The Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter

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St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, 1831.

The Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter is a constituent group of the Foundation of the College of St George, Windsor Castle which is a national charity in England. The society includes more than 5,100 members worldwide (including more than 900 AmFriends members of the American Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter Inc.) to "protect, preserve and enhance" the college, its St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle and the royal chivalric knighthood, the Order of the Garter.

In addition to the many enhancement projects that the society helped fund since its creation, several major preservation projects were also completed. The ongoing project for 2009 is to clean and restore the chapel West Window which is one of the largest in any English church with its collection of late-medieval stained-glass. The project for 2007 was to clean and repair the chapel West Front including its 16th century stonework, turrets and flying buttresses.

People interested in the society and its traditions and service may join as its members.

History[edit]

A group known as the Association of the Descendants of the Knights of the Garter was founded in the 1920s, composed of knights (KG) and ladies (LG) of the order, and their descendants. Another group known as the Friends of St George's was founded in 1931 to support the college by raising funds to "protect, preserve and enhance" the chapel as the physical and spiritual center of the order. The two groups accomplished their missions separately until 1934 when they merged as The Society of the Friends of St George's with which is amalgamated the Association of the Descendants of the Knights of the Garter.

The society was founded with the mission to continue the support of the college and historic chapel. The society shares with the order its patron Saint George the Martyr, the motto "Honi soit qui mal y pense (Shame whoever thinks it evil)," and the insignia of the garter.

The society changed its name a last time in 1966 when it was designated by the Charity Commission for England and Wales as a charity. After celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2006, the society became a constituent group of the foundation in 2007 when it completed its change in corporate governance.

A separate Philadelphia-based group, the Society of Descendants of Knights of the Most Noble Order of the Garter [1] [2], was founded in 1929 according to the group, the Hereditary Society Blue Book and the Hereditary Society Community of the United States of America [3].

Officers[edit]

The foundation enjoys the service of its patron, the sovereign of the order, Her Majesty the Queen Elizabeth II and that of its president, the statutory knight companion of the order, His Royal Highness Charles, the Prince of Wales. The foundation vice presidents are the members of the order. The foundation patron and officers are assisted in their duties by its Board of Trustees.

The society members join in nominating a trustee to the foundation board, and are assisted in the society duties by its Friends' Consultative Committee.

Membership[edit]

All society members support its mission with their annual, ten-year or life contributions. Every member receives:

Friend members[edit]

Every friend member is also given a personalized written Membership Certificate which bears an illumination of the patron saint and dragon known as The George, and is signed by the Dean of Windsor; and a college heraldic badge which bears the heraldic shield of St George's Cross.

Descendant members[edit]

Descendant members have also proved descent from one or more of the current or former members of the order. Every descendant member is also given a similar certificate and a descendant heraldic badge, which instead bears the heraldic shield of the founder of the order, the Plantagenet King Edward III, surmounted by a circlet crown.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2011. Annual Review 2010/11. Exposed Design Consultants. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2010. Annual Review 2009/10. Exposed Design Consultants. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2009. Annual Review 2008/9. Exposed Design Consultants. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2008. Annual Review 2007/8. Exposed Design Consultants. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2007. Annual Review 2006/7. Exposed Design Consultants. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2006. Result of the Vote on the Resolution of the Members of the Society at the Annual General Meeting in St George's Chapel on Saturday 6 May 2006. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2006. Annual General Meeting in St George's Chapel on Saturday 6 May 2006 at 2:00 pm. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2006. Annual Report 2005/6. Tuch Design. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2005. Annual Report 2004/5. Tuch Design. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Vickers, Hugo. 2004. Garter Day 2004. Delworth Ltd., Colnbrook, Slough, Berkshire, England.
  • Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter, The. 2004. Annual Report 2003/4. Tuch Design. Windsor Castle, Berkshire, England.
  • Begent, Peter J. 2001. The Romance of St George's Chapel; Windsor Castle. Delworth Ltd., Colnbrook, Slough, Berkshire, England.
  • Various. 1831. The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 17, No. 488.

External links[edit]

  • Charity Commission: 2007–Present [4]
  • Charity Commission: 1966-2007 [5]
  • CharitiesDirect.com: The Foundation of the College of St George, Windsor Castle [6]
  • The Prince of Wales Charities: Patronages, The Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter [7]
  • The Princess Royal Charities: Patronages, The Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter [8]
  • St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle: The Society of the Friends of St George's and Descendants of the Knights of the Garter [9]
  • UK Department for Constitutional Affairs THE ROYAL PECULIARS: Report of the Review Group set up by Her Majesty The Queen, Chapter 5: St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, London 2001 [10]