Norrie Ships Crests
Explanation of crests
Ulster - R83/ D83/ F83 -
One of the four provinces of Ireland, comprising nine counties. The red
hand of Ulster. Affiliation: County Down, Northern Ireland. Only 2 ships
have had this name. Sealed Pattern done for 2nd ship, Destroyer
(R83/D83/F83), 'U' class; Converted to Frigate 1954-6; Sold 4 Aug 1980,
Broken Up at Inverkeithing, Scotland.
The early legend of the cutting off of the
left hand, and throwing it ashore does not seem to be
historically accurate, for the same story appears in many
places, and is not borne out by the fact that the O'Neill's,
Kings of Ulster, and all branches of that princely house
invariably used the right hand as do the present
representatives. All the early seals of the O'Neills have
the right hand - never the left. The reason of the confusion
as to right or left hand appears to have arisen in this way:
On the institution of the Order of Baronets of Ulster by King James
I 'a hand gules' was adopted as the badge of the new Order
(right or left not specified). A dexter or a sinister hand
was used indiscriminately by the
baronets for some time, but
gradually settled down exclusively to the sinister hand -
the ancient legend apparently carrying the day as regards
the badge of the baronetcy.
As the badge of the province, however, the
dexter is the right hand and is by authority so recorded in
Ulster's Office. Therefore the badge of the province - 'The
Red Hand of O'Neill' - argent a dexter hand gules - is
authoritatively settled beyond dispute. "There should be no
Whatever you believe:
Red Hand of Ulster's a paradox quite,
To Baronets 'tis said to belong;
If they use the left hand, they're sure to be
And to use the right hand would be wrong.
For the Province, a different custom applies,
And just the reverse is the rule;
If you use the right hand you'll be right,
safe and wise,
If you use the left hand you're a fool."
Vigilant - A prize name
of 1745. Watchful or awake. Dragon symbolizes this as they are said not
to close their eyes, even when sleeping. 15 ships have had this name,
counting the 1st ship that had an 'E' at the end of the name. Badge
designed for 13th ship, Destroyer. 14th ship, Patrol boat, was renamed
Meavy in Jul 1986. Badge then passed to 15th ship, Nuclear Submarine,
'Vanguard' class, originally referred to by some sources as Venerable.
Heraldic description: On
a Field Blue, a dragon couchant gardant Gold.
HMS Loch Killisport
Loch Killisport - K628/F628 -
A sea loch in Mull of Kintyre, Argyllshire, also known as Loch Caolisport (harbour on the sound). Only 1 ship has had this name,
Frigate, 'Loch' class; Sold 20 Feb 1970, BU at Blyth.
The Crown for the Ensign
Staff made by Japanese Prisoners of War at Johore, Malaya in 1946 was of
particularly unique design. Every piece was individually made for ease
of dismantling. It is reputed to be the only Crown for a British warship
to have been made by an enemy.
commissioning, Loch and Bay class vessels were classified as twin screw
corvettes, as such (per AFO 3809 of 6 Aug 1942) were not entitled to
official badges. In late 40's designation was changed to Frigate which
brought them into official badge status. During intervening period the
majority of these vessels had designed and displayed unofficial badges,
ships were asked to submit copies of these c1940 for assessment.
Killisport was the only vessel to win approval for a badge she had worn
notates design was ship's suggestion with derivation 'Legend of the Loch
Killisport Stallion' - a legend which does not exist.
The badge design is part
Arms of Campbell of Auchinbreck. Ship's first C.O. was Lt.Cdr. Walter
John Rankine Campbell of this family, who decided to revert to a
pre-1918 practice and placed crest from his own Arms upon ship's bridge
screen. Only 1 ship has had this name, Frigate, 'Loch' class.
This is Daring 1931
and 1952 (Shield) but Daring 2001 was drawn in a circle.
Explanation - Gaius
Mutuis Scaevola when take prisoner by Tarqun's forces during the siege
of Rome, thrust his hand into a fire to show that the Roman spirit could
not be broken.
Motto - Splendide Audax - Finely Daring
Note - Scaevola means Left Handed.
The very first Daring was a 12-gun brig, built at Ipswich and launched
in October 1804. It ran aground off Sierra Leone in 1813 and was
scuttled by her own crew to avoid capture by the French.
