Civic History and Regalia

The Lord Mayor of Chester has a Chain of Office, and an evening jewel, both to be worn only by the office holder. The chain is worn during the day and in the evenings when the Lord Mayor is wearing day dress. The evening jewel is worn with dinner dress (and, by a Lady Lord Mayor, if a light/fragile dress is being worn during the evening). The Consort has a chain and an evening jewel, both to be worn only by the office holder.

The Mace

Chester’s Mace is one of the earliest examples of elaborately ornamented Maces. It is made of silver-gilt and is 4ft 6ins long. The mace is divided into three lengths by large knobs, and is richly chased with a flowing design of roses and leaves.

The mace is the emblem of the power of dignity of the Lord Mayor. In Civic processions, the mace always precedes the Lord Mayor and no person should be permitted to walk between the Lord Mayor and the Mace Bearer.

Chester’s previous mace is believed to have been lost during the siege in the 1640s.

The Civic Sword

From earliest times the sword has held particular significance as a symbol of legal authority and power. Supreme power for dispensing justice was held in the power of the sovereign and could be personally conferred by them to other authorities by the gift of a sword. This concession was not conferred lightly and Chester is one of the few cities to have received the honour.

It also confers the right to carry the sword with the point erect – as a sign of power – except in the presence of the Sovereign or the heir to the throne.

The Sword is 4ft 2ins long and its blade is double edged steel decorated with three grooves and shields of arms diagonally across. The scabbard, which is made of cedar wood covered with velvet, was a gift from Charles, Earl of Derby in 1668. Names of several seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Mayors are inscribed on gold bands and a small shield commemorates the investiture of the Prince of Wales, the future Edwards VIII, at Caernarfon Castle in 1911. On that occasion, Chester’s sword was used to perform the investiture ceremony owing to the absence of the official Sword of State.

The Admiralty Oar

The Oar is an ancient symbol of Chester’s links as a former Port and the Lord Mayor is Admiral of the Dee.

The Chester City Oar is of silver, 14ins long (the blade being 8¼ ins, the flat part 3¾, and the handle 2ins).

The Lord Mayoral Chain

The Lord Mayoral Chain of Chester is a plain and composed of 37 massive links and 36 smaller ones connecting the larger. It bears a handsome circular badge, which is flanked on each side by the supporters of the City arms.

The Sheriff’s Chain

The chain worn by the Sheriff of the City resembles the Lord Mayor’s chain in general design and appearance.

The chain is of silver gilt and the front of the badge consists of what are known as the arms of the Sheriff “a chevron between three garbs”, the shield surmounted by the head of a cherub.

Lord Mayor of Chester’s Attendant talking about Chester Civic Regalia