Cheshire Heraldry Web Journal (Blog)

A journal of the activities of an Amateur Armorist.

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Cheshire Heraldry Society A.G.M.

April 21st, 2017 · No Comments

Tomorrow is the Annual General Meeting of The Cheshire Heraldry Society and once again I shall be travelling to Macclesfield via my town of birth, Leek. Every time I make this journey I pass a very pleasant building, Les Hetres, 60 St Edward Street, (built in 1883 by William Sugden (1821-1892) & William Larner Sugden (1850-1901)). The house, said to have been built by a member of the Sleigh family, has a splendid Sleigh coat of arms on the front.

Arms: Gules, a chevron between three owls Argent beaked and membered Or.

Crest: A demi-lion rampant Argent holding a cross-crosslet fitchee Or ducally crowned Gold.

Motto: Sapere Aude (Dare to Know).

Just up the road, at the top of St.Edward’s Street, as you would expect, is St.Edward’s Church where, in the increasingly dim and distant past, I was Christened. In the church can be seen the Royal Arms.

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow at the A.G.M. If time permits I shall give a brief talk on Cheshire’s Feudal Government – A brief look at the heraldry of the Court of Hugh Lupus and other ecclesiastical heraldry of Cheshire.


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Thomas Henry Noel-Hill

March 22nd, 2017 · Comments Off on Thomas Henry Noel-Hill

Some time ago I was privileged to be able to view a manuscript/book housed in the Shrewsbury museum (I call it the Cole Manuscript) and here is but one of the many photographs I took. Cole & Sons were heraldic painters/stationers based in Shrewsbury during the 19th and early 20th centuries and this is the bookplate of  Richard Henry Noel-Hill, 7th Baron Berwick, being used by his nephew, Thomas Henry Noel-Hill, who succeeded to the title as the 8th Baron in  1897, as a template to convey instructions for a newly commissioned bookplate.

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Cheshire Heraldry Society – March meeting

March 14th, 2017 · Comments Off on Cheshire Heraldry Society – March meeting

Saturday sees the March meeting of The Cheshire Heraldry Society at Macclesfield. March 18th 2017. This month’s talk is * The Armorial Sword Rests of the City of London – John J. Tunesi of Liongam, MSc, FSA Scot.
* Meetings presented in conjunction with The Heraldry Society.

Details of all of our meetings along with directions on how to get to them can be found here:

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Lesson for the day.

February 20th, 2017 · Comments Off on Lesson for the day.

Lesson for the day – the bordure.
I am coming across an increasing number of ” amateur heralds” who, whilst having competent digital/drawing/painting skills appear to be quite ignorant of blazon and, for that matter, the science upon which heraldry is founded; many of them appear to have their own idea of what a coat of arms is but don’t appear to have ever read a heraldry book.

I don’t wish to come over as too critical of these newly minted heralds, we all have to start somewhere, but I do wish that some basic research could be done first before offering to design arms for all and sundry. Many here would be delighted to advise but it isn’t difficult to do some basic research and many heraldry books are available free to download.

Perhaps here I should disclose the basis for my “rant”. Not for the first time have I been approached, with a request to supply a blazon, by someone who has had a coat of arms designed for them without its necessary heraldic description. Sometimes, the “arms” are completely inappropriate and on many occasions not even particularly heraldic. The latest conversation with such an armiger revolved around the decorative border around the shield applied, by the artist/designer. When I failed to mention it in the blazon, the new armiger asked why I had omitted it, at first believing that I must have overlooked it!

It took quite some time to convince Mr. new armiger that In heraldry, a bordure is a band of contrasting tincture forming a border around the edge of a shield, traditionally one-sixth as wide as the shield itself. It is sometimes reckoned as an ordinary and sometimes as a subordinary. There are no diminutives of a bordure and so the narrow line around the shield that had been depicted on his arms is nothing more than artistic embellishment and therefore can not be a part of the blazon.

He sent me an image (I regret that I can’t acknowledge its source) which simply reinforced my view. The narrow borders around these shields are simply artistic embellishment and not a part of the blazon. He has been mislead into believing that the wee border is to be a permanent and inheritable part of his arms despite the fact that heraldry is a science and fimbriations to a shield are meaningless.