The next Daring was
built at Portsmouth and launched in April 1844. This was again a 12-gun
brig and served on the North America and West Indies Stations during its
The third reincarnation
was a 4-gun sloop built at Blackwall and launched in February 1874. This
vessel served on the Pacific and China Stations before being sold to a
Mr. J Cohen in 1889.
The fourth ship to bear
the name of Daring was a Torpedo Boat Destroyer which was built at
Chiswick and launched in November 1893. This ship was eventually sold
for £6,000 in 1912.
Following that, Daring
became a Destroyer of 1,375 tons which was built by Thorneycroft at
Southampton and launched in 1932. Sadly, this vessel was sunk by a
U-Boat whilst escorting a convoy from Norway to the UK. Nine officers
and 148 ratings lost their lives.
vessel to bear the name Daring was a Destroyer of 2,800 tons which was
built by Swan Hunter and launched in August 1949. This was sold for
breaking in 1971.
The seventh was
Naval Ships - Type 45
Destroyer, a guided missile destroyer, displacing 8,000 tons, Length
152.4 m(500 feet) Beam 21,2 m (69.7 feet),
commissioned in 2009.
BLAZON: Blue; within a
circle of chain conjoined and extended in base gold a
More majorem: After the manner of your ancestors
Sir Robert Blake (1599-1657), one of Cromwell's
"Generals-At-Sea", was awarded a gold chain for his
victories at sea in 1653. The martlet is from
his Arms. Parliament presented him with the gold chain
for his distinguished services against the Dutch in 1663. Motto was
added, by ship's suggestion, in 1959. 6 ships have had this name. SP
done for 6th Ship, Cruiser, (Ex-Tiger renamed Feb 1945); (ex-Blake
renamed Dec 1944); Suspended 1946-54; Completed 18 Mar 1961; Sold 25 Aug
1982; BU Cairnryan.
Rhyl: A North Wales
seaside resort and mediaeval anchorage. The parish church is
dedicated to the Holy Trinity.
Blue; three anchors conjoined in the centre gold.
Explanation - Anchor
alludes to Rhyl at the mouth of the River Clwyd being and important
anchorage in Middle Ages. Arrangement of anchors reflect that the Parish
Church is dedicated to the Holy Trinity.
Zulu - F18; F124 - A
warrior tribe of South Africa. Affiliation: Ruislip, Middlesex. 3 ships
have had this name.
BLAZON:On a Field Barry, wavy of six white and blue; in front of two Zulu
spears in saltire surmounted a a Zulu shield all proper.
SP done for
2nd ship, Fleet Destroyer (F18), 'Tribal' class; 14 Sep 1942 - Took HMS
Sikh in tow after she had been seriously damaged by shore fire. HMS Sikh
sank during towing operation. Under heavy air attacks during which HMS
Coventry was set on fire and had to be abandoned. Sank HMS Coventry. Air
attacks continued and ship was disabled after sustaining major damage.
Taken in tow by HM Escort Destroyer Hursley sank during passage to
Alexandria in position 32.00N 28.56E. Twelve members of the ship’s
company were killed, 24 Missing and one injured.
Badge updated and motto
added for 3rd ship, Iva Kaligobi Swaili (The thorn bends not) Frigate (F124), Type 81 'Tribal' class; Sold
Indonesia 1984 and renamed Martha Krystina Tiyahahu; Deleted 2000.
HMS St Vincent
From the Arms of Admiral
Jervis, ennobled after the battle off Cape St Vincent in 1797
Red: a demi-horse rampant silver crined and hoofed gold winged
blue charged on the wing with fleur-de-lys gold
Name given to the Royal Navy Training Centre at Gosport,
Hampshire (1927-1968) then the ship name for the Royal Naval
personnel based in London from 1988.
Thus (From the old steering order; "Keep her thus")
version had a lighter colour blue in addition to having gold
name on black background
The Fish Hawk
Blue: a fish hawk (Pandion Haliatus) volant gold in his talons a
Name given to the Royal Naval Air Station at Portland, Dorset,
The date of change of
badge colour is not recorded.
Ne exeat: Don't let him go.
