Crying off: leaving longtime role for love

Southland's town crier is leaving for love.

After 21 years calling Invercargill her home, Lynley McKerrow is heading north to the next chapter of her life.

She is coy about the identity of her future husband, but cannot hide her happiness at tying the knot with the "love of her life".

The move to Waikato was to be closer to their families.

"It was one of the hardest decisions I’ve made [leaving Invercargill.]

Southland town crier Lynley McKerrow is moving to Waikato. PHOTO: LUISA GIRAO
Southland town crier Lynley McKerrow is moving to Waikato. PHOTO: LUISA GIRAO

"The best I can say is I have my own romantic love story ... We’ve known each other for 38 years and now we are finally getting married."

Ms McKerrow has been the official town crier for five years, an experience she said she would never forget.

The crier role came about after she spotted a social media post seeking a town crier for a Heritage Month event.

"Some of my friends wrote that I had the loudest, poshest voice in Invercargill."

Her voice echoed and entertained at occasions including citizenship ceremonies, oyster festivals and the Christmas Parade.

"I answered the call — Invercargill and Southland needed colour.

"I have a real passion for Southland and really want people to know about our region — about its beauty, its people — and I’ve always believed if Southland is not good for you, it will be good to you."

Although she was farewelling her position in Southland, she hoped for a similar role in her new hometown.

"I would love to carry on the tradition because we have only four town criers in New Zealand at the moment, and now there will be just one left in the South Island [Central Otago.]

"In 21 years, I've done so many different things with so many different people. Everything I stepped into, I've done my best."

She said despite being happy with her new chapter, she would miss the people and "the green" from Southland.

"I would like to leave Invercargill knowing that I had given some joy and I want to say that I’m very grateful for the people, for the stories ... for everything."


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