Sunday 20 October 2013

In and around Cheshire - Macclesfield

Yesterday I had the pleasure of whiling away an hour in the company of Charles Burnett, Ross Herald Extraordinary, prior to our lunch with other officers and guests of The Cheshire Heraldry Society. Mr. Burnett was to be our speaker later in the afternoon and I had met him off the train at Macclesfield with time enough to spare for a gentle walk around the town. One of the heraldic sites we looked at was the façade of the former Chadwick Free Library with the arms of Chadwick.



The Chadwick Free Library, which since its closure in 1994 has been the town’s Register Office, was built in 1874/6 as a gift from David Chadwick, MP. It was designed by the local architect, James Stevens, and opened on 27 May 1876.

The armorial bearings on the façade are carved extremely well in Petra Sancta and conform to the entry in Burke’s General Armory for the arms of Chadwick, County Lancaster, viz: Gules, an inescutcheon within an orle of martlets Argent, with a crest of A lily Argent, stalked and leaved Vert.


The topic of the talk given by Mr. Burnett was The Heraldic Commemoration of Death which was extremely well received by an appreciative audience.

Saturday 19 October 2013

Vacancy - Lord Lyon King of Arms

Rumour has been rife in heraldic quarters for some weeks now but it is now official: The present Lord Lyon is to retire.

This copied from Scottish Legal News

Office of the Lord Lyon King of Arms

The Office of Lord Lyon King of Arms will fall vacant at the end of December 2013, when Mr David Sellar the current Lord Lyon steps down. The Lord Lyon is appointed by Her Majesty the Queen on the recommendation of the First Minister under section 3 of the Lyon Kings of Arms (Scotland) Act 1867.

The Lord Lyon is the sole King of Arms in Scotland. He is the Head of the Heraldic Executive and the Judge of the Court of the Lord Lyon, which has jurisdiction over all heraldic matters in Scotland.

The office has both judicial and administrative functions. The Lord Lyon is also responsible for State Ceremonial in Scotland.

Applications to fill this Office must be legally qualified. The other skills, knowledge and characteristics expected of the office holder are set out in information for which interested parties should make application. An independent panel will consider the applications and make recommendations to the First Minister.

Those interested in applying for the Office are invited to obtain an application form by contacting Jayne Milligan, Scottish Government, Civil Law and Legal System Division, 2W St Andrews House, Regent Road, Edinburgh, EH1 3DG, telephone 0131 244 3051, or by email at

Completed applications must reach Jayne Milligan at the above address by 31 October 2013.


If you’re interested you don’t have much time to apply … but then those in the know will have had time to put together an application already. I have placed the name of my favourite “horse” in a sealed envelope.

Friday 18 October 2013

A balancing act

There are occasions when I see an achievement of arms and the crest just doesn’t look right and I can’t see how even the most accomplished artist could make it so. An upright sword is one example … it just looks too tall and thin to have any real substance. Another example is the head of an animal when it is caboshed; animal heads look fine on a crest wreath or on a coronet when they are couped or erased but they rarely appear satisfactory when caboshed as they have to either precariously balance upon a wreath or, if they are out of a coronet, float slightly above it or sit low down within it. As a charge upon a shield a caboshed head presents no problem but it beats me why anyone would choose to have one as a crest when the poor wee beastie could at least have a neck!


Friday 4 October 2013

Books One, CDs Nil !

A friend of mine, who to save embarrassment shall remain nameless, has just replied to my notification that I have recently published facsimile copies of The Visitations of Shropshire by sending  me the following message:

“Good luck with the Visitations of Shropshire. Some time ago I purchased Vols1 & 2 on a CD, so don't need it. //snip// I was surprised not to find a reference in the 1623 Visitation to the Clives of Styche as they were there from the time of Henry II. Any thoughts?”

My reply:

“I find it much easier to find my way around a book (you can't take a CD to bed with you for bed time reading) and perhaps that is why you failed to find the Clives of Styche. It is all down to spelling. See page 121 (volume 1): Clyve (with a Y) of Walford and Styche co. Salop, and Huxley co Chester. You will see that there are four and a bit pages of information and pedigree.
It is precisely because I find a book far more convenient for research that I have produced the facsimiles. Much easier to reach over to the book shelf and open up a book than have to wait for a CD to load and then find and load another if I need to make a cross reference.”

The Heraldic Visitations of Shropshire Volume 1
One Nil to the Books I think ;-)

College of Arms Newsletter April 2024

 The latest College of Arms Newsletter for April 2024 is now online .

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