Osprey & RNAS Portland, Dorset (1924 - 1999) 5 ships have
had this name.
was an anti-submarine training establishment established at
Portland between 1924 and 1941, when its functions were
transferred to Dunoon. HMS Osprey was at Dunoon until 1946,
the name also being allocated to a smaller base established
at Belfast in 1943. Osprey recommissioned at Portland in
1946, became a base in 1948 and was closed in 1995. The
helicopter station closed in 1999. To date I have been
unable to establish when it ceased to be an ASDIC school,
but would be somewhere between 1959-1962.
at one point was HMS Boscawen - Commemorates Admiral Edward
Boscawen (1711 - 1761). Falcon and rose are from his Arms.
artist of the crests had completed his upgrading, someone
pointed out that he had missed out a few Royal Naval Air
Stations (RNAS) See notes at bottom
on ships badges
From the Arms assumed
by Sir Francis Drake (1540-1596)
Blue; on a plate
a wyvern passant red armed and langued blue.
Name given to Devonport Barracks, Plymouth from 1934
Sic parvis magna:
Thus great things arise from small.
flash against a dark sky.
White; a roundel per
fesse wavy black and barry wavy of six white and blue
charged with four bolts of lighting white.
name of Commander-in-Chief Plymouth's yacht until 1895. From
1914 the name of Devonport Barracks, Plymouth, until 1934
when it became HMS Drake.
RNB's name was changed
in 1974 to HMS Nelson. This mostly due to HMS Victory still
being in commission and to avoid confusion.
The design and the
motto from the Arms of Vice Admiral Viscount Nelson, KB
White; a lion rampant
regardant holding in his dexter paw a palm branch embowed
Name given to Royal Naval Barracks Portsmouth in 1974.
Palmam qui meruit
ferat: Let him bear the palm who has deserved it.
Weapon and Diving School
From the Arms and motto
of Admiral Vernon (1684-1757)
Blue; in base water
barry wavy of three white sinister a dexter arm embowed and
vambraced proper grasping in the gauntlet bendwise sinister
a trident downwards gold.
was the torpedo school established in 1876. She remained in
commission until 1996, using a number of different hulked
ships as her home until she moved ashore in 1923. The TAS
School closed in 1985.
Vernon semper viret
Vernon always succeeds
The horse is from the
Arms of Admiral Thomas Cochrane (1775-1860). He founded and
served in the navies of Chile, Brazil and Greece (three
Barry wavy of six blue
and white; in front of three anchors one erect and two in
saltire gold a torteau charged with a horse passant white.
Name given to the naval base at Rosyth (1938-1996).
First at Donibristle, then moved to Girdleness and Duncansby
Head ( ships) and finally to the barracks located just
outside Rosyth dockyard
The ancient name for
Scotland north of the Forth/Clyde line.
Blue; a thistle slipped
and leaved gold debruised by a St Andrew's Cross white.
Artificer's Training ship at Rosyth (1937-1939) was the
ex-liner Majestic (56,000 tons). The shore establishment
paid of in 1985 but the site retained. In 1996, Caledonia
was recommissioned as a "stone frigate in a refit support
role for Rosyth Dockyard.
In Roman mythology, God
of the Sea, brother of Jupiter and Pluto. (analogous, but
not identical to, the Greek God, Poseidon.)
Green; a trident gold.
Chatham Reserve Fleet (1950-1960). Submarine Base, Clyde,
Scotland, from 1967.
servire: To rule is to serve.
Sir George Rooke took
Gibraltar in 1704 and gained the key to the Mediterranean.
Gold; a chess rook
Name given to the Boom Defence Depot at Rosyth (1940-1946),
then to Gibraltar (1946-1996). In addition also name of
destroyer HMS Rooke (D83), one of four Shakespeare Class;
ordered 1918 and launched in 1920, renamed HMS Broke 13th
Clavum teneo: I
hold the key
HMS Gay Charger
All 'Gay' class MTB's
had identical crests, with name changed at top: Archer,
Bombardier, Bowman, Bruiser, Carbineer, Cavalier, Centurion,
Charger, Charioteer, Dragoon, Fencer & Forester.
The Gays were the
last petrol powered warships to be built for the Royal Navy.
HMS Gay Viking
and HMS Gay Corsair, a pair of
motor gun boats;
were superficially similar to the later Gay-class, although
their primary armament was a mixture of
QF 6 pounder Hotchkiss,
Oerlikon 20 mm cannon,
and depth charges. Both had left service by the top of the
HMS Rame Head
A headland off Plymouth
on the Cornish side - hence the black and gold collar.
Blue; a ram's head
erased regardant white armed gold gorged with a collar black
charged with three bezants.
