Quasquicentennial 1990

Our first post from the Thames Polytechnic Archives relates to its centenary celebrations in 1990. One of the ways in which this auspicious occasion was marked was to ask the College of Arms to create new armorial bearings.

TP_Centinary_Coat of Arms The main elements on the shield are taken from that of its predecessor Woolwich Polytechnic

Woolwich Polytechnic Coat of Arms

with an engineers’ wheel ‘or’ for technical subjects, and a book ‘or’ for academic subjects on a ‘chief gules’. A cannon with lion’s head ‘erased or’ and ‘langued gules’ on a ‘pale sable’ represent the Royal Arsenal, from where students were initially drawn. The waves in ‘azure on argent’ represent the river Thames and come from the London County Council coat of arms.

GLC Coat of arms

Coincidentally three of these elements also appeared on the badge of Garnett College (Roehampton) which merged with Thames Polytechnic in 1987.

Garnett Badge

The final element, the capital of a Doric column ‘or’, represents Hammersmith College of Art and Building whose Departments of Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Surveying merged with Woolwich Polytechnic  in 1969.

The ‘dexter supporter’ is a white horse from the arms of Kent:

Arms of Kent

on a cedar tree representing Dartford College, which merged with Thames Polytechnic in in 1976.

Dartford Cedar Tree_001

The ‘sinister supporter’ is the lion of London on an oak tree from the arms of Quintin Hogg, one of our founders, whose portrait now hangs in QA063.

WP_Quintin Hogg_001

The crest wears a coronet of roses and shells from the badge of Avery Hill College which merged with the Polytechnic in 1985.

College Badge_AHR_49_July_001

On top sits a red owl, for wisdom, a completely new element.

Our research so far has failed to find a Dartford College badge which supposedly has the cedar tree on it.

According to The University of Westminster Archives, Quintin Hogg their founder, did not have a Coat-of-Arms, and the oak tree appears to come from the cress of the arms of his grandson Quintin Hogg, Viscount Hailsham, the Conservative politician.

Lord Hailsham's Crest