Symbol of civic pride for town

The Lord Lyon presents the new crest to community council chair Mary Lennox. Picture: Brodie Marno
The Lord Lyon presents the new crest to community council chair Mary Lennox. Picture: Brodie Marno

Banchory Community Council has been awarded a new civic coat of arms for the town.

The original heraldry lapsed when Banchory ceased to be a burgh under local government reorganisation in 1975.

Community council junior member Annya Law explaining the symbols on the shield

Community council junior member Annya Law explaining the symbols on the shield

Local people identified a new coat of arms as one of the aims in the action plan produced by the community council in 2015-17.

In order to get the new crest approved, the council had to apply to the Court of the Lord Lyon who controls heraldry for Scotland.

The process took nearly two years, but the town now has a new symbol.

The Lord Lyon, Dr Joseph Morrow, presented the council with the Letters patent at a ceremony in Banchory last Thursday, attended by Carol Kinghorn, Lord Lieutenant of Kincardineshire, and Aberdeenshire Provost Bill Howatson.

Banchory's new coat of arms

Banchory's new coat of arms

Community council chair Mary Lennox said: “Today, only community councils have the right to hold civic coats of arms.

“In this instance we, in a sense, inherit the rights of the old burgh. The shield is similar to that of the old burgh but features a new crown on top. Other than that it has the original features.”

It is hoped that the coat of arms will be a feature to help the town to take pride in its identity and which can be used to advertise its attractions.

Mrs Lennox added: “‘We want this to be a showcase for the town’s talent as well as being an opportunity for everyone to see our new coat of arms.”

The council is planning an open event on Saturday, June 15, to introduce the new crest to the community.

It will be held in the town hall and will feature all three Banchory schools and many other local groups.

Banchory Heritage Society will stage an exhibition giving an outline of local history and culture and there will be activities for children, including a treasure hunt and a story teller.

Meanwhile, the new coat of arms has been described as an “important moment” in Banchory’s history.

Aberdeenshire West MSP Alexander Burnett has congratulated the community council on its success in a motion to the Scottish Parliament.

The Scottish Conservative said: “Many former burghs across the North-east still use crests and coats of arms on street signs and at their town limits.

“They are very powerful and distinctive brands which are great for tourism branding, merchandise, and general public image.

“After several years, I’m pleased Banchory Community Council have brought Saint Ternan back after a 44-year absence.”

The patron saint of the parish is thought to have founded a Christian settlement in the district in the fifth century and to have been buried there.