Three in class, Rame Head, Berry Head & Duncansby Head,
Built in Canada as a Fort Class Merchant Cargo Ship
following the outbreak of the Second World War, HMS Rame
Head was acquired by the Royal Navy shortly after her
completion and converted into a repair ship. Serving with
the Royal Navy well into the 1970's, she was decommissioned
into reserve and moored in Portsmouth Harbour.
Small minelayers, eight
built from HMS Miner I to Miner VIII.
Miner I (1939-1967),
Miner II (1940-1970, Expended as target) Miner III
(1940-1972) Miner IV (1940-1964) Miner V (1941-1970 Expended
as target), Miner VI (1942 -1980) Miner VII (1944-1965)
Miner VIII (1944-1981)
Fort Augustus Abbey
St Benedict's Abbey, Fort Augustus on Loch Ness.
Blue; To be completed
at later date.
Pax in virtute
Peace in virtue
Benedict's Abbey, Fort Augustus was founded in 1876
and completed in 1880. The abbey school opened in 1920
and due to educational changes in Scotland and fewer
students, closed in 1993. With this massive lost of
income, the monks finances were serious curtailed and
although a recovery plan was put into place, sadly it was
not a success and the abbey finally closed in 1998.
NOTABLE OLD BOYS:
Lord Lovat, Sir
James Calder, Lord Carmont, Archbishop Joseph McDonald and
Bishop Bennett of Aberdeen.
I was 'volunteered' to be the first naval instructor and was
tasked to form a naval wing of the CCF (Combined Cadet
Force). On HMS Neptune's Daily Orders a Seaman Petty Officer
volunteer was called for, with no specific task detailed.
When no one came forward I was informed I was the
'volunteer'. However as it turned out, it was a marvellous
opportunity and a task I very much enjoyed. So much so that
I spent my weekends off there and which during those periods
managed to turn the old disused gym into a naval wing hut.
Logo and information courtesy of
County Town of Devon
Party per gale gules
and sable (divided vertically red and black), a castle
triple-towered with a portcullis or (gold) crest (helmet)
upon a wreath or sable (gold and black), a demi lion gules
langued and armed azure (a half-lion in red with silver
tongue and claws), supporting an orb, a cross thereon,
batons or Supporters Two Pegasus argent, (flanked by two
silver Pegasus), hoofed and maned or (gold) winged, barry
wavy divided horizontally of six argent and azure (in six
wavy bands of silver and blue).
Exeter received confirmation of the City's Arms from William
Hervey, Clarenceux King of Arms during a visit to Devon in
1564. The original draft in handwriting is preserved at the
College of Arms.
The motto Semper
Fidelis (Ever Faithful) was suggested by Elizabeth I in a
letter addressed to The Citizens of Exeter in 1588 in
recognition of a gift of money towards the fleet that
defeated the Spanish Armada.
Notes on Royal Naval Air
Stations: The badge artists' research led him to
discover that there were 71 HMS RNAS; 53 had Official badges; 18 didn't
have official badges. He found that he had "missed" 13 Officials
Gamecock; Gannet (2 places); Heron; Icarus; Landrail, Malabar;
Merganser; Merlin; Osprey; Owl; Robin
RNAS with official
crests totalled 53.
Blackcap; Buzzard Chough; Condor; Cormorant; Curlew; Daedalus; Dipper;
Eyas; Falcon; Fieldfare; Fulmar; Gadwall; Gamecock; Gannet (2 places);
Garuda; Godwit; Goldcrest; Goldfinch; Goshawk; Grebe; Heron; Hornbill;
Icarus; Jackdaw; Kestrel; Landrail; Malabar; Merganser; Merlin;
Nightjar; Nuthatch; Osprey; Owl; Peewit; Peregrine; Pintail; RaJaliya;
Raven; Ringtail; Robin; Sanderling; Seahawk; Sheba; Siskin; Sparrowhawk;
Tern; Ukussa; Urley; Valluru; Vulture.
RNAS without official
crests totalled 18
Flycatcher; Humming Bird; Kipanga; Kipanga II Nabaron; Nabberley;
Nabhurst; Nabreekie; Nabrock; Nabstock; Nabswick; Nabthorpe; Nighthawk;
Sea Eagle; Shrike; Simbang; Wagtail.
Pattern, the 'official' signed, dated, sealed drawing, this term
in use since 1919.
Historical Branch of the MOD, the head of which is a member of
the Ships Names and Badges Committee.
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updated March 8th, 2014