Have You Seen This Shield?

The Guild Committee has issued an appeal to find one of its most treasured trophies, the Liverpool Shield, which was last awarded in 1955.

Guild competitors and audiences will be familiar with the magnificent shields awarded to the winners of the choir classes each year. The Transvaal and Vancouver Shields – presented by the South African and Canadian Manx Societies – and the Manchester and Liverpool Shields – presented by the thriving Manx Societies of these cities. The large oak shields with exquisite silverwork depicting Manx scenes are an important part of the Guild’s rich history, having been a part of it for more than one hundred years. That is all except one, the present whereabouts of which are a mystery.

The Liverpool Shield, bestowed by the Liverpool Manx Society in 1909 in appreciation of their kinsmen’s musical work in the Isle of Man, was created by the Liverpool Goldsmiths’ Company of 66 Bold Street and presented to the winners of the class for Choral Societies. In the early 1900s there were many large choirs and choral societies but by 1955 there was only one, Hermitage Choral Society. This marks the last time the trophy was presented.

The oak shield features a silver Viking ship on Manx waters, the Tower of Refuge, dolphins and an ancient harp, surmounted by the symbol of Liverpool – the Liver Bird.

Festival chairman Anne Clarke said: ‘The Guild Committee would be most grateful for any information as to The Liverpool Shield’s whereabouts. It is most likely that it has just been overlooked and is lying in an attic somewhere, so we are hopeful that we are able to bring it back home with this public appeal.’

Local homebuilder Dandara became headline sponsor of the Festival in 2015. Group Marketing Manager Angela Beresford added: ‘The Liverpool Shield is clearly a dearly missed Guild trophy and it would be so special to bring it home. Its striking design is highly recognisable so with a bit of luck and good rummage in attics, garages and storage rooms, perhaps 2021 is the year we find it.’ 

If anyone has any information on the missing Liverpool Shield, you can contact the Festival Secretary on email at: manxguild@gmail.com

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