On Saturday, 18 May 2019, Crail and the Crail Preservation Society celebrated two important mile stones: the official opening of the restored Doocot and the return of the royal burgh’s coat of arms to the Community Council. Both events were presided over by the Lord Lyon King of Arms and Carrick Pursuivant and saw large crowds in attendance.
The doocot restoration has been one of the Society’s main projects for the last several years and it is tremendously gratifying to see it once again in excellent condition and now, for the first time ever, open daily to the public between 10 and 4. Alert visitors may also note the presence of Crail’s newest heraldic stone set in the pavement near the doocot entrance:
The Royal Burgh of Crail used a coat of arms very much like the one above on its Common Seal from time immemorial and certainly at least since 1357 (see note below). With the revision of local government in 1975 that privilege was lost, but it has now been reinstated by a fresh grant of the traditional arms – together with a new and appropriate crest – to Crail Community Council:
As the Lord Lyon said in his address to the assembled citizens of the burgh, both the renewed arms and restored doocot are shining examples of a community looking to its past to draw strength for its future.
(c) 2019 Crail Preservation Society
Note. For further information on the history and use of the burgh arms, see Erskine Beveridge’s Churchyard Memorials of Crail (Edinburgh, 1893), p. 11, and the Calendar of Documents Relating to Scotland, Vol. III, 1307-1357 (Edinburgh, 1887), 302-303.