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Object of the Month – GEORGE III’s COAT OF ARMS

24 May 2019

Object of the Month – GEORGE III’s COAT OF ARMS

The Main Gate was built in 1720 and provided homes for the Yard Porter and the Boatswain. It was the main entrance to the dockyard for the workforce.

The King at the time was George I, and the imposing Main Gate building originally displayed his coat of arms.

They survived the reign of his son, George II, and most of the reign of his grandson George III. But in 1810 the king’s mental illness led to the establishment of a regency, and the following year George I’s arms were moved to the inside of the gate and replaced by those of George III – without the French arms, reflecting his renunciation of his claim to the French throne in 1800, following the union with Ireland and the abolition of the French monarchy.

They’ve been a prominent feature of Chatham ever since.

Thanks to one of our research volunteers, Dave Kirk, for this blog!


Anon (n.d.) ‘Chatham Royal Dockyard, Main Gate’, online at, accessed 10 December 2018

Anon (n.d.) ‘George III of the United Kingdom’, online at, accessed 10 December 2018

Anon (n.d.) ‘English Claimants to the French Throne’, online at, accessed 10 December 2018

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