Southampton’s Historic Walls.(59).

Southampton’s Historic Walls-circa-1175.

The important Bargate, or North Gate, is the oldest feature- it is the twelve-century Norman semi-circular arch. Of the present walls which exist, public access is possible to view most of the ‘old walls’.  Over the years the Bargate has been used for  a variety of purposes ; a prison; ‘Court Leet sessions; ‘Mayor Making’; banquets, etc.; the upper floor-the ‘Guildhall’ currently a private arts’  exhibits venue-public access when open via a steep staircase. Ground floor spaces not well cared for.  Courtesy  Phillip Peberdy’s ‘Bargate Guildhall Museum-Southampton’-1967. An interesting & detailed publication (No. 2).

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Southampton’s Coat of Arms.(58).

Granted by Letters patent of Queen in 1575.

Official description follows..”Per fesse, argent and gules, three roses counterchanged of the field; with crest and supporters, namely, upon the helme on a wreath, silver and gules. on a mount vert, a castell of gold; out of the castell, a quene in her imperial majesty, holding in her right hand the sword of justice, in the left the balance of equity, mantelled, gules; dobled silver. The supporters; out of two ships, proper, upon the sea, standing in the forepart of the ships, two lions rampant, gold”.

Official description thanks to Phillip Peberty, F.M.A. 1967.