Rose and Crown: Our Hampshire Scouts Badge

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You'll find it on the sleeve of every Scout in Hampshire, that's tens of thousands of us, and on the back of our Hampshire Scouts necker worn by our County team. But where did the rose and crown symbol come from?

The answer may not be as straight-forward as you think.

The Hampshire Rose

Lots of Counties use the rose as a symbol; the white rose of Yorkshire and the red rose of Lancashire are well known to any schoolchild who's studied the late Middle Ages.

Hampshire also has an association with the rose in heraldry dating back many centuries, but it specifically has links with the Tudor rose since 1533. Mounted high on the wall in the Great Hall of the former Winchester Castle is the Round Table. Believed for many centuries to be the table of King Arthur, it shows the mythical King painted on it and a single rose painted at the centre.

In 1533 however, the table was repainted as a compliment to the reigning King Henry VIII with King Arthur now shown wearing Tudor robes and the rose modernised to a double Tudor Rose. Ever since, heraldry in Hampshire has been split between the original red rose and the Tudor red and white rose ever since.

The Round table in Winchester Great Hall. From Wikimedia Commons user Rs-nourse
The Round Table found in Winchester. Picture: Wikimedia Commons Rs-nourse under CC BY-SA 4.0.

The rose with the crown above has had just as long a history; it is moulded into a cannon from the Hampshire-built Mary Rose, appears on 19th century coinage and to this day serves as the logo of Hampshire County Council. A variation is now in use as the County flag of Hampshire, albeit with a Saxon crown and triple rose.

The Hampshire Scouts badge

A Hampshire Scouts neckerchief with the Double rose and crown emblem embroidered on it. The scarf is black with gold and red trimming.

Our badge that we use today was introduced around 1931 to replace the original badge (described as dull). For our design, the badge of the Hampshire Lawn Tennis Association was used. The design has remained remarkably similar ever since.

It features a double rose, but with all red petals, to reflect the ancient symbols of Hampshire pre-dating the Tudor rose. Today you'll find it on our new County Neckerchiefs, introduced in 2018, and on our uniforms still.

The old logo of Hampshire Scouts with a fleur de lis inside a double red and white rose design.
Our old logo.

While our badge has been flying the flag for the double red rose for nearly a century we've dabbled in the Tudor rose for a while ourselves. A White rose with a red border and a black centre with a Scouting fleur-de-lis was used as a logo for Hampshire Scouts from the turn of the millennium until 2018.

Since then we've made sure we keep it consistent with our double red rose.

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