Friday, May 25, 2018

The Duchess of Sussex gets her own coat of arms

Buckingham Palace announced today that the HRH The Duchess of Sussex has been given her own Coat of Arms. 

"A Coat of Arms has been created for The Duchess of Sussex. The design of the Arms was agreed and approved by Her Majesty The Queen and Mr. Thomas Woodcock (Garter King of Arms and Senior Herald in England), who is based at the College of Arms in London.

Her Royal Highness worked closely with the College of Arms throughout the design process to create a Coat of Arms that was both personal and representative.

The blue background of the shield represents the Pacific Ocean off the California coast, while the two golden rays across the shield are symbolic of the sunshine of The Duchess's home state. The three quills represent communication and the power of words.

Beneath the shield on the grass sits a collection of golden poppies, California's state flower, and wintersweet, which grows at Kensington Palace.
It is customary for Supporters of the shield to be assigned to Members of the Royal Family, and for wives of Members of the Royal Family to have one of their husband’s Supporters and one relating to themselves. The Supporter relating to The Duchess of Sussex is a songbird with wings elevated as if flying and an open beak, which with the quill represents the power of communication.

A Coronet has also been assigned to The Duchess of Sussex. It is the Coronet laid down by a Royal Warrant of 1917 for the sons and daughters of the Heir Apparent. It is composed of two crosses patée, four fleurs-de-lys and two strawberry leaves.

The arms of a married woman are shown with those of her husband and the technical term is that they are impaled, meaning placed side by side in the same shield.

Mr. Thomas Woodcock, Garter King of Arms said: "The Duchess of Sussex took a great interest in the design. Good heraldic design is nearly always simple and the Arms of The Duchess of Sussex stand well beside the historic beauty of the quartered British Royal Arms. Heraldry as a means of identification has flourished in Europe for almost nine hundred years and is associated with both individual people and great corporate bodies such as Cities, Universities and for instance the Livery Companies in the City of London. "

The Duchess of Sussex's monogram was also used for the first time today.

Thursday, May 24, 2018


May 15, 2018.  I visited Sandringham for the first time in more than 20 years.

Train to King's Lynn, then a bus to Sandringham. 

a few minutes of sightseeing in King's Lynn before catching bus to Sandringham

War memorial at Sandringham

Prince Alexander and Prince Maurice of Battenberg are named on the memorial.  Prince Maurice was killed in action.

Sandringham is privately owned.  No photos inside the house

HM the Queen is not at home

photos can be taken in the museum, which includes historic cars, toys. etc

Heading toward the stream path.

York Cottage.  This was the home of the future King George V and Queen Mary.  It now houses the Sandringham estate office.  It is on the other side of the stream.  Unlikely to become the country home of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.  No privacy.

Graves of three of the queen's corgis

St Mary Magdalene Church, Sandringham

The grave of Prince John, youngest son of King George V

the grave of Prince Alexander John, youngest son of King Edward VII, who lived for less than a day

Shop in Notting Hill

Twitter girls Night out at the Prince Albert pub in Notting Hill: Susan, Jamie, Sarah and myself

strange image on subway

oh look  Shake Shack in Leicester Square

a few doors down from Shake Shack in Leicester Square

Piccadilly Circus

View from the other side of Westminster Bridge

Big Ben being repaired.