The Crests of Blackburn and Darwen

Blackburn Crest

Blackburn Coat of Arms

The Coat of Arms comprises:

Three bees in flight. The bee is an emblem of skill, perseverance and industry. “B” also stands for Blackburn; and further, as the Peel family sprang from this neighbourhood and bears a bee in flight on its shield, the idea naturally suggests itself that Sir Robert Peel had adopted the Blackburn bee.

The shield is silver or white, and thus emblematical of calico, the product of the Blackburn bees.

The broad wavy black line represents the Black Brook (Blakewater) on the banks of which the town is built.

The silver bugle horn was the crest of the first Mayor of Blackburn, William Henry Hornby, Esq. It is also the emblem of strength.

The gold lozenges, or fusils (diamond shaped), are the heraldic emblems of spinning, derived from the Latin “fusus” or “fusilium,” meaning a spindle, and they refer to the invention of the “Spinning Jenny” in 1864 by James Hargreaves, a native of the district. They also denote the connection of Joseph Feilden, Esq., with Blackburn, as Lord of the Manor, as he bore lozenges on his shield.

The background of green is there to remind us of the time when Blackburn was one of the Royal Forests in the time of Edward the Confessor.

The shuttle is the emblem of weaving, the trade which has contributed more than any other to the prosperity of the town.

The dove taking wing with an olive branch in her beak (the emblem of peace) attached to the thread of the shuttle, represents the beneficial results emanating from the art of weaving. 

The translation of the moto “Arte et Labore” is By Skill and Labour.

Darwen Coat of Arm

Darwen Coat of Arm


The Coat of Arms comprises:

The Borough received its grant of armorial bearings from the College of Heralds by Letters Patent dated the 7th August 1878. They are as follows:

Arms: or a fesse, wavy with cottices, also wavy azure, between three sprigs of the cotton tree slipped and fructed proper.

Crest: on a wreath of the colours in front a demi-miner habited proper holding over his shoulder a pick or, a shuttle fesse-wise of the last thread pendant proper.

Between the arms and the crest are the closed helm and slashed cloak which are displayed on all civic arms.

The translation of the moto “Absque Labore Nihil” is Nothing Without Labour.

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