The College of Arms’ New Voluntary Free Change Policy
As part of the Society College of Arms’ ongoing efforts to deal with developing standards on offensive names and armory, the Laurel Queen of Arms has announced a new policy allowing free changes for certain previously registered names and armory.
On the April 2020 Cover Letter, Laurel announced:
In recognition of the developments over the past few years, some people with registered names and armory that are, or have become, unintentionally offensive may wish to change their registrations. For example, the phrase the Gypsy has been identified as hate speech by the Roma people and the United Nations. A submitter might wish to change that byname to one that indicates Roma ancestry but does not have the same connotations. Others feature heraldic charges that have been coopted by hate groups.
Starting immediately, the College of Arms will allow submitters to request name and armory changes to address offensiveness concerns free of charge (including both Laurel and kingdom charges).
This is a voluntary program. At this time, no registrations are being revoked – only changed at the request of the submitter.
Submitters wishing help in researching whether there might be unintended negative meanings to any of their names should contact Mistress Alys Mackyntoich, firstname.lastname@example.org, who will find a herald with appropriate expertise to assist you.