Tom Jones – knighted by Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace in 2005 – applied to the College of Arms for his own Armorial Bearings and received them in 2011. Chartered by Richard the Third in 1484, the College of Arms determines the eligibility of individuals and awards and administrates Armorial Bearings.
A common misconception is that Armorial Bearings or Coat of Arms is granted to a familywhich is not the case. Coat of Arms is granted to individuals and members within a family may be granted a different Coat of Arms. The Armorial Bearing consists of the Shield, Helmet with Crest on top, scroll bearing the motto of the individual and a Mantling or cape, worn over the armor in hot or cold weather.
Sir Tom chose a Coat of Arms emblazoned with a Welsh dragon and a leek. For reference, in 2002 Sir Paul McCartney received a Coat of Arms decorated with a guitar and a liver bird representing his vocation and Liverpool roots. Sir Tom selected for the Crest a red dragon grasping an inverted leek which adorns the top of the Helmet. Jones chose an upright key standing between two trees to decorate his Shield. This symbol represents - Woodward –his actual last name.
Jones paid the requisite 3,500 pounds to apply for his Armorial Bearings. While applications are accepted from anyone, persons who have received recognition from the Queen or who bear civil or military commissions, or who are qualified by virtue of professional accomplishments are considered in advance of those simply attempting to verify their eligibility.