Royal Charters of Incorporation

On the 10th February 1453 the York Taylors at last received the constitutional privilege restricted to all but a very few of the craft organisations in medieval England - a Royal Charter of Incorporation. 

By his letters patent of that date, and at the request of fifteen York Taylors, King Henry VI formally called into existence "a perpetual fraternity or guild of St John the Baptist", with the right to hold property and to be administered by a Master and four Wardens to be elected every Midsummer; they were also to have the right to impose their own clothing or livery on themselves and servants.

Gradually over the next century and more, and no doubt under increasing economic competition from the new woollen industrial centres of the West Riding, more and more of the York textile trades began to amalgamate with one another. King Charles II gave the united Company of Taylors and Drapers of York his Royal Charter of Incorporation on 26 April 1662 (a magnificent document, still in the Company's possession). The Company had no arms of its own until the Arms were granted in 1963 by the Garter King of Arms.  The Grant of Arms contains the three crests shown above.
 
Framed copies of the 1662 Charter and the 1963 Grant of Arms are displayed in the Hall entrance area.