Coat of Arms

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“Conquer we shall, but first we must contend, ’Tis not the strife that crowns us, but the end.”

In the Spring of 2004, in anticipation of the School’s centenary in 2005, the School applied to the College of Arms for a Grant of Arms.

Its design makes reference to the four school houses: Brunel, Pitt, Wellington and Nelson and to the school’s founder, Miss Amy Hanson.

The background colours are those of the School, namely red and green, in the centre of the shield is a silver cross flory, which is an allusion to the arms of Lord Nelson, Britain’s greatest Admiral, who bore for his Arms a black cross flory on a gold background. The cross flory is also a reference to Miss Hanson, a devout Christian.

Around the cross are twelve bezants, or gold discs, arranged in a saltire that allude to the Arms of the first Duke of Wellington, the victor of Waterloo, who bore a cross between five plates (white discs) in saltire in each quarter.

The Crest wreath and mantling are red and white, the principal colour and metal of the Arms.

Above the helm is the Crest, which consists of a stork resting one foot on a ship’s propeller, an allusion to the Arms of William Pitt the Younger, Prime Minister of Britain during the Napoleonic Wars. In Pitt’s crest, the stork rests its foot on an anchor but the stork is also a symbol associated with childhood and with the duty of care a school has for its pupils.

The propeller alludes to Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the celebrated Victorian inventor and engineer, after whom the school’s fourth house is named. Brunel designed the SS Great Britain, the world’s first steam-powered, propeller-driven passenger liner whose propeller was a technological breakthrough with far-reaching applications; today’s jet engines have, at their core, a series of closely grouped propellers.

The Motto, ‘Conquer We Shall’ is an abbreviated version of that chosen for the school at its foundation by Miss Hanson and inscribed in ‘The Holy Books’, which record the names of every pupil who has attended Arnold House since 1905. The full version of the motto, taken from a poem by Robert Herrick, an Anglican priest and poet from the time of the English Civil War in the 17th Century, is as follows:

“Conquer we shall, but first we must contend,
’Tis not the strife that crowns us, but the end.”