park.

He will occupy the position until the end of the current term of council in 2014. Last September the Alton resident was appointed Town Crier for Caledon for the same term.

At the council meeting he added some pageantry for the good-will tour visit of Wellington County Warden Chris White and senior staff. He whipped up a poetic proclamation on short notice, which included this description of his duties:

"A crier is a photo-friendly way
to greet folks from far and near.
A splendid way the Town can say
we have both fun and history here.
A simple thing to add some zing to fairs and such,
to lead parades or open things,
a crier adds that special touch.
Town criers give a welcome face
to all that makes a town unique.
They gather crowds, create the space,
and introduce the folks who speak."

Welch is a member of the Criers Guild and was featured in the last summer's edition of Sideroads Magazine for Caledon and Erin.

He has broad experience as a performer, including various films and TV series, radio projects, live theatre, audio books and motivational/educational speaking engagements. He is also a software developer. For more information, go to

Photo (L-R): Mayor Lou Maieron, Warden Chris White, Welch