Wednesday, September 26, 2012


In a country that possesses, as Canada does, an heraldic tradition, it would seem desirable for a permanent record to be kept of all heraldic devices issued and used therein. For most such devices, provision has already been made for such records. For the coats of arms of individuals and institutions (i.e. those armorial achievements granted by the Canadian Heraldic Authority), there is the Public Register of Arms, Flags and Badges, an easy-to-access on-line forum. For Naval, Military and Air Force identification badges (such items as ships’ badges, regimental cap badges and squadron badges), the Canadian Forces maintain a record of all such armorial devices authorised by the Governor General [1].

But how about those unit identification badges used in the Sea Cadet and Air Cadet services [2]? These are para-military and heraldic in type but, since they are not granted by either the CHA or the Canadian Forces, they are not included in the records noted above. It seemed, therefore, that our Society could make a useful contribution by recording such badges on our website. A start has been made on this project, and can be located on the site, under “Resources”. At present, the badges included are for the Sea Cadets – some 220-odd dating back to the 1980’s. These are badges designed and issued when the author was National Sea Cadet Chairman of the Navy League of Canada, serving as chairman of the original Corps Badge Committee. Subsequently-issued RCSC badges (some 40-odd) are being sought, as are the Squadron badges of the various Air Cadet corps. It is hoped to have a full archive of all such badges in due course.

Kevin Greaves.

  1. The Governor General approves the badges and instructs the Chief Herald of the Canadian Heraldic Authority to record them in the Public Register. Such badges may be found on the website of the Canadian Forces Directorate of History and Heritage.
  2. Since Army Cadet corps use the badges of their parent regiments (already recorded by the Canadian Forces) as unit identifying badges, the Army Cadets are not included in this discussion.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Tabard of the Chief Herald of Canada Unveiled

OTTAWA, May 17, 2012 - The first-ever Canadian tabard, the traditional garment of a herald, was officially unveiled today at the opening of the exhibit entitled "From Far and Wide - Honouring Great Canadians" located at 90 Wellington Street, Ottawa across from Parliament Hill. The opening was graced by His Excellency, The Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada. His speech highlighted the work of many Canadians who have also been recognised and honoured by the Canadian Honours System. He also mentioned the unveiling of the newly-designed tabard, and the fact that the tabard was funded by the Royal Heraldry Society of Canada. The opening was attended by approximately 200 people, many of whom have been formally honoured by the Canadian Honours System, including the Order of Canada.
The new tabard has a basic background of royal blue, the colour emblematic of the Governor General of Canada, and depicts a unique collection of Canadian symbols of heritage and honour. The tabard consists of 4 sections, the front, the rear and the sleeves. The sections collectively weigh approximately 2 kg.
The body of the tabard comprises of two principal design elements. The raven-bears on the central front and central rear are inspired by the supporters of the arms of the Canadian Heraldic Authority. These honour the emblematic traditions of the First peoples, designed by Maynard Johnny Jr. of the Coast Salish and Kwakwkw'wakw nations from British Columbia. The rest of the body of the tabard is embroidered with stripes of alternating maple leaves, the quintessential national emblem of Canada.
The most unusual characteristic of the tabard is that its body is devoid of the more traditional placement of the arms of the sovereign, which are embroidered instead on the tabard's removable sleeves. The arms are partitioned horizontally into equal third's. The result is a stunning and creative expression of Canadian heraldry, creating a most unique tabard, which will surely differentiate the Chief Herald of Canada from other heralds wearing more traditional tabards. The photograph below is a group shot of His Excellency (second from left), along with the Society's President, David M. Cvet (front left) and the Chief Herald of Canada, Dr. Clair Boudreau (front right). The other members of the Society appear behind the tabard, including (L-R): Patrick Crocco, Robb Watt, Peter Hannen, David Rumball, Edward "Ted" McNabb, Grete Hale, Allan Bird, Auguste Vachon, Vicken Koundakjian and Roger Lindsey.
The Royal Heraldry Society of Canada wishes to congratulate the Canadian Heraldic Authority and in particular the Chief Herald of Canada and Fraser Herald, Cathy Bursey-Sabourin (both Fellows of the Society) for their inordinate time, energy, creativity and patience, resulting in an extraordinarily creative representation of Canadian heraldry.

Governor's General Media Site: Opening of the Exhibit "From Far and Wide - Honouring Great Canadians"

Friday, May 11, 2012

Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal Awarded to Members of the Society

NANAIMO, BC, May 11, 2012 - The Society, the President, the Chair of the Honours & Awards Committee (Robert D. Watt) and the committee members wish to convey congratulations to the members awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. The RHSC was allotted an incredible 37 medals.

These were carefully distributed as a result of numerous discussions by the H&AC members, Robb Watt and the Society's President for weeks during the earlier part of this year. The selection process employed was one that was fair and efficient, allowing the Society to acknowledge worthy individuals and to submit the citations in a timely manner.
A special thank you must be conveyed to the Usher of the Black Rod and Canadian Secretary to the Queen, Kevin MacLeod who was our special guest at the banquet, Saturday evening on May 5 at the RHSC 46th AGM and Conference in Nanaimo. He not only delivered an engaging speech, he also posed for a series of portraits of his presenting the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal to each of the recipients present at the dinner following his speech.

The names of the individuals awarded are in alphabetical order: Allan Ailo; Allan Bird; Jocelyne Biron; Claire Boudreau, AIH, FRHSC; D'Arcy Boulton, AIH, FRHSC; Cathy Bursey-Sabourin, FRHSC; Blair K. Churchill; Patrick Crocco; David M. Cvet, FRHSC (Hon); Darren S.A.George, LRHSC; Jonathan Good, FRHSC; Kevin Greaves, FRHSC; Shirley Greenwood; Peter Hannen, FRHSC; Thomas G. Hargreaves; Peter Hogan; David Hovey; Ilona Jurkiewicz, FRHSC (Hon); Darrel E. Kennedy, AIH, FRHSC; Vicken Koundakjin; Carl Larsen; George Lucki; Robert McColgan; Edward "Ted" McNabb, FRHSC; Alex Moseanu; Stephen Murray; John Neill; Laurie Patten, FRHSC; Bruce K. Patterson, aih, FRHSC; David E. Rumball, FRHSC (Hon); Eric Saumure; Robbie D. Sprules; David V. Steeves; Ian Steingaszner, FRHSC (Hon); Auguste G. Vachon, aih, FRHSC; John B. Wilkes, FRHSC (Hon); Robert D. Watt, FRHSC, AIH. Many of the recipients are in the photos above.

Dr. Christopher McCreery was also awarded a medal, but through his work on the Federal Diamond Jubilee Committee.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Society's 46th AGM & Conference, Nanaimo, BC

The Coat of Arms of Nanaimo, BCThe Royal Heraldry Society of Canada's 46th AGM and Conference is scheduled in 2012 beginning Friday, May 4th to Sunday, May 6th in Nanaimo, BC. Details and the AGM & Conference package will be made available soon. For known details and other information pertaining to the AGM & Conference, contact the Society with