Shooting Competition

Barnard Castle Life - Picture of the Market Cross taken from down the bank

The story has it that during the Napoleonic wars an invasion by Napoleon (who else?) was feared at the coast so the Teesdale Legion of Volunteers was garrisoned in the town.

Sometime during 1803 an argument between a volunteer soldier (a man from the town called Taylor, and a gamekeeper called Cruddas who worked for the earl of Strathmore at Streatlam Castle) broke out over who was the better shot.

The men took their guns and made a bet to find out who was the better and the innocent weather vane on top of the market cross was chosen as the target.

Barnard Castle Life - picture of the weathervane showing 2 holes as a result of a shooting competition

Standing outside the Turks Head Inn (my guess was the argument and the bet all started inside the Turks Head Inn) both men took turns to fire off a shot, if you look at the picture I think you can safely say each man was as good as the other.