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Civic heraldry of the United Kingdom
BIDEFORD (borough council)
Incorporated into: 1974 Torridge
Arms : Argent over Water barry wavy in base a Stone Bridge of three arches proper masoned Or issuant from the centre arch an Ancient Ship the mast appearing behind the Bridge also proper on a Chief Gules three Clarions Gold.
Crest : On a Wreath Argent and Azure an Elizabethan Ship in full sail proper the centre sail charged with a Clarion Or
Motto: 'PRO REGE AC FIDE AUDAX' - Bold for King and faith
The arms were officially granted onn September 12, 1936.
The arms are a comination of the Grenville arms and the old Borough seal, dated 1577, on which was depicted the stern of what is probably a barge passing through an arch of the bridge. Sir Richard Grenville was a native of Bideford, whose last fight in the Revenge, and the part played therein by 'men of Bideford in Devon' was nobly sung by Lord Tennyson.
The Elizabethan ship recalls Bideford's age-long connection with ship-building and the maritime trade.
The arms are continued by the Town Council.
The 16th century seal (Ewe, 1972)
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