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2017/18 speakers for Cheshire Heraldry Society

February 16th, 2017 · Comments Off on 2017/18 speakers for Cheshire Heraldry Society

I have just uploaded the speakers list for the 2017/18 season:

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Cheshire Heraldry Society Christmas Lunch

December 9th, 2016 · Comments Off on Cheshire Heraldry Society Christmas Lunch

I’ve had quite an heraldic week this week with Sunday in Cheltenham, Monday in Bath and Wednesday at Prestbury for the Cheshire Heraldry Society Christmas Lunch at the Bridge Inn. I took a few photographs while I was in each location and posted them in their own Google galleries.



Here are some photos taken pre-lunch at Prestbury’s St.Peter’s Church:

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Romilly Squire

December 8th, 2016 · Comments Off on Romilly Squire

At oo:15 on the morning of Wednesday 7th December my very dear friend Romilly Squire “of Rubislaw” departed this earth.

I have known Romilly for a great may years have enjoyed his hospitality almost every time I’ve had the pleasure of visiting Edinburgh; he was always hospitable, entertaining and, especially in our many discussions on heraldry, most knowledgeable and well informed. His humour was finely tuned and always used to the very best effect resulting in his company being second to none.

A founder member, Fellow and former Chairman of the Heraldry Society of Scotland, he was a very well known and respected heraldist with close links to the Court of the Lord Lyon both as a former heraldic artist to the Court and latterly with a special licence to appear before the Court and submit petitions on behalf of his clients (something which was unique to him). He had great pleasure in serving as Secretary to the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs for over 25 years, a position which allowed him to provide advice to many of Scotland’s families and clans. He was also co-author of the “Scottish Clan and Family Encyclopedia”.

Romilly, you will be greatly missed.


PS … he also loved dressing up!

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Arms of France-Hayhurst

October 27th, 2016 · Comments Off on Arms of France-Hayhurst

France-Hayhurst of Bostock Hall


This wonderful image of the France-Hayhurst arms can be found on the Twitter page of the Hayhurst Arms village pub which describes itself as “A classic village pub which sits in the heart of Bostock where you’ll find log fires burning, a well stocked bar and a fantastic menu.”

Quarterly, 1st & 4th Hayhurst, Per chevron Sable and Or in chief two crosses pattee fitchee and in base a pair of wings conjoined and elevated counterchanged; 2nd & 3rd, France, Argent on a mount in base a hurst Proper, on a chief wavy Azure three fleurs-de-lis Or.

Crests – 1st Hayhurst, A cubit arm proper holding in the hand a cross pattee fitchee Or between two wings sable each charged with an annulet Gold; 2nd France, A mount thereon a hurst as in the arms from the centre tree pendant by a strap Azure a shield Gules charged with a fleur-de-lis Or.

Motto: Virtus Semper Viridis

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Cheshire Heraldry Society Talk

October 12th, 2016 · Comments Off on Cheshire Heraldry Society Talk

We look forward to welcoming Vic Taylor this Saturday who will be giving a talk to the Cheshire Heraldry Society on the topic of : Herald Townley and a Draft for his Coat of Arms.

Rather appropriate since we meet at Townley Street. Full details of this and all our talks can be found here:

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Cheshire Heraldry

June 28th, 2016 · Comments Off on Cheshire Heraldry

I have just turned down a very polite request to licence the name “Cheshire Heraldry” for commercial use by someone who thought it would be a good idea to start a small heraldry/surname franchise (a bucket shop) in Cheshire. The very polite initial enquiry asked if I would mind if he traded as Cheshire Heraldry!

Of Course I mind.  In its own small way, Cheshire Heraldry has, over an increasing number of years, become a brand in its own right and I have absolutely no intention of having that brand associated with the questionable activities of any heraldry bucket shop. I persuaded the would be business man that he would be most unwise to risk his investment funds by using the name Cheshire Heraldry as I would certainly sue under the common law tort of passing off; I have traded and published under that name for over 17 years. Whether I also succeeded in persuading him that he would have a clearer conscience if he embarked on a more ethical business venture remains to be seen.

While I was “talking” to my friend the would be business man I decided that, as a further protection to the name, I would incorporate Cheshire Heraldry as a Limited Company. I shall continue, for the moment at least, to declare the income I receive from Cheshire Heraldry as a sole trader and I shall use the limited company in its dormant state to hold any other intellectual property I might consider in the future.


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