Her Majesty The Queen with HRH Prince Charles and HRH Prince Willian in Garter robes at Windsor
The Garter banners on display in St George's Chapel, Windsor
Damaged embroidery on Edward VII's Garter banner
The Order of the Garter was founded by Edward III in 1348 and is the most prestigious British order of chivalry. Appointments are made at the Sovereign's sole discretion and membership limited to the Sovereign, the Prince of Wales, and no more than 24 living members, or Companions. The order's emblem is a garter with the motto Honi soit qui mal y pense (Middle French: "Shame on him who thinks ill of it") in gold lettering. Members of the order wear it on ceremonial occasions.
St George's Chapel in Windsor is the mother church of the Order of the Garter. During their lifetime, all members of the Order of the Garter are entitled to display their heraldic crests and banners in St. George's Chapel.
Some years ago, the Garter banners of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra were found to be in such disrepair that they were removed from their positions to the right of the High Altar, above their tombs.
Hand & Lock, who have been providing embroidery to the Royal Family since 1767, have surveyed these banners and confirmed it would be possible to restore them to earlier glory.
The Trust is aiming to raise £50,000 to complete this project, and to re-dedicate the banners, restored to their rightful position in St George's Chapel. Some £20,000 has already been raised including a contribution from Hand & Lock themselves and £30,000 is now needed.
King Edward VII in the mantle of the order of the Garter