Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster

The Cardinal's Coat of Arms

Cardinal Vincent Nichols’ Coat of Arms combines traditional design features and personal motifs.


The red ecclesiastical hat, or galero, with its fifteen tassels hanging down on each side tells us that this is an cardinal’s coat of arms. The gold cross with two bars show the Cardinal is the head of an archiepiscopal or metropolitan see.

The left hand side of the shield represents his Archdiocese, Westminster. The white Y shape on the red background is the pallium. This is presented to metropolitan archbishops by the Holy Father and is worn over the chasuble. It symbolizes the Cardinal’s participation in the pastoral ministry of the Pope and his communion with the See of Rome.

Our thoughts are also directed to Rome by the blue wavy band running diagonally across the right hand side of the shield, which represents the Tiber. But it represents, too, the River Mersey and calls to mind the importance of Liverpool in the Cardinal’s life.

The three scallop shells signify not only the Venerable English College in Rome, where the Cardinal studied for the Priesthood, but also the virtue of faith by which we travel our pilgrim path.

The anchors indicate both the Cardinal’s seafaring grandfather, and the virtue of hope.

The red roses, as well as symbolize Lancashire (the Cardinal’s home county), are emblems of the virtue of charity.

Finally, the Latin inscription Fortis Ut Mors Dilectio, taken from the Song of Solomon 8:6, translates into “Love is strong as death”.

Latest news
  • Call to protect status of Jerusalem holy sitesCall to protect status of Jerusalem holy sites

    The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and Cardinal Vincent Nichols have called on the Israeli Government to protect the status quo at the holy sites in Jerusalem. In a joint letter to the Israeli Ambassador to London, Mark Regev, the two fa...

  • Cardinal invites young people to be 'digital apostles'

    Cardinal Vincent met with a group of young people from around the diocese on Tuesday, 27 February to listen to their hopes and desires for their own lives and for the Church. 

  • Slaves on Our Streets

    As part of the The Evening Standard’s special investigation into the issue of modern slavery in autumn 2017, Cardinal Vincent convened a round table of experts from business, media, law, finance, philanthropy, and law enforcement and victim supp...