Lord Lyon gets his crown back

THE crown worn by the Lord Lyon at coronation ceremonies has been recreated.

It was commissioned by the Heraldry Society of Scotland at a cost of almost 10,000.

The design, by Nicola Williams, is based on the traditional Scottish crown, which was last seen in the 17th century and whose whereabouts are unknown. It is a combination of the traditional with what she describes as a "contemporary take".

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Each stage of the design concept was overseen by both the Heraldry Society of Scotland and the Lord Lyon.

The crown was fashioned by Edinburgh jeweller Hamilton and Inches. The project, from the cutting of a thick strip of solid silver bullion to the final gilding, took almost five months to complete.

Romulus Squire, chairman of the Heraldry Society of Scotland, and Robin Blair, the Lord Lyon, met with the Queen in private last week to present the crown for her approval. Squire said: "She seemed very pleased with the finished article."

The crown will be displayed by Hamilton and Inches at its George Street premises from August 1 and for the duration of the Edinburgh Festival.

Robin Blair, the 35th Lord Lyon, is a retired partner of the Edinburgh law firm, Dundas and Wilson. He now holds court from his office at East Register House in Edinburgh.

The title, Lord Lyon - King of Arms, stems from an ancient tradition of sovereign appointment. The appointee is responsible for "granting armorial bearing of the recognition of clan chiefs". The Lord Lyon, who has his own procurator fiscal, investigates abuses of heraldic law.

Car manufacturer Porsche was consulted by the Lord Lyon in the 1990s with regard to its distinctive shield design motif being displayed in Scotland.