This page attempts to explain the significance and meaning behind the Brunswick Arms Inn Sign. Research is augmented with photographs of pub signs.


Inn Signs
Inn Signs
Brunswick Arms

Background Information
The coat-of-arms on this inn sign suggests that this pub in Worcester pub was named, like many others, following the accession of the house of Brunswick. However, the pubs that emerged following this were located mainly in the West Riding of Yorkshire.

This Brunswick Arms is almost certainly a reference to a famous naval battle of the 18th century. The connection with the pub is that it is located a short distance from the old barracks of the Worcestershire Regiment who were honoured in the battle.

The regiment was amalgamated with the Sherwood Foresters in 1970 and together they had a total of 176 Battle Honours earned in all parts of the world and spanning the period from Marlborough's Wars in the early 18th Century up to the Second World War. Four principal battles are commemorated annually including The Glorious First of June 1794 - a naval battle in which the 29th Regiment fought as marines aboard Lord Howe's Fleet, which had put to sea to intercept an important French convoy from the West Indies.

HMS Brunswick, with 81 men of the 29th on board, was played into battle with the tune "Heart of Oak", which was later adopted as one of the Regimental marches. Lord Howe commanding 25 sail of the line and 7 frigates, attacked a larger and heavier French fleet under the command of Admiral Villaret. The British captured seven line-of-battle ships, one of them sinking shortly afterwards, the remaining six arriving at Portsmouth on the 13the June.

For its share in the engagement the Regiment was later awarded the Naval Crown to be borne with its Battle Honours. There is a painting by Mark Churms, entitled 'Hearts of Oak', illustrating the height of the battle. Many place names along the British Columbia coastline, particularly in the Howe Sound, originate from the naval battle. Indeed, there is a Brunswick Mountain which was named by Captain Richards of HMS Plumper who surveyed the coastline between 1857 and 1861.

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HMS Brunswick forms part of another famous chapter in naval history. The vessel was designated to host the executions of three members who were involved in the infamous Mutiny on The Bounty of 1789. The trial of the mutineers took place at the harbour some three years after the event. Four were acquitted and six sentenced to death for mutiny and desertion. However, the court recommended the King's Mercy for two of the men and another was discharged on a technicality. Three men, by the names of Ellison, Burkitt and Millward, were publicly hanged on board H.M.S. Brunswick.
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Inn Sign
Inn sign of the Brunswick Arms at Worcester St John's [2005]

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