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Civic heraldry of the United Kingdom
Incorporated into : 1965 Tower Hamlets
Arms : Argent on Water in base proper a Lymphad sail furled Sable on a Chief Azure between two Fire-Tongs erect a Pale of the field charged with a Cross Gules and in the first quarter with an Anchor of the second.
Crest : On a Wreath Argent and Azure upon the Battlements of a Tower proper two Anchors in saltire Or.
Motto: 'A MAGNIS AD MAIORA' - From great things to greater.
The arms were granted on August 8, 1931.
The arms express the history of Stepney. Shipping has been the major industry, thus the ship. The fire-tongs are the symbol of St. Dunstan, the patron saint of the town, who used fire-tongs to pinch the Devil's nose. The St. Georges cross is derived from the arms of the Greater London Council and the arms of London. The anchors again symbolise the port.
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© since 1995, Heraldry of the World, Ralf Hartemink
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Literature : Scott-Giles, C.W. : Civic heraldry of England and Wales, London, 1932.