Wednesday, 27 June 2007
Lord Lyon to retire in December (apparently)
Photo: The Lord Lyon with the Young Fogey, St. Andrew's, 2006.
With the departure of one Blair another appears soon to follow. It has been announced on various Internet discussion groups and message boards that Robin Blair, Lord Lyon King of Arms, head of the Court of Lord Lyon and one of the Great Officers of State in Scotland, is to retire in December. Whilst I have not seen any official confirmation or announcement, I have received e-mail confirmation from more than one source. None of these e-mails contained privileged or confidential information and, having been intended for wide circulation, the contents are now deemed to be public knowledge.
The Lord Lyon has responsibility for regulating heraldry in Scotland, issuing new grants of arms, overseeing Scottish state ceremonial, confirming pedigrees and serving as the judge of the Court of Lord Lyon, the world's oldest active heraldic court. The unlawful use of arms remains a criminal offence in Scotland and, treated as tax evasion, may lead to prosecution in the Lyon Court (which has criminal jurisdiction). Whilst the Lord Lyon is the sole judge, his rulings may be appealed to the Court of Sessions and, eventually, to the House of Lords.
I have had dealings with The Lord Lyon and Lyon Court in the past and I have found Robin Blair to be an extremely helpful and cordial gentleman. I am most grateful for the assistance he afforded me in the acquisition of material for publication by Burke's Peerage and I wish him a happy retirement and continued success in his future endeavours.
As Tony Blair and Robin Blair exit, Sir Ian Blair, the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, will be feeling rather lonely!