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 Tonbridge Urban Distict 1935 - 76  The Borough of Tonbridge and Malling  1976 

On the 30th September, 1935, the Garter, Clarenceux and Norry Kings of Arms granted and assigned unto the Urban District Council of Tonbridge the Arms 

The Explanation of the Arms is as follows:-

The bridge of five arches indicates the five waterways that once crossed Tonbridge high street. Three of these have now be covered or filled in.

The Ship implies the importance to Tonbridge of the making navigatable the river 100 years before the coming of the railway.

The two Towers represent Tonbridge Castle.

The Lion Passant Guardent on the Dexter Tower is allowed because the Great Seal of England was kept for some time in Tonbridge Castle.

The bezant charged with three chevronels gules on the Sinister tower is the markings of the De Clare family of Tonbridge Richard de Clare (or Fitzgilbert).

The Colours borne by the wreath are blue & silver   

The moto "Salus Populi Suprema Lex"

was one of the twelve ancient laws of Rome. It means "the welfare of the people is the highest law

Granted 12th March 1976.The Borough of Tonbridge and Malling was formed by the amalgamation of the Tonbridge Urban District, the Malling Rural District and the parishes of Hadlow and Hildenborough, from the Tonbridge Rural District.

 The Explanation of the Arms is as follows:-

Argent a Pale wavy Azure between two Piles reversed Sable a Chief embattled Gules.
CREST: On a Wreath Argent and Gules issuing from the top of a Tower Gules a Horse's Head Argent gorged with two Garlands of Hops saltirewise proper.

Motto 'FORWARD IN UNISON'.

The embattled red chief and the wavy blue pale suggests a letter T and depict the River Medway flowing under the great bridge at Tonbridge and downstream into the Malling area, which is represented by the two inverted black piles, suggesting a letter M. The chief can be taken as an allusion to a bridge or castle, both of which appeared in the arms and crest of the Tonbridge UDC.


The Invicta or Kentish horse, from the arms of the County Council, shows that the Borough is in that county, and the wreath of hops refers to one of the local industries. The tower is symbolic of the ancient abbeys and castles: - Tonbridge Castle, Malling Abbey, Leybourne Castle and Aylesford Friary, which make an important historic contribution to the amenities of the Borough.


The motto expresses the desire of this Council for the Borough to go forward as an entity and to plan for the future needs of the Borough as a whole.